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Re: "draw a clear bead"

Posted by Bob on April 07, 2004

In Reply to: Re: "Draw a clear bead" posted by MichaelFR on April 06, 2004

: : : Out of a novel by Elmore Leonard (Maximum Bob):
: : : "He had to push her aside to slide the glass door open enough to draw a clear bead on the gator, Jesus Christ, a big one he estimated to run ten or twelve feet."
: : : What's the exact meaning of "draw a clear bead". I understand it, but I prefer get wise advice. Besides, could this be also related somehow to shooting a weapon (the guy sliding the door open is holding a gun)?
: : : I ask this because E. Leonard is quite good (and often) using double meaning words or idioms. Thanks.

: : One meaning for bead is "a small metal knob on a firearm used as a front sight." (Merriam-Webster online)

: Thanks, the double meaning of it is becoming crystal clear...

Drawing a bead = taking careful aim. It's also used metaphorically. (I'm of the opinion, and I'm not alone, that Elmore Leonard writes dialog better than almost anyone.)