Posted by Victoria S Dennis on November 18, 2005
In Reply to: Under control posted by Bob on November 18, 2005
: : To say you got it under control would you say the phrase: "I got it down (pat, or packed)."
"Pat" as an adjective means "perfect, apposite, opportune". Thus to get a "pat hand" in poker is to get such a good set of cards in the initial deal that you don't expect to improve your hand by drawing any more cards. As an adverb you might say of an alibi, or the plot of a novel, "that's a bit too pat" meaning "too neat and convenient to be plausible"; or you can have a speech or an excuse "off pat" meaning "word-perfect". (VSD)