kilter


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Related to kilter: out of kilter
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be off-kilter

1. To be out of equilibrium; to not be straight, level, or aligned properly; to be in a state of chaos or confusion. I've been off-kilter ever since I got that blow to the head during football practice. The economy is still off-kilter in many countries across Europe, even as the global economy has started to recover.
2. To not be working correctly or properly; to be out of order; to be out of w(h)ack. It sounds like your car's engine is a bit off-kilter. I'd recommend taking it to a mechanic before you go for any long drives.

be out of kilter

1. To be out of equilibrium; to not be straight, level, or aligned properly; to be in a state of chaos or confusion. I've been out of kilter ever since I got that blow to the head during football practice. The economy is still out of kilter in many countries across Europe, even as the global economy has started to recover.
2. To not work correctly or properly; to be out of order; to be out of w(h)ack. It sounds like your car's engine is a bit out of kilter. I'd recommend taking it to a mechanic before you go for any long drives.
See also: kilter, of, out

feel off-kilter

To not feel good or normal; to feel abnormal or out of equilibrium, either physically or psychologically. Sorry, I've been feeling a bit off-kilter lately. I think I just need some time to myself. It's normal to feel off-kilter for a while after you travel overseas.
See also: feel

feel out of kilter

To not feel good or normal; to feel abnormal or out of equilibrium, either physically or psychologically. Sorry, I've been feeling a bit out of kilter lately. I think I just need some time to myself. It's normal to feel out of kilter for a while after you travel overseas.
See also: feel, kilter, of, out

get off-kilter

1. To become out of equilibrium; to become not straight, level, or aligned properly; to be in a state of chaos or confusion. Between my divorce, the death of my best friend, and the financial troubles at work, it seems like everything in my life has gotten off-kilter recently. John got a little off-kilter after being knocked in the head in football practice earlier.
2. To stop working correctly or properly; to be or become out of order; to be out of w(h)ack. It sounds like your car's engine has gotten a bit off-kilter. I'd recommend taking it to a mechanic before you go for any long drives.
See also: get

get out of kilter

1. To become out of equilibrium; to become not straight, level, or aligned properly; to be in a state of chaos or confusion. Between my divorce, the death of my best friend, and the financial troubles at work, it seems like everything in my life has gotten out of kilter recently. John got a little out of kilter after being knocked in the head in football practice earlier.
2. To stop working correctly or properly; to be or become out of order; to be out of w(h)ack. It sounds like your car's engine has gotten a bit out of kilter. I'd recommend taking it to a mechanic before you go for any long drives.
See also: get, kilter, of, out

go off-kilter

1. To become out of equilibrium; to become not straight, level, or aligned properly; to be in a state of chaos or confusion. Between my divorce, the death of my best friend, and the financial troubles at work, it seems like everything in my life has gone off-kilter recently. The economies of nearly every country in the world went off-kilter after the economic collapse.
2. To stop working correctly or properly; to be or become out of order; to be out of w(h)ack. It sounds like your car's engine has gone a bit off-kilter. I'd recommend taking it to a mechanic before you go for any long drives.
See also: go

go out of kilter

1. To be or become out of equilibrium; to become not straight, level, or aligned properly; to be in a state of chaos or confusion. Between my divorce, the death of my best friend, and the financial troubles at work, it seems like everything in my life has gone out of kilter recently. The economies of nearly every country in the world went out of kilter after the economic collapse.
2. To stop working correctly or properly; to be or become out of order; to be out of w(h)ack. It sounds like your car's engine has gone a bit out of kilter. I'd recommend taking it to a mechanic before you go for any long drives.
See also: go, kilter, of, out

off-kilter

1. Out of equilibrium; not straight, level, or aligned properly; in a state of confusion or chaos. I felt a bit off-kilter for a while after receiving that blow to the head during football practice. The economy has remained off-kilter in many countries across Europe, even as the global economy has started to recover. Between my divorce, the death of my best friend, and the financial troubles at work, it seems like everything in my life has gone off-kilter recently.
2. Not working correctly or properly; out of order; out of w(h)ack. It sounds like your car's engine is a bit off-kilter. I'd recommend taking it to a mechanic before you go for any long drives.

out of kilter

1. Out of equilibrium; not straight, level, or aligned properly. This wall is a little out of kilter. We'll need to account for that during the renovation.
2. In a state of confusion or chaos. The economy has remained out of kilter in many countries across Europe, even as the global economy has started to recover. It seems like everything in my life has gone out of kilter recently.
3. Not working correctly or properly; out of order; out of w(h)ack. It sounds like your car's engine is a bit out of kilter. I'd recommend taking it to a mechanic before you go for any long drives.
See also: kilter, of, out

out of whack

1. Not or no longer working or functioning properly. I don't know what's wrong with it, but the computer is totally out of whack—I can't even get past the login screen. The mechanic thinks the carburetor might have been thrown out of whack in the collision.
2. In a disordered or chaotic state. My whole day has been thrown out of whack by this accident. Our production timeline is a little out of whack because of the server crash we've been dealing with.
3. Not or no longer feeling good or normal; depressed or melancholy. Sorry, I've been a bit out of whack lately. I think I just need a bit of time to myself. I think you've been cooped up inside for too long. It's important to get some sunshine and fresh air each day, or else you start feeling out of whack.
See also: of, out, whack
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

