to do a double take

Idiom Definition

Idiom Definition - do a double take

"to do a double take"

to react with surprise;

to have to look twice to make sure that you really saw correctly


Related words and phrases:

Idiom Scenario 1

Idiom Definition - do a double take

Two colleagues are talking ...

Colleague 1:  You were a little late getting to work this morning.

Colleague 2:  Traffic was really slow. I saw an elephant on the freeway.

Colleague 1:  Are you sure?  An elephant on the freeway?

Colleague 2:  I had to do a double take. I couldn't believe it myself but when I looked again, sure enough, it was an elephant. I tuned in the news on the radio to discover that an elephant had escaped from a travelling circus.

Idiom Scenario 2

Idiom Definition - do a double take

Two friends are talking ...

Friend 1:  I thought I saw Lisa yesterday but I wasn't sure so I looked again.

Friend 2:  I saw her as well and had to do a double take. She is so beautiful now I almost did not recognize her.

Friend 1:  I know. The last time I saw her she was a hundred pounds overweight, had greasy stringy hair and wore glasses.

Friend 2:  And now she looks like a fashion model.

to do a double take - Usage:


Usage Frequency Index:   472   click for frequency by country

to do a double take - Gerund Form:

Doing a double take when you see your male boss wearing a dress is natural.

to do a double take - Examples:

1)  ... stall has been ceramic food, which has seen more than one person do a double take as to whether the plate of bacon and eggs are actually real.

2)  ... Noor brothers on the football field, you are likely to do a double take. That because, Muhammad Noor Hariz and Muhammad Noor Haris are identical twins.

3)  We still do a double take when we see Daenerys without her flowing blonde locks.

4)  ... not already familiar with the ayam cemani, you're going to do a double take. Pictures of these beautiful, glossy black chickens certainly look like products of ...

5)  She definitely cleans up nicely. Had to do a double take.

6)  ... a story comes along that is so outrageous it can cause you to do a double take.

7)  Can you remember the last time a magazine cover made you do a double take? Was it a naked, pregnant Demi Moore?

8)  What I hope is people will do a double take then stop because they've seen something they don't quite understand or get ...

9)  ... and we had to do a double take because we couldn't believe what we were seeing.

10)  Visitors might also do a double take after arriving to find a European city looking out to the Sea of Japan.

11)  Everyone did a double take. Surely the figures could not be correct?

12)  ... her hair was cut off. Another son, Richard said the family did a double take on first viewing, but assumed it was the effect of the cancer.

13)  The government ministers did a double take. Was Strankman questioning the scientific reasons for closing the coal-fired plants?

14)  One little boy looked up at us, and I did a double take. "Is that baby wearing makeup?"

15)  We did a double take when we saw the brunette stunner, who is the spitting image of model ...

16)  ... surgery after her appearance at the Tony Awards on June 12 had everyone doing a double take. She does not look like her old self though.

17)  PUB goers were left doing a double take after being being given the option of BLUE fish and chips.

18)  Colleagues kept noticing the change, some even doing a double take when they saw me.

19)  But after doing a double take, she realized they weren't booster seats, they were child port-a-potties.

20)  ... of surgical enhancement, Katie (aka Jordan) is used to people doing a double take whenever she enters a room.