rat race

noun

Definition of rat race

: strenuous, wearisome, and usually competitive activity or rush

Examples of rat race in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Joe Pantoliano stars in a new film about a tired CEO quitting the rat race and moving to his childhood hometown in Italy. John Benson, cleveland, "‘From the Vine’ and ‘Jimmy Carter: Rock & Roll President’ top this week’s streaming movies at Cleveland Cinemas and Cinematheque," 2 Sep. 2020 For the wealthy and well-connected, the rat race for selective college admissions starts in preschool, if not earlier. Washington Post, "To get into college, they lied about test scores, talent and even race," 21 Aug. 2020 My dreams had been shattered, and I was now reduced to being just another high-school failure with nothing but a dismal life in a dead-end rat race to look forward to. Dave Grohl, The Atlantic, "How Far Does the Apple Fall From the Tree?," 21 June 2020 The whole thing about the general rat race, and people's values in life and family and work life balance. Jonathan M. Gitlin, Wired, "Jaguar Envisions Car Design for a Post-Pandemic World," 30 Apr. 2020 The whole thing about the general rat race, and people's values in life and family and work life balance. Jonathan M. Gitlin, Wired, "Jaguar Envisions Car Design for a Post-Pandemic World," 30 Apr. 2020 The whole thing about the general rat race, and people's values in life and family and work life balance. Jonathan M. Gitlin, Ars Technica, "What does COVID-19 mean for car design? We ask Jaguar’s Julian Thomson," 25 Apr. 2020 By choosing to make R&B, and a muted version of that, Bieber is both recusing himself from the centrist pop rat race and aligning himself with a style that’s personal to him, and not always widely embraced. Jon Caramanica, New York Times, "Can Justin Bieber Hide in Plain Sight?," 14 Feb. 2020 Then companies like Google came along and reinvented the rat race into something with purpose and, along the way, confused work with the rest of life. Arielle Pardes, Wired, "Silicon Valley Ruined Work Culture," 24 Feb. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'rat race.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of rat race

1937, in the meaning defined above

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The first known use of rat race was in 1937

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Cite this Entry

“Rat race.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/rat%20race. Accessed 3 Dec. 2020.

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