killing


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kill the clock

In sports, to protect a lead by using up as much possible time that remains in a game or match without giving the opposing team a chance to score, generally by maintaining a passive or defensive strategy. With just a narrow two-point lead, the home team is trying to kill the clock to hold out for a win. I don't know, Jim, there's a lot of game time left for them to start killing the clock.
See also: clock, kill

kill (one)self

1. To commit suicide. Once John realized he had begun to have thoughts of killing himself, he decided to seek help.
2. To bring about one's death by performing a particular action. This phrase can be said when one's life is or could be in danger, but it is often used figuratively. I can hardly breathe—I'm going to kill myself if I go back on the treadmill right now! If they try driving home in this snow, they'll kill themselves—tell them to get a hotel room for the night.
3. To overexert oneself. Don't kill yourself trying to get the report done tonight—it's not due until next week anyway.
See also: kill

kill two birds with one stone

To complete, achieve, or take care of two tasks at the same time or with a singular series of actions; to solve two problems with one action or solution. I might as well kill two birds with one stone and drop off my tax forms while I'm at the mall for the computer part I need. Bike-to-work schemes are a great way of killing two birds with one stone: getting more exercise while cutting down on the cost of your daily commute.
See also: bird, kill, one, stone, two

kill the goose that lays the golden egg(s)

To ruin or destroy something that brings one wealth. Firing the programmer who created your most successful app is like killing the goose that lays the golden egg.
See also: golden, goose, kill, lay, that

kill the fatted calf

To prepare a lavish celebration, often to welcome someone back from a long absence. The phrase comes from the Biblical parable of the prodigal son, in which a father prepares a feast for his son who has returned home after squandering his fortune. My daughter is coming home from college for the summer, so we're going to kill the fatted calf and have a huge barbecue.
See also: calf, fat, kill

kill time

To engage in an activity, usually a rather aimless or idle one, with the goal of making time seem to pass more quickly or less slowly. I'm going to walk down to the bookstore to kill time before my flight. Do you want anything? It used to be that people killed time at the train station by talking to each other, but now everyone is nose-deep in their phone.
See also: kill, time

kill (one) with kindness

To harm, inconvenience, or bother one by treating them with excessive favor or kindness. The phrase originated as the expression "kill with kindness as fond apes do their young," referring to the notion that such animals sometimes crushed their offspring by hugging them too hard. I love talking to Grandma, but she calls me twice a day to see how I'm doing—right now she's killing me with kindness.
See also: kill, kindness

go at something like a boy killing snakes

Rur. to do something with a great deal of energy. Once Mary decided to take that test, she went at her books like a boy killing snakes. I hired Joe to weed my garden, and he went at it like a boy killing snakes.
See also: boy, killing, like, snake

kill the fatted calf

Fig. to prepare an elaborate banquet (in someone's honor). (From the biblical story recounting the return of the prodigal son.) When Bob got back from college, his parents killed the fatted calf and threw a great party. Sorry this meal isn't much, John. We didn't have time to kill the fatted calf.
See also: calf, fat, kill

kill time

Fig. to use something up, especially time. I killed time reading a novel. The employees were not encouraged to kill time.
See also: kill, time

kill two birds with one stone

Fig. to solve two problems at one time with a single action. John learned the words to his part in the play while peeling potatoes. He was killing two birds with one stone. I have to cash a check and make a payment on my bank loan. I'll kill two birds with one stone by doing them both in one trip to the bank.
See also: bird, kill, one, stone, two

make a killing

Fig. to have a great success, especially in making money. John has got a job selling insurance. He's not exactly making a killing. Bill made a killing at the racetrack yesterday.
See also: killing, make

something is killing someone

Fig. something is causing someone pain. Wow, my feet are killing me!
See also: killing

kill the fatted calf

Prepare for a joyful occasion or a warm welcome. For example, When Bill comes home from his trip to Korea we're going to kill the fatted calf. This expression alludes to the parable of the prodigal son (Luke 15:11-32), whose father welcomed him by serving the choicest calf after his return. [Early 1600s]
See also: calf, fat, kill

kill time

Pass time aimlessly. For example, There was nothing to do, so I sat around killing time until dinner was ready. This idiom was first recorded about 1768.
See also: kill, time

kill two birds with one stone

Achieve two ends with a single effort, as in As long as I was in town on business, I thought I'd kill two birds and visit my uncle too . This expression is so well known that it is often shortened, as in the example. [c. 1600]
See also: bird, kill, one, stone, two

make a killing

Enjoy a large and quick profit, as in They made a killing in real estate. This expression alludes to a hunter's success. [Slang; late 1800s]
See also: killing, make

more than one way to skin a cat

More than one method to reach the same end, as in We can get around that by renting instead of buying a computer-there's more than one way to skin a cat . This expression may be an American version of the earlier British more ways of killing a cat, but why the death of a cat should be alluded to at all is not clear. [Second half of 1800s]
See also: cat, more, one, skin, way

