wrench

(redirected from wrenchingly)
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gut-wrenching

Agonizing; extremely distressing, unpleasant, or emotionally disturbing; having a severe effect on one's feelings. What a gut-wrenching loss for the young athlete, who poured her heart and soul into this match. Kids today are so desensitized that images of violence their grandparents would have found gut-wrenching now barely even register a response.

put a (monkey) wrench in(to) the works

To disrupt, foil, or cause problems to a plan, activity, or project. Primarily heard in US. We had everything in line for the party, but having the caterer cancel on us at the last minute really threw a wrench in the works! It'll really put a monkey wrench into the works if the board decides not to increase our funding for this project.
See also: put, work, wrench

monkey wrench

1. A type of wrench that has adjustable jaws. Pass me that monkey wrench, will you? I need to get a hold of this nut here.
2. Something that causes problems or disruptions. Ellen's flight getting delayed really threw a monkey wrench into our plans for the day. This rain has sure put a monkey wrench into our pool party!
See also: monkey, wrench

throw a (monkey) wrench in(to) the works

To disrupt, foil, or cause problems to a plan, activity, or project. We had everything in line for the party, but having the caterer cancel on us at the last minute really threw a wrench in the works! It'll really throw a monkey wrench into the works if the board decides not to increase our funding for this project.
See also: throw, work, wrench

throw a monkey wrench in(to) (something)

To disrupt, foil, or cause problems to a plan, activity, or project. Primarily heard in US. We had everything in line for the party, but having the caterer cancel on us at the last minute really threw a monkey wrench into our plans! It'll really throw a monkey wrench in the works if the board decides not to increase our funding for this project.
See also: monkey, throw, wrench

wrench (someone or something) (away) from (someone or something)

1. To take someone or something away from someone or something by pulling in a violent, wrenching manner. The man has been hailed as a hero for wrenching the gun away from the shooter before anyone was harmed. The officers wrenched my son from me before I had the chance to run.
2. To manage to obtain control or possession of something through some battle, struggle, or conflict with someone or something else. The rebels wrenched power from the dictatorship after five years of war. The political party finally managed to wrench control of congress away from their opponents for the first time in 10 years. You'll have to wrench the kids away from me in the courts.
3. To obtain or extract something, such as information, from someone or something, especially after much difficulty or persistence. We were finally able to wrench some answers from the spy we were interrogating. I've never been able to wrench any meaning away from abstract paintings—they always look just like splatters of paint to me.
See also: wrench

wrench off

To take someone or something away from someone or something by pulling or prying in a violent, wrenching manner. A noun or pronoun is used between "wrench" and "off." He walked over to the headstone and wrenched off the medallion that had been embedded in the marble. The man has been hailed as a hero for wrenching the gun off of the shooter before anyone was harmed. The officers wrenched my son off me before I had the chance to run.
See also: off, wrench

wrench out

1. To remove or take away someone or something by pulling or prying in a violent, wrenching manner. A noun or pronoun is used between "wrench" and "out." He wrenched the gun out of the attacker's hands. I managed to wrench the iron bar out of the cement before it had set completely.
2. To obtain or extract something, such as information, from someone or something, especially after much difficulty or persistence. We were finally able to wrench some answers out of the spy we were interrogating. I've never been able to wrench any meaning out of abstract paintings—they always look just like splatters of paint to me. I wrenched out a confession from Tommy after threatening to take his video games away for a year.
See also: out, wrench

left-handed monkey wrench

A fictional tool, typically used to trick someone who is new to a field or industry. If you want to mess with the new kid, ask him to go get you a left-handed monkey wrench, then watch him scour the truck for the next hour looking for one.
See also: monkey, wrench

throw a monkey wrench in the works

Fig. to cause problems for someone's plans. I don't want to throw a monkey wrench in the works, but have you checked your plans with a lawyer? When John suddenly refused to help us, he really threw a monkey wrench in the works.
See also: monkey, throw, work, wrench

wrench something from someone

to grab or twist something out of someone's grasp. The policeman wrenched the gun from Lefty's hand and called for his partner. Max wrenched the wallet from Jed's hand and fled with it.
See also: wrench

wrench something off (of) someone or something

 and wrench something off
to yank or twist something off someone or something. (Of is usually retained before pronouns.) He wrenched the shoes off the sleeping man and ran away. He wrenched off the catsup bottle cap.
See also: off, wrench

wrench something out of something

to yank or twist something out of something. The policeman wrenched the gun out of Lefty's hand and told Lefty to put his hands up. Tom wrenched the bone out of the dog's mouth and threw it away.
See also: of, out, wrench

