couldn't (do something) to save (one's) life

(redirected from to save our lives)

couldn't (do something) to save (one's) life

slang Cannot do something well or at all. Ugh, this art assignment is so annoying—I couldn't draw an apple to save my life. Rachel is so selfish! She couldn't consider another person's feelings to save her life.
See also: life, save

to save one's life

Even if one's life depended on it, as in I couldn't eat another bite to save my life, or Betty wouldn't climb a mountain to save her life. This hyperbolic expression nearly always follows a negative statement that one wouldn't or couldn't do something. Anthony Trollope used a slightly different wording in The Kellys and the O'Kellys (1848): "I shan't remain long, if it was to save my life and theirs; I can't get up small talk for the rector and his curate."
See also: life, save

to save your life

used in various expressions, especially can't (or couldn't ) do something to save your life , to indicate that the person in question is very incompetent at doing something.
The first recorded use of this expression is by Anthony Trollope in The Kellys and O'Kellys ( 1848 ): ‘If it was to save my life and theirs, I can't get up small talk for the rector and his curate’.
See also: life, save
References in periodicals archive ?
"I think we can only thank them (security personnel) as they risked their lives to save our lives. I would like to give this suggestion that the people who save our lives like army officers, ATS officers, police, navy, air force, should be provided with better protective gear and equipment to help them save themselves while fighting for us," he said.