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eyeball-to-eyeball

Definition

eyeball-to-eyeball rate
(Expression) Up-close, looking someone directly in the eye - i.e., confrontational, no wiggle room or evasion possible.
Usage: E.g., in Dean Rusk's famous description of the Cuban Missile Crisis: "We're eyeball-to-eyeball, and I think the other guy just blinked." And his hilarity when Andrei Gromyko got this Americanism wrong: "We were ball-to-ball ... ."


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