stare (off) into space

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stare (off) into space

To stare vacantly or absentmindedly at nothing in particular, usually while one is preoccupied with or distracted by thoughts of something else. I sat at the back of class, staring off into space, when suddenly the solution came to me. He just stared into space as his parents lectured him on the importance of paying attention during class.
See also: space, stare

look/stare/gaze into ˈspace

look straight in front of you without looking at a particular thing, usually because you are thinking about something: I asked her twice if she was ready to leave but she just sat there staring into space.
See also: gaze, look, space, stare
References in classic literature ?
After she had read it, she sat, staring into space; and when Stella had gone she smoothed out the crumpled manuscript.
Also in trains, and while queuing for services, some Kenyans will be busy staring into space instead of reading something.
I appreciated the inclusion of 'sitting still and quiet for ages': the child is shown dressed in fairy wings sitting staring into space on a tree branch, dreaming up new stories.
I noticed that she spent a lot of time sitting and staring into space.
Comedian Steve Brown's Sunday stand-up performance was cut short after he called out a man "staring into space" in the crowd.
'I saw Brendan staring into space because his friend, David, was in a coma.
He had a simple solution - sitting in the park, quietly staring into space until he felt better.
I'm also going to launch a website called Staring into Space, because I want to talk about the importance of just sitting with your thoughts.
In the opening scene Drake (Jerome Flynn) finds Reid looking a bit rough sitting on a beach and staring into space. He's clearly not had a shave for a while.
If only..." says the sinister ex police chief Paul Maisonneuve, who spends a lot of time staring into space while gripping his walking stick like he's about to belt someone with it.
Nicky said: "She told me Olivia was staring into space. The woman was screaming at the driver to stop.
The twenty-second teaser shows Haifa in a red checkered shirt with a cigarette in hand, while staring into space in a run-down room.
There are, of course, some families who ban TV altogether at Christmas time and it isn't so people can talk more as they seem to sit staring into space or overdo the drinking and eating and play with their mobile phones.