This tag is for questions related to the English language as used in the United States of America.

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1
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2answers
35 views

What is the word for the face of a mountain or a huge rock, that rhymes with edifice or a similiar word?

Thank you? Irifice or something? Can someone give me a word for the face of a mountainous brown rock?
0
votes
0answers
30 views

'Wasn't dressed' vs 'Didn't dress'

I was wondering what is the difference between : She didn't dress properly to the live performance. and She wasn't dressed properly to the live performance. If it's completely identical ...
0
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0answers
20 views

English Grammar [migrated]

I have a sentence: "We are having a party this evening" I don't know why we use present continuous. In grammar, we don't use having for possess. Thank you for reading
0
votes
1answer
38 views

Can I use meet for an online meeting?

I would like to know if I can say "We can meet on Monday or Tuesday" in email as a reply to a sales person's email asking for a couple of days options for an online meeting -- a sort of Skype call. I ...
3
votes
2answers
62 views

what is the meaning of “pro-rate”? [on hold]

What does "pro-rate" in following sentence mean? We pro-rate our prices if you join after a session has started does it mean that they reduce the price if I want to enroll after a session has ...
7
votes
2answers
696 views

Nylon bag vs plastic bag

I was buying some carry out and I asked for a nylon bag. The cashier, who is not a native speaker, gave me a look and offered a 'plastic bag', which is what I wanted to begin with. I don't know why I ...
1
vote
1answer
27 views

The meaning of “play off” here

"While playing off the hype of the TV show reboot "The X-files," the CIA broke down the cases into two categories, whether you side with Agent Mulder or Agent Scully." I'm studying English and I ...
5
votes
0answers
121 views

Why does “alcohol” end with /ɔl/ for some American speakers? Which ones?

For American English speakers, the written sequence "ol" usually corresponds to the pronunciation /oʊl/ (like in cold), /oʊ/ (like in yolk), or /ɑl/ (like in collar); or to /əl/ when unstressed (like ...
0
votes
0answers
29 views

Does a group have an earache or earaches?

If I have a pain in my ear, I will say "I have an earache." Now what happens if I am talking about more than one person? Would I say "They have an earache", or "They have earaches"?
5
votes
5answers
92 views

What's the more common way to refer to a road with 180° curves?

A hairpin road is a road with hairpin turns or bends. According to Wikipedia: A hairpin bend , named for its resemblance to a hairpin/bobby pin, is a bend in a road with a very acute ...
-1
votes
1answer
22 views

the meaning of counteraction and countermeasure [closed]

Do counteraction and countermeasure have the same meaning?
3
votes
5answers
290 views
+500

Ambiguous meaning of NAmEng sense of “skill” in Harrap's English-French Dictionary

Harrap's New Shorter English-French/French-English Dictionary, Ed. 1982, states, skill n 1. habileté f, adresse f, dextérité f; technical skill, habileté, aptitude f, technique; ...
3
votes
2answers
102 views

“[ball]park” in AmEng vernacular

Are the terms ballpark and park specific to baseball in AmEng, or can they also be used for every which athletic stadium in which ball games like soccer or rugby are played? For example, would a ...
1
vote
3answers
86 views

“crash” vs. “wreck” for [road/air] accident in AmEng

What's the difference between those terms in relation to a road or air accident? crash verb (Aeronautics) to cause (an aircraft) to hit land or water violently resulting in severe damage ...
2
votes
3answers
72 views

“road” vs. “pavement” vs. “roadway” for French “chaussée” [road surface] in AmEng vernacular

What's the difference between those terms? Can they be used just about interchangeably? road: a long, narrow stretch with a leveled or paved surface, made for traveling by motor vehicle, carriage, ...
0
votes
4answers
99 views

more unhealthy vs. unhealthier

First off, I'm not a native speaker but this question isn't about the rules themselves but rather usage in the USA. I learnt that you should say 'unhealthier' (and the Oxford + Longman dictionaries I ...
0
votes
0answers
48 views

