can't make head or tail of

(redirected from tails of)

can't make head or tail of

Also can't make heads or tails of. Fail to understand, be quite confused about, as in I can't make head or tail of these directions. A version of this term dates back to Roman times, when Cicero wrote Ne caput nec pedes ("neither head nor feet") to describe confusion. In the current idiom the precise allusion is unclear: head and tail may mean top and bottom, beginning and end, or the two sides of a coin. [Second half of 1600s]
See also: head, make, of, tail
References in classic literature ?
said the watches of the boys, and the little gilt repeaters on the tails of the cat and pig.
The arms and tails of these animals are re-formed by renewal; and in seven years the tail of Bouguer's cuttlefish has no doubt had time to grow.
In lab experiments, big brown bats struck at the tails of luna moths (Actias luna) instead of other body parts 55 percent of the time.
According to Persons, the final vertebrae in the tails of a group of dinosaurs called oviraptors were fused together forming a ridged, blade-like structure.
Tails of smaller geckos are thinner and appear less likely to interfere with locomotion.
After mosquito engorgement, the tips of the tails of 29 mice were severed and immediately homogenized in 300 [micro]L of Eagle's minimal essential medium (MEM) supplemented with 20% fetal bovine serum (FBS) in a Mixer Mill 300 (Retsch Inc.
Fred, a rabbit, greatly admires the tails of his many friends.
Due to this information the agency will order ultrasound inspections of the tails of those Airbus aircraft that have either hit turbulence or have had sharp rudder movements, reported The Associated Press.
The tails of long-tailed rodents occasionally are injured or severed when a sprung trap door comes into contact with them.
With each haul, long-hidden inhabitants of the Amazon, the largest tropical river system on Earth, are coming to light, including oddities like transparent catfish and electric fish that subsist solely on the tails of other electric fish.
Scott Persons from the University of Alberta began studying the tails of various species of Oviraptor as part of a larger study on the tails of all theropods, a group of dinosaurs related closely to modern-day birds.
Another spacecraft, the Solar and Heliospheric Observatory, had previously seen hints that CMEs disrupted the tails of two other comets.
The last page of the book, The Tail End, gives brief factual in formation about the tails of each featured animal and how they are used in the context of the animal's life.
The U of A paleontology student began his research by comparing the tails of modern-day reptiles like crocodiles and Komodo dragons to T.
Destination Foundation has announced that microsoftSF and Metreon -- A Sony Entertainment Center will, for the second year, sponsor and host Tails of The City, a truly unique, only-in-San Francisco exhibition, auction and event benefiting Destination Foundation.