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meter is running, the

Costs or other consequences are accumulating, as in We'd better come to a decision soon, for the meter is running. This metaphoric expression alludes to the fare mounting up on a taxi meter. [ Late 1900s ]
The American HeritageĀ® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright Ā© 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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