kick one's heels

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kick one's heels (third-person singular simple present kicks one's heels, present participle kicking one's heels, simple past and past participle kicked one's heels)

  1. Used other than with a figurative or idiomatic meaning: see kick,‎ heels.
    The restless boy kicked his heels against the chair legs.
    The dancer kicked her heels as high as her shoulders.
  2. (idiomatic) To wait; to wait impatiently or restlessly.
    • 1830, The Edinburgh Literary Journal, Volume 1, page 231:
      [] whether, in one single instance, any individual has been obliged to kick his heels in the lobby even for one minute, and whether the order was not instantly granted ?
    • 1893, Robert Louis Stevenson, Catriona, Dedication: To Charles Baxter:
      It is the fate of sequels to disappoint those who have waited for them; and my David, having been left to kick his heels for more than a lustre in the British Linen Company’s office, must expect his late re-appearance to be greeted with hoots, if not with missiles.
    • 1999, Denis Diderot, David Coward (translator), Jacques the Fatalist, page 37:
      [] the older fathers were left to kick their heels in their empty booths, which made them very cross...


See also[edit]