against the grain

(redirected from run against the grain)

against the grain

1. In the opposite way or perpendicular to the direction of the fibers of a piece of wood (or meat), i.e. its "grain." Don't cut that wood against the grain, or it will be rough around the edges. For most cuts of steak, cookbooks recommend cutting against the grain.
2. By extension, in opposition or contrary to what is generally understood, assumed, practiced, or accepted. The artist always tried to go against the grain, ignoring the artistic trends of her day.
See also: grain
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

*against the grain

 
1. Lit. across the alignment of the fibers of a piece of wood. (*Typically: be ~; Cut ~; go ~; run ~; saw ~.) You sawed it wrong. You sawed against the grain when you should have cut with grain. You went against the grain and made a mess of your sanding.
2. Fig. running counter to one's feelings or ideas. (*Typically: be ~; go ~.) The idea of my actually taking something that is not mine goes against the grain.
See also: grain
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

against the grain

Opposed to one's inclination or preference, as in We followed the new supervisor's advice, though it went against the grain. This metaphor refers to the natural direction of the fibers in a piece of wood, called its grain; when sawed obliquely, or "against the grain," the wood will tend to splinter. [c. 1600] For a synonym, see rub the wrong way.
See also: grain
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.

against the grain

contrary to the natural inclination or feeling of someone or something.
This phrase alludes to the fact that wood is easier to cut along the line of the grain than across or against it.
See also: grain
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

against the grain

Contrary to custom, one's inclination, or good sense.
See also: grain
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.
See also:
References in periodicals archive ?
So Jubiloso's participation in Friday's Coronation Stakes - on the back of scores at Chelmsford and Newbury this spring - appears to run against the grain.
When North is held up near the flag, Biggar arrives quickly at the ensuing ruck and acts as scrum-half, throwing out a short pass which allows Hill to run against the grain through the remaining cover.
That seems to run against the grain of open access.
So their current economic problems rather run against the grain of a national reticence to get excited about things.
He also spends one chapter explaining why offensive wars of occupation run against the grain of US tradition and political culture.
Since self-purchases are often in the apparel category, that sector suffered last year and, says Delk, may well do so again this year.Even if people felt like splurging for the holidays, any boost in spending on gifts and entertaining would have to run against the grain of what remains a strong inclination toward austerity in discretionary outlays.
Drawing upon evidence from archival records and oral history, Dore makes two contentious, well-supported claims about Diriomo's past which run against the grain of the prevailing Nicaraguan and Central American historiography.
There seems to be a universal law of entropy that works against rules and wears them down when they run against the grain of common usage.
They defy existing rules, run against the grain of prevailing public opinion, raise unpleasant issues for public discussion, and demand that public or official power be exercised equitably and humanely, according to internationally accepted standards of democratic pluralism and human rights.
Your track record also has enabled you to get away with some splendidly Rudinesque traits that run against the grain in corporate Hollywood: You yell and scream a lot.
You long to say,``slow down and think again,in a couple of days none of this will matter''.That, though, would be to run against the grain of nature.
Buttner's images, which run against the grain of the "good brushstroke," attest to an obsessive desire for erasure, an impulse to subject redemptive ideologies to a painterly torture.
These cases of African American parolees in Georgia run against the grain of prevailing accounts of Georgia's prison system.
It wasn't the first time Carter had run against the grain of stereotypical expectations.