throw a monkey wrench into

Sabotage or frustrate a project or plans, as in The boss threw a monkey wrench into our plans when he said we'd have to work Saturday. This transfer of industrial sabotage-that is, throwing a tool inside machinery-to other subjects dates from the early 1900s.
See also: monkey, throw, wrench

throw a wrench into the works

or

throw a monkey wrench into the works

AMERICAN
If someone or something throws a wrench into the works or throws a monkey wrench into the works, they cause problems which prevent something from happening in the way that was planned. Of course they may not sign the agreement by the sixteenth and that would throw a monkey wrench into the works. Note: Instead of saying the works, people often describe the situation in which the problem is caused. Most health-related problems, of course, are not life-threatening, but they can throw a wrench into an otherwise pleasant holiday. The US delegation threw a giant monkey wrench into the process this week by raising all sorts of petty objections. Note: The usual British expression is throw a spanner in the works.
See also: throw, work, wrench

left-handed monkey wrench

n. a nonexistent tool. (see also sky hook.) Hand me the left-handed monkey wrench, huh?
See also: monkey, wrench

wrench

n. a mechanic. (Possibly from Mr. Goodwrench.) I gotta get my ride in and have a wrench look at the serpentine.

monkey wrench in the works, put/throw a

Sabotage an operation or plan. The monkey wrench, called an “adjustable spanner” in Britain, appears to have reminded someone of a monkey’s jaws, which loosely resemble the sliding jaws of this very useful tool. This name was acquired about the middle of the nineteenth century. It was not until the early twentieth century that it became associated with sabotage. This suggestion first appeared in print in 1920 in Philander Johnson’s story, Shooting Stars: “Don’t throw a monkey-wrench into the machinery!” The locution not only caught on in America but was adopted in Britain as well, although in the form of throw a spanner in the works.
See also: monkey, put, throw, wrench
References in periodicals archive ?
A wrenchingly intimate look at how South Africa's postapartheid society has meted out compassion rather than rough justice--or "restoration instead of retribution," as TRC chairman Desmond Tutu has put it--the 94-minute film took 2 1/2 years and eight trips to the African nation to complete.
It was just that he reckoned, and this was something to do with biorhythms, that following six weeks plus of freedom, kids and teachers alike were so wrenchingly affected by the re-imposed discipline of school routine that the process of adjustment was unnecessarily painful.
But her plans go awry when she falls in love with Jack Ireland a wrenchingly handsome man whose loyalty lies first with his work as a detective and only second to the people he loves.
Doug Stone's "Sealed for Freshness," which is having its West Coast premiere in an Actors Cabaret of Eugene production directed by Joe Zingo, is subtitled "A Tupperware Party Gone Awry." It goes awry both hilariously and wrenchingly. Five ostensibly different women find out, sadly, that they have much more in common than a penchant for plastic containers.
People don't realise the gut- wrenchingly destructive pressures such a job exerts on any semblance of a normal life.
Continuing the spirit of wrenchingly funny kinfolk trilogy "The Family Album," "Intimate Stranger" and "Nobody's Business," fearlessly self-revealing documaker Alan Berliner turns the camera on himself in "The Sweetest Sound." Exploration of what's in a name has all the crowd-pleasing, wide-eyed wryness of previous work, which means phone will ring for fests, cable and homevid.
As Brandon Teena--the young female-to-male transsexual who tried to live as a man in small-town Nebraska and who was killed for her trouble--Swank is wrenchingly believable.
But it is also wallet wrenchingly thirsty and as the speedo zips up, the fuel gauge rockets downwards.
The Reverend Alex Forsyth told mourners at Private Scott McArdle's funeral that it was 'a heart- wrenchingly sad, but proud day'.
Opposition MSPs called on the Crown Office to appeal the case, which they described as ``gut wrenchingly appalling'' and ``repugnant''.
THE grovelling TV apology by Stephen Byers' special adviser Jo Moore was gut- wrenchingly insincere.
The credit, of course, must be shared among writer Tim Clague, 22, whose script was the inaugural winner of the new Jerwood Film Prize (the judging panel included Emma Thompson, the Coen brothers and Anthony Minghella); 8-year-old actor Jack Langan-Evans, whose open-faced exuberance nonetheless allows, wrenchingly, for grief; and even Rodgers and Hammerstein, though one could argue that the use of "You'll Never Walk Alone" (from "Carousel") signals "Eight's" only slide into mawkishness.
The explosions and combat footage are wrenchingly realistic.