narrow

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narrow at the equator

Very hungry. The phrase alludes to the idea of having a slimmer midsection due to not eating. I'm so narrow at the equator—can we please get some food now?
See also: narrow

narrow escape

A situation in which danger or problems are barely avoided. That guy barely made it over the tracks before the train came. What a narrow escape!
See also: escape, narrow

the straight and narrow

A morally upright way of life. I need to stay on the straight and narrow so I don't get arrested again.
See also: and, narrow, straight

stay on the straight and narrow

To maintain a morally upright way of life; to only make choices that are considered morally and legally correct. Now that I have a conviction on my record, I really have to stay on the straight and narrow going forward. My father stayed on the straight and narrow until the day he died, and in his later life, I think he regretted never doing anything wild or unexpected when he had the chance.
See also: and, narrow, on, stay, straight

keep on the straight and narrow

To maintain a morally upright way of life; to only make choices that are considered morally and legally correct. Now that I have a conviction on my record, I really have to keep on the straight and narrow going forward. My father kept on the straight and narrow until the day he died, and in his later life, I think he regretted never doing anything wild or unexpected when he had the chance.
See also: and, keep, narrow, on, straight

narrow squeak

1. A victory or success that very nearly ended in failure. After his narrow squeak at the polls, the prime minister must find a way to instill confidence in the country at large once again. After a narrow squeak, they have managed to hold onto their league championship.
2. A situation in which danger or problems are barely avoided. We had just cleaned and tidied the fridge before the health inspector arrived. What a narrow squeak! The expedition had a very narrow squeak when an avalanche tore through the path from which they had just come.
See also: narrow, squeak

keep to the straight and narrow

Fig. to behave properly and correctly; to stay out of trouble. If you keep to the straight and narrow, you can't help but win in the end. I always keep to the straight and narrow.
See also: and, keep, narrow, straight

narrow something down (to people or things)

to reduce a list of possibilities from many to a selected few. We can narrow the choice down to green or red. We narrowed down the choice to you or Paul.
See also: down, narrow

narrow squeak

Fig. a success almost not achieved; a lucky or marginal success; a problem almost not surmounted. That was a narrow squeak. I don't know how I survived. Another narrow squeak like that and I'll give up.
See also: narrow, squeak

the straight and narrow

Fig. a straight and law-abiding route through life. (Referring to a morally rigid and correct course of behavior. Fixed order.) You should have no trouble with the police if you stick to the straight and narrow. Roger was the kind who followed the straight and narrow every day of his life.
See also: and, narrow, straight

narrow escape

A barely successful flight from or avoidance of danger or trouble, as in He had a narrow escape, since the bullet came within inches of his head. This expression uses narrow in the sense of "barely sufficient." [Late 1500s] For a newer synonym, see close call.
See also: escape, narrow

straight and narrow, the

The honest and upright way of living, as in He led a wild life when he was young, but he's been on the straight and narrow for some years . This expression is widely though to come from confusion of straight, "not crooked," with strait, "narrow," owing to a misinterpretation of a passage from the New Testament: "Strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life" (Matthew 7:14). The current phrase dates only from the first half of the 1800s.
See also: and, straight

the straight and narrow

COMMON If someone or something keeps you on the straight and narrow, they help you to live a good, honest life and prevent you from doing immoral or illegal things. He now had his faith to keep him on the straight and narrow. Note: You can also say that someone strays from the straight and narrow, meaning that they stop living a good, honest life and do something immoral or illegal. The goal is to prevent them from straying from the straight and narrow. Note: `Straight' was originally `strait', which meant `narrow'. The expression probably refers to a passage in the Bible: `Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.'(Matthew 7:14)
See also: and, narrow, straight

the straight and narrow

morally correct behaviour.
The full form of the expression is the straight and narrow path or way . It developed from a misunderstanding of Matthew 7:14, ‘strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life’, where strait is in fact being used as another word for narrow .
See also: and, narrow, straight

a narrow eˈscape/ˈsqueak

a situation where somebody only just avoids injury, danger or failure: We had a narrow escape on the way here. The wind blew a tree down just in front of us. We could have been killed.
See also: escape, narrow, squeak

keep to, stay on, etc. the ˌstraight and ˈnarrow

(informal) live your life according to strict moral principles: She’s stopped drinking and now she’s trying to stay on the straight and narrow.This phrase comes from the Bible, describing the path to Heaven.
See also: and, keep, narrow, stay, straight

narrow squeak

n. a success almost not achieved; a lucky or marginal success; a problem almost not surmounted. That was a narrow squeak. I don’t know how I survived.
See also: narrow, squeak
References in periodicals archive ?
While across the North East as a whole Labour is still running in front, just, the margin is so small that whatever hope it draws from the lead will be counter-balanced by the boost its narrowness gives to the party's rivals.
Gardner best known for his theory of multiple intelligences including musical spatial linguistic and bodily has influenced educators and others with his critique of the narrowness of IQ testing.
Suddenly 31-22 down Stour hit back with a 67th-minute try from Barkley, who broke two tackles in his run to the line to earn both the try-scoring bonus point and the one for narrowness of defeat.
Laura was stifled by the narrowness of her small town and fled to L.
These positive factors are partially counterbalanced by the narrowness of the country's economy and the system's increasing vulnerability to a real estate sector shock - exacerbated by the rapid and untested credit expansion.
I agree with Richard Willis ('Learning in the Classroom', April 2007) about the narrowness and conceptual shortcomings of the graduate teacher programme.
Yet, by emphasizing the narrowness of the students' life experiences, the narrative is intended to reveal the ultimate limits of reform strategies that stop short of full-scale integration along lines of race, ethnicity, and economic status.
As a church we have always lived in the dichotomy of the universality of the call toward and the narrowness of our discipleship in Christ.
It is an exceedingly well-written history; Mackey's storytelling ability overcomes the narrowness of the story.
The potentially claustrophobic narrowness of the interior is mitigated by not only its height, but also by the physical and visual lightness of the polycarbonate skin.
This is why the umpire is a realistic necessity, for he is willing to balance width and narrowness in the interest of locating the strike zone.
Today, influential players outside their professional boundaries want the leaders inside to change because many leaders appear trapped by the narrowness of their own historical orientation and cannot think and act from a broader context.
With the nuts gone, the show gets boring and its narrowness is starkly exposed.
Ishiguro has perfected a narratorial voice capable of rendering this story in the most affecting way; the sheer narrowness of Kathy's experience is unmistakable in her voice and increases the pathos of her existence.