*out of kilter

 and *off-kilter 
1. Lit. out of balance; crooked or tilted. (*Typically: be ~; get ~; knock something ~.) John, your tie is sort of off-kilter. Let me fix it. Please straighten the picture on the wall. It's out of kilter.
2. Fig. malfunctioning; on the fritz. (*Typically: be ~; go ~.) My furnace is out of kilter. I have to call someone to fix it. This computer is out of kilter. It doesn't let me log on.
See also: kilter, of, out
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

out of kilter

Also, out of whack. Not properly adjusted, not working well, out of order. For example, This whole schedule is out of kilter with the rest of our projects, or The wheels on the trailer are out of whack. The first term, also spelled kelter, dates from the early 1600s and its origin is not known. The precise allusion of the variant, a colloquial term dating from the late 1800s, is also unclear. Possibly it relates to a whack, or blow, throwing something off, or some suggest, to wacky, that is, "crazy."
See also: kilter, of, out

out of whack

see under out of kilter.
See also: of, out, whack
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

out of kilter

out of harmony or balance.
Kilter , dating from the early 17th century, was a dialect word meaning ‘frame or order’. It is now used only in this phrase.
See also: kilter, of, out

out of whack

out of order; not working. North American & Australian
1998 Bookseller There's been a fair amount of jeering…at the Sunday Times for getting its figures so comprehensively out of whack, by a factor of about 100 if memory serves.
See also: of, out, whack
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

out of ˈkilter

out of harmony or balance; not working properly: Long-haul flights tend to throw your body clock out of kilter for a couple of days.
See also: kilter, of, out

out of ˈwhack

(informal, especially American English)
1 not appropriate or correct, especially in relation to something else: The Olympics have made flights and accommodation here incredibly expensive. Prices are way out of whack with normal.If you ask me, his priorities are all out of whack. He should find a job first, then decide where to live.
2 (especially of a system or machine) not working as it should: Don’t bother trying to call me on my cellphone. It’s out of whack again.
See also: of, out, whack
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

out of kilter

1. mod. not functioning properly; on the fritz; out of w(h)ack. My car’s engine is out of kilter and needs some repair work.
2. mod. out of square. That corner is not square, and the wall even looks out of kilter.
See also: kilter, of, out

out of w(h)ack

mod. out of adjustment; inoperative. (see also out of kilter.) I think my left eye is out of wack a little. Maybe I need glasses.
See also: of, out, whack
McGraw-Hill's Dictionary of American Slang and Colloquial Expressions Copyright © 2006 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved.

out of whack

Informal
Improperly ordered or balanced; not functioning correctly.
See also: of, out, whack
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

out of kilter/whack

Out of adjustment or alignment, not working properly. Kilter is an American variant of kelter, an English dialect word used since the seventeenth century to mean “in good condition.” James Lowell used it in an 1862 letter, “I must rest awhile. My brain is out of kilter.” The origin of the synonymous out of whack, dating from the late 1800s, is more mysterious. The OED suggests it may come from wacky, for “crazy,” but that is by no means certain. Both terms are used to describe malfunctioning mechanisms (“This tape recorder is out of kilter and won’t rewind”) as well as figuratively (“He may have a conscience, but if you ask me, it’s slightly out of whack”).
See also: kilter, of, out, whack
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer
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References in periodicals archive ?
Caption: Above: Behind the scenes of "Off Kilter." Left: A still of Cadilla and Sarah Murphy-Dyson from the show.
But actually, it is the Gaia view that is out of kilter, according to Peter Ward, a University of Washington paleontologist.
Speaking to The Western Mail, ahead of addressing the National Assembly today, Brian Morgan, director of the Small Firms Research Unit at Cardiff Business School, says the UK economy is now seriously out of kilter.
In the past few years, we've seen structural changes in the spending habits of Congress that could keep us off kilter. Spending by the Republican-controlled House since 1994 hasn't been any more frugal than you'd expect from a Democratic House.
Some behind-the-scenes financial cut and thrust is also believed to have helped put the relationship out of kilter. Quattrone's departure would appear to be significant, at least from a perception standpoint, given his larger-than-life reputation in Silicon Valley.
"There was something about her which was out of joint, out of kilter," wrote British journalist Andrew Wilson two days after her death.
The catch is, if you don't get there by 11 a.m., the whole damn schedule is thrown off kilter and some things just won't get done.
'Happily Lost' is pure indie scuzz and is followed by an off kilter mash of rock, jazz and funk called 'I Know What You're Looking For'.
But if Mr Cowan is looking for somewhere to hide, can I recommend Saudi Arabia whose attitude to women isn't too out of kilter with his own?
Half said the last information they were given was "vastly out of kilter" with their current lives.
He claimed: "Treating my identity as a commodity is in kilter with free market capitalism.
They are so far out of kilter with what ordinary workers can look forward to that they are shameful.
Nice though it is, I can't help thinking it's rather out of kilter with the current market.
"Off Kilter: A Woman's Journey to Peace with Scoliosis, Her Mother, & Her Polish Heritage" is the story of a woman's truly American life.