(the) next thing (one) knows

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(the) next thing (one) knows

All of a sudden; out of nowhere; without warning. I was standing in line, minding my own business, when the next thing I know, a gunman runs into the bank and starts screaming at us to get on the ground! Tammy had only been on a few dates with Mark, but this one had been going smoothly. Next thing she knew, he got on one knee and proposed to her.
See also: know, next, thing
References in periodicals archive ?
H, by email THE next thing you know the Tories will be proposing children go down the pits again as slave labour - just as my forefathers did.
I have tried to talk sense into these rascally adults,'' said 15-year old Zack Dude, ``but once they get something in their heads, well, the next thing you know, they're all over each other.
The next thing you know, you've ingested sake and martinis and wake up with a hangover, coupled with a tattoo and an orange safety cone stuck to your car's radiator.
I'd be drinking my Pisco Sour, enjoying a pleasant meal, and the next thing you know I'd talked about complete bullshit for five hours straight.
The next thing you know, the Supreme Court has fobbed off the parliamentarians.
Then a Shi'ite majority would prevail and they would "go in for shariah [Islamic law], and the next thing you know, you've got a mini-Iran in there.
During the 1998 Games, "I was in the lowly rinks of Connecticut, watching it on TV, and then the next thing you know, three and a half years later--I can't even believe I'm here," Chu says.
Sometimes you buy a system and the next thing you know it's so massive that it takes a lot of time before you realize any benefit from it.
He'll be down by five points, and then the next thing you know, he's pinning the guy.
Satva DJ battle, and the next thing you know you're finger painting at the funny farm.
One of O'Reilly's comments was, "If we pass this, the next thing you know, we'll have guys wanting to marry basset hounds.
Though she can't stand these lecherous wastrels, Pursy purposefully moves in, does some straightening up, and the next thing you know the men are cleaning up their acts a little, too, and tutoring their dropout charge toward her high-school diploma.
Our skate shoes coupled with our obvious American-ness finally forced a connection, and the next thing you know we were on the business end of Matty's sales pitch.
Remember those old Judy Garland--Mickey Rooney movies in which the youngsters would innocently decide to "put on a show" and the next thing you know they'd be doing full-scale Busby Berkeley musical numbers--in a barn?
You can use the bank, you can use the backboards, and the next thing you know you get the ball closer.