kill two birds with one stone

If you kill two birds with one stone, you manage to achieve two things at the same time. We can talk about Union Hill while I get this business over with. Kill two birds with one stone, so to speak. He had been on his way to the vegetable man's van, both to purchase some cucumbers for his mother and — to kill two birds with one stone — to seek out Mr Halloran.
See also: bird, kill, one, stone, two

kill the fatted calf

If you kill the fatted calf, you do everything you can to welcome back a person who has been away for a period of time. He went away for year, and when he returned, his family didn't exactly kill the fatted calf. Note: This expression comes from the story of the prodigal son which is told by Jesus in the Bible (Luke 5:3-32). In this story, a young man returns home after wasting all the money his father has given him. However, his father is so pleased to see him that he celebrates his return by killing a calf and preparing a feast.
See also: calf, fat, kill

make a killing

COMMON If someone makes a killing, they make a large profit very quickly and easily. The boss of Britain's top pizza company made a killing yesterday by selling off some of his shares. If there is uncertainty about future gold prices, you could be lucky and make a killing.
See also: killing, make

kill the fatted calf

produce a lavish celebratory feast.
The allusion is to the New Testament story of the prodigal son (Luke 15:11–32), in which the forgiving father orders his best calf to be killed in order to provide a feast to celebrate the return of his wayward son. Fatted is an archaic form of the verb fat meaning ‘make or become fat’. Nowadays we use the forms fatten and fattened .
See also: calf, fat, kill

kill time

do things to make time seem to pass more quickly and to avoid getting bored, especially while waiting for something.
See also: kill, time

kill two birds with one stone

achieve two aims at once.
See also: bird, kill, one, stone, two

make a killing

have a great financial success, especially on a stock exchange.
See also: killing, make

ˌkill the fatted ˈcalf

welcome home somebody who has been away for a long time by having a big celebration: My brother’s coming home tomorrow, so I expect my parents will be killing the fatted calf for him.This is from a story in the Bible, in which a father arranges a special meal when his son returns to the family after a long time away. A fatted calf is a young cow that has been given extra food to make it fat.
See also: calf, fat, kill

kill two birds with one ˈstone

manage to achieve two aims by doing one thing: If we have to go to Manchester for the meeting, then let’s visit Auntie Joan on the way there. We can kill two birds with one stone.
See also: bird, kill, one, stone, two

ˌmake a ˈkilling

(informal) make a lot of money quickly: He was clever. He invested a lot of money in property. When prices went up, he made a killing. OPPOSITE: lose your shirt
See also: killing, make

killing

n. a great financial success. Sally made a real killing in the stock market.

make a killing

tv. to make an enormous profit; to become an enormous success. I wanted to make a killing as a banker, but it didn’t work out.
See also: killing, make

kill the fatted calf

To hold a celebration, usually a long-awaited homecoming. Luke 15:23 describes the return of the prodigal son as, “And bring here the fatted calf, and kill it; and let us eat, and be merry . . .” Although the guest of honor in the biblical parable was a wastrel whose father welcomed home, “to kill the fatted calf” can refer to a party for anyone whom the host is pleased to see.
See also: calf, fat, kill
References in periodicals archive ?
forces and were instead just killed as unintended victims of jittery soldiers shooting up Baghdad, these killings are evidence of a depraved indifference to human life--resulting from the stress of fighting a prolonged war against a civilian population, with no clear goals or exit strategy.
While this may have implications for Renaissance readers, who, like Milton, participated in some way in killing the king, or who voyeuristically shared in Throckmorton's exhibition and discredit by reading Spenser, where this kind of ethical criticism takes us is not altogether clear.
The only thing keeping the sides from killing each other is the indefinite presence of several thousand peacekeepers.
May 19: Suicide bomber blows himself up in a market in Netanya, killing three other people and wounding at least 35.
As the officer waited for the arrival of a transport vehicle, the woman removed a small-caliber handgun from inside her shirt and shot the officer in the head, killing him instantly.
How the military increases the killing rate of soldiers in combat is instructive, because our culture today is doing the same thing to our children.
But opponents of the wolf-kill plan, including conservationists and many wildlife biologists, are outraged at the notion of killing one species to save another.
Few suicides, accidental killings, or acquaintance murders are the result of cop-killer bullets or machine guns.
Sarah Marsland 86 07/08/78 At home Unlawful killing
In the end, it was Basma's 16-year-old brother who pulled the trigger, killing her.
Juveniles' killing peers or family members remains one of the most frustrating and complex categories of violence.
Could a gay playboy from San Diego have left a bloody trail of bodies on a cross-country killing spree?
THE ACT OF KILLING MAY BE DEEMED good or bad, depending on who kills whom and why.
Because his crimes were so heinous, and because he repeatedly said that he wanted to be hanged and rebuffed any efforts to prevent it, many feel that we who oppose the death penalty were wrong in trying to prevent the state from killing him.
The Cat Welfare Society of Israel (CWSI) today called on officials of the Israeli government to stop the mass killing of feral cats in the Sharon Region north of Tel Aviv.