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(as) black as ink

1. Completely black; totally without light or color. The basement gives me the creeps, it's as black as ink down there!
2. Of a thoroughly evil, mean-spirited, or ungenerous mindset or disposition. She narrowed her eyes, and I could tell her thoughts had turned as black as ink.
See also: black, ink

(as) gay as pink ink

Overtly or flamboyantly homosexual. Offensive when used pejoratively. I can't believe Sarah asked him out on a date—how can she not see that he's clearly as gay as pink ink? I've been gay as pink ink since I was a teenager, so it wasn't a surprise to my parents when I came out.
See also: gay, ink, pink

be bleeding red ink

To be struggling financially, as of a business; to be consistently losing money. Red ink was traditionally used when indicating withdrawals from a business account. If our company is still bleeding red ink like this at the end of the quarter, we'll be in real danger of going bankrupt.
See also: bleeding, ink, red

in ink

In pen, as opposed to pencil. The teacher says that we're not allowed to do our math homework in ink. You need to sign this in ink—here's a pen.
See also: ink

ink in

1. To fill in or cover a blank area with ink. A noun or pronoun can be used between "ink" and "in." Now that I've outlined the cartoon character, I'll ink it in with these markers.
2. To write something with a pen. A noun or pronoun can be used between "ink" and "in." Geez, there's so much paperwork here that I'll be inking in my name all day!
See also: ink


slang A writer, especially one who produces a large amount of low-quality material for a living. I spent a lot of time after college as an ink-slinger for various newspapers and magazines while working on my first novel.

much ink has been spilled

People have written a vast amount (about a certain topic). Typically followed by "on/over/about (something)." Following the scandal, much ink has been spilled about the country's history in dealing with corporate crime. Although much ink has been spilled on the topic, there has sadly been little action at a legislative level.
See also: been, ink, much, spill

never dip your pen into the company's ink

vulgar slang Do not have a romantic or sexual relationship with someone you work with. "Pen" is a reference to one's penis. Do you really think it's a good idea to date your boss? I'm a big believer that you should never dip your pen into the company's ink.
See also: dip, ink, never, pen

paper never refused ink

People are able to write whatever they want, however inaccurate or misleading. A: "It seems like all manner of nonsense is being printed these days." B: "Well, paper never refused ink!"
See also: ink, never, paper, refuse

pen and ink

slang To smell foul. The phrase comes from rhyming slang in which "pen and ink" rhymes with "stink." Primarily heard in UK. I really pen and ink after a hard session at the gym.
See also: and, ink, pen

red ink

Financial debts or losses. We don't feel confident investing in your company when there is so much red ink in your books. If our we're still bleeding red ink like this at the end of the quarter, we'll be in real danger of going bankrupt.
See also: ink, red

in ink

written or signed with a pen that uses ink, not with a pencil. You should write your report in ink. You must sign your checks in ink.
See also: ink

ink something in

1. to fill in an outline with ink. Please ink the drawing in with care. Ink in the drawing carefully.
2. to write something in ink. Please ink your name in on the dotted line. Now, ink in your signature on this line right here.
See also: ink

red ink

Fig. debt; indebtedness as shown in red ink on a financial statement. There is too much red ink in my financial statement. Too much red ink and the company will collapse.
See also: ink, red

be bleeding red ink

If a company is bleeding red ink, it has severe financial problems. Even large companies are bleeding red ink. The company reported huge losses for the year ended March 31, but vowed that after three straight years of bleeding red ink, the worst is behind them. Note: This expression comes from the practice in the past of using red ink to fill in entries on the debit side of a book of accounts.
See also: bleeding, ink, red

much ˌink has been ˈspilled (on/over something)

a lot has been written about something: Much ink has been spilled on the life of Shakespeare.
See also: been, ink, much, spill

red ˈink

(business) debts, losses or money that is owed: The company opened the fiscal year with $315.9 million in red ink.The health care industry is bleeding red ink (= losing a lot of money).
See also: ink, red

(as) gay as pink ink

mod. having to do with an obviously homosexual person, usually a male. These two guys—as gay as pink ink—came in together.
See also: gay, ink, pink

gay as pink ink

See also: gay, ink, pink


1. n. cheap red wine. The old wino prefers ink to anything else.
2. n. publicity; print media coverage of someone or something. The movie star’s divorce got a lot of ink for a few days.
3. n. a tattoo. (The same as paint.) When dya get the new ink?
4. n. tattoos in general; the amount of tattooing on someone’s body. (The same as paint.) He’s got ink covering his back.

ink slinger

n. a professional writer; a newspaper reporter. The ink slingers have been at the candidates again.
See also: ink, slinger

red ink

n. debt; indebtedness as shown in red ink on a financial statement. There is too much red ink in my financial statement.
See also: ink, red
References in periodicals archive ?
Packaging inks (flexo ink for printing on packaging, such as corrugated boxes and paper containers; gravure ink for printing on packaging film for food, cosmetics and toiletries, daily goods, and other products; and metaldeco ink for printing on metal, such as beverage cans) are expected to register steady demand in coming years on the back of steady demand of packaged goods.
The FDA discovered the ink contamination during its FY2018-2019 inspection of tattoo distributors and manufacturers as well as analysis of the tattoo inks and survey results.
"Throughout all the profound changes in the business environment that have occurred during our long history, we have never waned from our commitment to product quality, social responsibility, and compliance," said Tadao Arai, president and representative director, Megami Ink Manufacturing Co., Ltd.
Thus, in its original context, shading means more than just dark-light arrangement: It is the basis for the beautiful nuance in tonality found in East Asian ink wash painting and brush-and-ink calligraphy.
For digital textile printing Stork Prints has introduced a series of inks called NEBULA (for Kyocera printheads) and FLARE (for Epson printheads).
"To come up with one ink system that covers all of these different substrates would be a great thing." Krstulic says.
For more details on the Printing inks report, contact The Freedonia Group at 440.684.9600,, or
For testing the ink adhesion onto the printing substrate, i.e.
Fully automatic ink viscosity control systems, static control, corona discharge, as well as flame treatment and uv curing.
The Ink Filling Stations will be installed in nearly 50 Chicago-area OfficeMax stores and will be rolled out to other stores across the country throughout 2006.
The logical choice for this application was an ink jet marking system.
Now some ink components--particularly heavy metals--have raised concerns.
Linx Printing Technologies plc has expanded its range of high contrast pigmented inks with the introduction of Linx High-opacity grey ink 1310, for use with the Linx 6800 Spectrum printer.
company developed the electronic ink over the past several years.