Bullet - Figurative Uses

Figurative Uses

The word for the bullet, usually because of its speed, is sometimes used figuratively, e.g.:

  • The Bullet Ant.
  • The Japanese Bullet Trains.
  • The 350cc Royal Enfield motorcycle marketed in India is called Bullet
  • The expression "bullet-headed" for a dolichocephalic shape of an animal's head.
  • The term silver bullet, an extremely effective solution to a problem, comes from the modern addition to werewolf folklore that the monster is highly vulnerable to firearms using silver ammunition.
  • The phrase "biting the bullet", meaning (usually mental) preparation for an unpleasant task or experience, refers to a patient biting on a lead bullet put between his back teeth to brace himself for a painful medical procedure (such as the removal of a bullet or amputation of a limb) before the advent of anesthesia. This was frequently done on or behind a battlefield, where bullets would be readily available.
  • In horse racing, each track marks its fastest training session each day with a bullet in that horse's past performances.
  • In motion pictures (including television, narrative film and motion pictures and gameplay within videogames), bullet time is a digitally enhanced shot in which, first, the film's speed is reduced to extreme slow motion or, sometimes, to a static frame, and then, second, the camera rotates around the scene at normal speed, providing the viewer with a glimpse of the action from many different angles. Bullet time allows the viewer to capture action s/he would not be able to see in detail at normal speeds. It also allows the viewer to see this action from many angles that would be otherwise hidden from view. Under normal filming conditions, the person shooting the scene would have to choose one angle from which to shoot the action. Camera rotations in bullet time may vary from a relatively small angle, such as 90°, to a full 360°. The bullet time technique is often used in videogames as a convention that allows the player special abilities, such as the ability to slow down time and gain the advantage from this. The term, "bullet time," was first used in reference to the film, The Matrix, that used this technique to create a slow motion shot of a series of fired bullets in which the camera circled around the bullets and their intended target.
  • The expression "catching a bullet in his teeth" comes from reports of sleight-of-hand magician Benjamin Perry Covington, who was said to have caught three bullets in his teeth fired from three different guns fired by volunteers in a New York magic act in the early 1920s.
  • The expression "shooting blanks" is used idiomatically to refer to male sterility. A blank round contains no projectile (and thus very little lethality), much like the semen of an infertile man contains no viable sperm.
  • In no limit holdem poker, "bullets" is one of the names given to the starting hand of AA; other names include "American Airlines" and "Pocket Rockets".
  • "Bullet points" are a form of marking available in various typefaces, usually used in the leading margin of a paragraph or section to differentiate among subpoints made within the overall paragraph typically in the form of a list, as demonstrated by the markings to the left of each of the various subpoints in this section entitled "Figurative Uses". They resemble the holes left in paper targets by bullets.

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Famous quotes containing the word figurative:

    Church neglect
    And figurative use have pretty well
    Reduced him to a shadow of himself.
    Robert Frost (1874–1963)