Could you tell me the word which means “full of mistakes”? [closed]

I want to know if there are some words that mean "full of err or mistakes."
1
vote
1answer
18 views

Using For+noun, in conversations

I'm currently studying English in the US and I heard a lot of people start sentences with 'for~'. For me, it sounds like it means 'as for' or 'when it comes to'. Is that right? If so, is it common ...
4
votes
4answers
35 views

term or phrase representing a placeholder or variable

How can I express in standard American English that events occur "every X days" or end "after X occurrences" — here, "X" is a placeholder for a variable and unknown quantity — without ...
3
votes
1answer
73 views

“All-American” … which usage came first?

In the U.S., "All-American" can mean two things. (1) It can be used as a general phrase, meaning simply clean-cut and middle class. "He's the all-American boy" is a cliché sentence. Note, this usage ...
9
votes
3answers
101 views

What is the etymology of the term “form factor”?

I'm a theoretical physicist, and am doing some work on quantities called form factors. To an expert, a form factor says something about scattering particles from fields. This probably originated from ...
2
votes
3answers
39 views

Who or What for question about statement

For the statement: "Obama is the president of the United States." Which of these questions is considered the most correct? Who is Obama? What is Obama? Basically, my question revolves ...
1
vote
1answer
46 views

“tab” for “hotel bill” in AmEng

In AmEng vernacular, is the word tab specific to restaurant and bar checks, or can it also be used for hotel bills? E.g. Guest: We'll be checking out early tomorrow morning, so if it isn't too ...
1
vote
1answer
67 views

What are the levels of proficiency in english and the vocubulary subsets at each level [closed]

What are the levels of proficiency in english and the vocubulary subsets at each level. As in how many words should a person know at each level of english proficiency and is there a reference list of ...
0
votes
1answer
27 views

What does “within greater [region]” mean? [closed]

If someone says something such as "Within greater Seattle", what does that mean?
5
votes
2answers
254 views

Old, experienced soldier in US slang

In British slang, an "old sweat" is an old, experienced soldier. What is the American equivalent? I don't mean a veteran (someone who's left the military), I mean someone still in service.
8
votes
4answers
214 views

“[a/the] equivalent of” vs. “[a/the] equivalent for” vs. “[a/the] equivalent to”

Which of the following constructs sound more idiomatic to you? Is there any British/American equivalent to the French phrase "broyer du noir"? Is there any British/American equivalent for the ...
2
votes
1answer
57 views

Whence the BrE “fine tooth-comb” where AmE uses “fine-tooth comb”?

I'm reading a novel set in present-day England, and it's sprinkled with uses of the construction in the title. This is far from the first time I've encountered this in BrE writing, along with general ...
3
votes
1answer
44 views

Which English language groups/cultures would say “I'm going to bed now” while they were already in a bed?

I was reading a discussion on another part of the internet and many of the people involved asserted that it was common to use the phrase "go to bed" for "cease all other activity and go to sleep" even ...
0
votes
1answer
26 views

he got nothing on me. what does this phrase mean?

hi i was listening a song by charlie Puth and he says Superman got nothing on me . what does it mean? thanks
2
votes
1answer
63 views

Using “so isn't” or “so can't” instead of “so is” or “so can”?

Lately I've heard people using what I think to be a negative response to indicate a positive affirmation, like so: Example 1 You can touch the basketball rim? Well so can't I! Example 2 Person A: ...
-3
votes
3answers
41 views

Is this headline concise and clear enough? [closed]

I want to say it like im 5. Essentially, where a 5 year old could be able to comprehend the message. I tried to simplify this line, but I feel it's still a bit complicated. Making deliveries ...
0
votes
2answers
49 views

What “appear to be ” means in the given sentence [closed]

Today, while reading a newspaper I came across a sentence that has been baffling me since: The woman, who identified herself as Bhavna and appeared to be in her 20s, .... What does appeared to ...
31
votes
8answers
10k views

When talking to American clients, should I say “smoothie” or “milkshake”?

