Skip a beat?

8 replies
Hello!

Can you tell me what is the meaning of this idiom. Can it mean omit or fail to take into consideration?
Thanks
Contributing Member1,266
Hello, Antonia!
Could you provide some context, please?
It originally refers to the heart, when you have a sudden emotion (fear, surprise etc...), it skips a beat, it stops beating for a second.
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Hi Pieanne,

The sisier of the victim is interrogating a suspect. She is also a detective. He is trying to provoke her. Another woman is missing, the suspect's ex girlfriend. He says to her that his girlfriend had tried to kill herself. The detective doesn't wan't to reveal her reaction to that or her true emotions because she is trying to trick him into saying sth that might be a lead or a clue..
(suspect says) ''She tried to kill herself before.''
Lena (the detective) did not skip a beat. ''Yes, I know. Slit her wrists.'' (she is bluffing, she doesn't know that).
Hello Antonia,

'skip a beat' means to get suddenly excited, or scared, it's up to you to draw the conclution.Cheers
Full Member186
Hi Antonia,

All the explanations so far have been correct for "skip a beat". However, I think that in this particular context, it is a reference to music.[8] The detective carried on without pause; she showed no hesitation or surprise.

(Had she shown surprise, she could not have bluffed effectively)
Senior Member2,657
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I always think of an LP with a scratch, when I hear this phrase.

The needle jumps, and you lose a beat of the music.

MrP
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Thank you all for your descriptive explanations.
The negative form "Didn't skip a beat" is a musical metaphor. When a music piece is performed without skipping any beat, it is continuous and fluid. The phrase "didn't skip a beat" means "didn't stop", "relentless", "without pausing", "unhesitating", "unrelenting" etc.

The positive form "Skip a beat", however, has to do more with the heart. The phrase "my heart skips a beat" means "I am shocked", "stunned", or "scared".
Junior Member89
Thank you, it's very important to me to know the exact meaning, because it bears different connotations.
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