You zone out until what I'm trying to convey reaches critical mass, and then kaboom, and I'm the bad guy, and bye- bye messenger.
After several hours of testimony explaining his calculations, some jurors seemed to zone out.
late 14c., from Latin zona "geographical belt, celestial zone," from Greek zone "a belt," related to zonnynai "to gird," from PIE root *yes- "to gird, girdle" (cf. Avestan yasta- "girt," Lithuanian juosiu "to gird," Old Church Slavonic po-jasu "girdle").
Originally one of the five great divisions of the earth's surface (torrid, temperate, frigid; separated by tropics of Cancer and Capricorn and Arctic and Antarctic circles); meaning "any discrete region" is first recorded 1822. Zone defense in team sports is recorded from 1927. Zoning "land-use planning" is recorded from 1912. Zoned (adj.) in drug-use sense is attested 1960s, from ozone, which is found high in the atmosphere; the related verb to zone is from 1980s.
An area or a region distinguished from adjacent parts by a distinctive feature or characteristic.
To omit from consciousness; shut out of the mind: I can just zone everything out and keep going (1960s+)
(also zoner) A person intoxicated with narcotics, esp habitually so; space cadet (1960s+ Narcotics)
To be inattentive; be hazily preoccupied: He zoned so bad he didn't even hear the teacher call his name/ I was kind of zonin', checking things out (1980s+)
[fr ozone, ''a very high level of the atmosphere'']