We have a client visit planned to our service center (in India) and I am in-charge of Food and Beverages for our client's entire itinerary. I am writing to my client's Travel coordinator(an American) ...
4
votes
2answers
93 views

When did “the pub in Bleecker Street” become “the pub on Bleecker Street”?

In the streets is still used universally. As is out in the street. The casual fan of Sir Arthur's writings will recall, of course, that Mr. Holmes and Dr. Watson lived in Baker Street: ...while ...
4
votes
15answers
805 views

Opposite idiom for going with the flow

According to the Cambridge dictionary, going with the flow is defined as to do what other ​people are doing or to ​agree with other ​people because it is the ​easiest thing to do. I am writing a paper ...
5
votes
2answers
213 views

“The government 'is' always changing 'their' mind” in AmEng

Why would using the construct "is/their" instead of "is/its" in the following examples likely be frowned upon by some native speakers and marked as incorrect on tests? The class is working on its ...
-1
votes
1answer
30 views

Does this sentence read nice and fluent? [closed]

I bravely overcame the difficulties and succeeded to make my life full of notable accomplishments which include my excellent GPA of 3.98/4 in B.Sc. studies and years of successful academic and work ...
-1
votes
1answer
58 views

English pronunciation of the letter “a” [closed]

I heard the letter a was pronounced /ei/, and sometimes it was pronounced as /ə/. So, can you tell me when is it pronounced as /ei/, and when as /ə/?
0
votes
2answers
38 views

Term “should be facing” - English explanation

Could anyone please tell me how the meaning of term "should be facing" is used? I mean if some STICKER should be facing some part of the product. What does this mean? If it should be facing to ...
1
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1answer
70 views

Word usage: “manyfold” or “manifold”? [closed]

Is there any US/UK English difference in the spellings "manyfold" and "manifold"?
1
vote
3answers
60 views

I need a word to describe a group which is not accepting of others not of themselves. Sample sentence below

Your organization treats people in a very "exclusionary" manner. ( Meaning that it is a group that is not accepting of others not of themselves.
5
votes
2answers
82 views

How does American English distinguish between sharing a flat and a room?

Today I learnt that in American English, roommate can mean two people who share the same apartment unit but have different bedrooms, as well as people who share the same bedroom. How do people using ...
0
votes
3answers
48 views

Are there local differences in the definitions of cleaning and tidying?

Do the words cleaning and tidying translate differently in different English speaking countries? Specifically, would vacuuming always be considered part of tidying AND cleaning?
2
votes
1answer
55 views

To address a stranger on street [closed]

Preparing for our honeymoon in the USA, I am wondering what is the most appropriate way to address someone (a stranger) on street, e.g. to ask for a piece of advice. I can imagine that Good day ...
3
votes
1answer
93 views

Are “pay phones” still, if ever, called “pay stations” in the U.S.?

What is pay station in the U.S.? If you look it up, say, on ODO, it is defined as an AmEng equivalent of pay phone. pay station: n. US term for pay phone ODO Now, if you search Google Images ...
0
votes
2answers
77 views

Usage of “burn” as a form of mockery - How did it start?

I have come across numerous posts/memes on social media where, considering A,B and C are different people: A posts something seemingly innocuous. B comments on A's post, something either very funny ...
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votes
2answers
90 views

What does “propose a toast” mean? [closed]

I see this phrase "propose a toast" a lot often while watching American TV series like Friends. This is what Google tells me: ask a group of people at a social occasion to drink to the health and ...
0
votes
1answer
28 views

how do I vs. how do you [closed]

I was wondering which one is used more often by Americans when asking something? How do you get the the train station? vs How do I get to the train station? I think British use 'one', which I ...
5
votes
1answer
68 views

Is “oxbow lake” used by both American and British English for billabongs?

Is the term "oxbow lake" used in both American and British English to describe billabongs? Wiktionary has a definition for oxbow lake, but doesn't describe which varieties of English use it.