2

Please help me to understand sentence '' You’re a gnat’s ass away from having this conversation behind bars.'' to in the following dialog in movie ''Headlock'' (about minute 26 to 27).

PETER TO TESS: Are you fucking kidding me?! You’re a gnat’s ass away from having this conversation behind bars. Do you realize that? Jesus Christ, Tess. What are you trying to accomplish here?

TESS TO PETER: What is this trying to accomplish, Peter.

PETER TO TESS: I’m following procedure! TESS TO PETER: Procedure? Don’t give me those company bullshit lines!

15

A gnat is a small insect. The "ass" of a gnat would be even smaller. "Behind bars" is a common idiom for someone being in prison or in jail.

So, Peter is saying that Tess narrowly avoided being in jail/prison, and if she had failed to avoid that, jail/prison is where their conversation would be taking place

| improve this answer | |
  • Good answer, you might want to provide a link showing that gnat's ass is a common idiom for an extremely small measurement or tight tolerance, such as this one... worldwidewords.org/qa/qa-wit2.htm – barbecue Jul 10 at 17:48
  • 1
    side note: a very close substitute for gnat's ass is 'a hair's breadth' – eps Jul 10 at 20:26

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.