like a rabbit (caught) in (the) headlights

(redirected from rabbit caught in the headlights)

like a rabbit (caught) in (the) headlights

In a state or manner of paralyzing surprise, fear, or bewilderment. Likened to the tendency of rabbits to freeze in place in front of an oncoming vehicle. When she asked me to marry her, I could only stand there like a rabbit caught in headlights. He froze like a rabbit in the headlights when I caught him taking money out of the register.
See also: headlight, like, rabbit

like a rabbit caught in the headlights

or

like a deer caught in the headlights

If someone is like a rabbit caught in the headlights or like a deer caught in the headlights, they are so frightened or nervous that they do not know what to do. He just sat there, like a rabbit caught in the headlights. Diane fixes me with her cold, blue eyes: I am the proverbial deer caught in the headlights. Note: This expression is very variable. For example, you can just say that someone is caught or frozen in the headlights. He was caught in the headlights as he attempted to answer a string of questions about his relationship. The best thing for a writer caught in the headlights of unexpected celebrity is simply to keep writing and publishing. Note: Animals such as rabbits or deer sometimes remain still because they do not know which way to run when the light from a vehicle's headlights shines on them at night.
References in periodicals archive ?
Tory MSP Miles Briggs said: "Jeane Freeman increasingly looks like a rabbit caught in the headlights, unable to provide even the most basic information on the potential opening date for the new Sick Kids."
I wasn't really ready for the challenge of Ronnie here, I was a bit like a rabbit caught in the headlights. I thought I was ready for it and I wasn't.
Poor old Tom McGuirk looks like a rabbit caught in the headlights half the time as he's barked down by the big boys.
She's like a rabbit caught in the headlights and is forced to grow up fast to prove herself."
The opening orchestral tutti was leaden and rhythmically flabby while Barouch's playing was timid and cautious - a rabbit caught in the headlights of Mozart's blazing genius.
"Sometimes players are like a rabbit caught in the headlights in these games but most of the lads have played against FC United and know what the game is about.
She still sounded bland and looked like a rabbit caught in the headlights.
'Rabbit caught in the headlights': Our Matt gives it his all but finds it a struggle.
Dr Prasad's mind went blank after Mrs Lockham developed problems, and was "like a rabbit caught in the headlights", Mr Hulett said.
He had a very good record in Russian football where he looked big, quick and a decent finisher but throughout his entire spell at City he seemed to resemble the proverbial rabbit caught in the headlights.
Blunt, whose first album Back to Bedlam remains the biggest seller of the 21st Century, is an endearingly awkward stage performer, looking like a rabbit caught in the headlights on more than one occasion.
I thought for one befuddled moment I had fallen asleep and drifted into a telly nightmare but no, there was Magnus Magnusson firing out the questions and there was Vic in the infamous black chair looking more and more like a rabbit caught in the headlights of an approaching car.
Lynton tried hard not to sound like a rabbit caught in the headlights of a web commerce juggernaut, but didn't quite pull it off.
Then we got inside the dressing room and Wee Berti looked like a rabbit caught in the headlights. He just froze.
Full browser ?