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

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2
votes
1answer
60 views

Meaning of “tea party”

Of late I've noticed that this phrase seems to be tossed around all the time especially in the context of political discussions. What does it exactly mean? For example, take a look at the following ...
-1
votes
2answers
114 views

What does “Booting these guys” mean? [closed]

I am not native English speaker, but in a conversation with an American guy, I come across this line. I am adding the situation where that guy used this sentence. He gave me some things to do, I did ...
2
votes
1answer
152 views

Are there any famous English poems that every British-raised or American-raised person knows? [closed]

In the Chinese language, there is a poem named Quiet Night Thoughts(Jing Ye Si) by Li Bai, which is known by everyone that is native to China (from little kids to very old people, even if they are ...
0
votes
1answer
39 views

“Know the way over”

You tell someone that, if a disaster happen at your place, you're going to go to his/her place (kidding). They reply: "I am glad you still know the way over". What does this mean?
0
votes
4answers
86 views

A word to describe a person who is in top/winning bracket of a competitive game

I am looking for a word that would describe a player who is, for example, in a TOP 10 chart and is eligible for a prize. That means that if he would suddenly lose his/her position and get ranked 11 or ...
0
votes
0answers
34 views

Need vs. Needs? [duplicate]

I heard a person on television say the following... "Pittsburgh need to win this game." To me, this sounds incorrect. I think it should be "needs to." If however, the announcer had said... ...
6
votes
2answers
260 views

Where do people pronounce “ank” as /eŋk/ vs. /æŋk/?

Let's use "bank" as an example. Some Americans pronounce it /bæŋk/, using the vowel of TRAP. Others pronounce it /beŋk/, using the vowel of FACE. Where are these two pronunciations found?
2
votes
1answer
151 views

Where in the U.S. do people change the stress of umbrella, adult and TV to the first syllable?

Is it just a small percentage of the population in that region who stress the first syllable, or is it widespread? In other words, if I visit such region will I find almost everyone talking like that ...
22
votes
5answers
6k views

“Pissed” vs “Pissed off”

In Australian English there has always been a distinction between "pissed" (intoxicated) and "pissed off" (angry, irritated). I've noticed a trend towards the American usage where "he was really ...
2
votes
1answer
1k views

What kind of rain is “sprinkles”?

It appears that MSN Weather has chosen an amusing adjective (from my British point of view) for the weather today: I'm assuming the precipitation (sadly) won't contain any hundreds-and-thousands. ...
-1
votes
3answers
65 views

need confirmation or needs confirmation

I receive an issue reported in an issue tracker. That issue requires confirmation to check if it is a real issue. How should the label be names as: Need confirmation or Needs confirmation?
2
votes
1answer
313 views

The lost English dictionary

There is an old dictionary of the English language where words are defined from a pessimistic/skeptical/sadistic perspective. I seem to have lost the link to that dictionary in my bookmarks. I wonder ...
2
votes
1answer
230 views

Declension is a noun. What is the verb? [closed]

Based on Wikipedia article, in linguistics, declension is the inflection of nouns, pronouns, adjectives, and articles to indicate number (at least singular and plural), case (nominative or subjective, ...
-2
votes
3answers
60 views

Lookig for a better/stronger sentence [closed]

Could anybody let me know a stronger/improved sentence for the one shown below: One of my interest is in applying machine learning to real world problems
0
votes
2answers
520 views

Problem listening to foreign accents

From the beginning I had some problems listening to foreign accents. Like when someone from my native country (India) speaks English I understand it at once, but if someone from a foreign country ...
0
votes
1answer
384 views

What does “Way to read the room” mean?

I'm translating a movie and there's one sentence I could not understand. In the movie a doctor tells his friend: Doctor: Find something sharp to penetrate his skull.(to help the patient). ...
0
votes
2answers
110 views

“Jimmy did his homework and so didn't his brother” Is this correct?

Shouldn't it be "...and so did his brother"? I got confused when I read the original sentence in an American newspaper some time ago. It read something like this: "US Representative from ...
0
votes
0answers
17 views

'parameterized' or 'parametrized' [duplicate]

In the following sentence: To avoid the attacks, most frameworks and DB systems provide mechanism for parameterized queries. My browser wants to correct the highlighted word to parametrized, but ...
0
votes
1answer
42 views

What mind stands for [closed]

The difinition of mind that parts of individual feels, perceives, thinks, wills, and especially reasons is a common presence in dictionaries,however,what it stand for?Brain?
0
votes
2answers
180 views

What does “peak and pine” mean in this ballad?

From scoutsongs.com Oh, My Darling Clementine In a cavern, In a canyon, Excavating for a mine, Dwelt a miner forty-niner, And his daughter Clementine. Chorus: Oh my darling, Oh my darling, ...
13
votes
7answers
1k views

Which is longer: snooze, nap, kip, 40 winks or siesta?

How long is a snooze? My boyfriend will invariable take an afternoon snooze which might last anything up to two hours. A nap on the other hand, can be short, quick or even long, and sometimes they are ...
-1
votes
1answer
51 views

Spelling - why not finanse?

If it is license rather than licence, defense rather than defence, offense rather than offence, then why not finanse?
0
votes
3answers
119 views

Meaning of “exactly” in casual conversation

My question involves a group text conversation between friends whom are all native english speakers. Friend A began the conversation with a photograph of himself dressed up for a night on the town, ...
1
vote
1answer
99 views

speech balloon vs speech bubble usage and meaning

I am from the UK, and am not familiar with the term "speech balloon". I have always used and heard "speech bubble" instead. Are the 2 meanings the same? Is there some kind of difference in ...
2
votes
2answers
172 views

His “get-up-and-go” is likely to have “got-up-and-gone” Any hidden meaning in this comment?

I once overheard a conversation between two young women on a long distance flight and one of them said: "He is past seventy, you know. His get-up-and-go is likely to have got-up-and gone." And they ...
0
votes
1answer
89 views

“I” vs. “me” question

I was born in United States but at a young age my parents decided to take me and my siblings to Turkey. It looks right to me, but my English teacher always (and I mean always) points out mistakes ...
9
votes
6answers
3k views

What are the percentages of the parts of speech in English?

What are the percentages of the parts of speech in English? For instance, what percent of English is comprised of nouns, verbs, adjectives, etc.? I have done an extensive web search using a ...
9
votes
4answers
1k views

Why is stainless steel “stainless”?

Inox steel is stainless because it does not stain, but is stain the same thing as rust? I just want to understand since stain reminds me of clothing stains, for instance, and I am rather curious as to ...
-1
votes
1answer
32 views

Third-party or third party? [duplicate]

Does British English use a dash in between third-party, or is that for American English?
2
votes
3answers
109 views

Does the phrase “espoused narrative” make sense?

Recently I've been told my usage of this term is incorrect, but I've seen it being used often enough. Context I've pulled from google "This may well also allow the EU to illegitimate these ...
2
votes
1answer
43 views

Difference between 'created by' and 'created from'

I am writing an essay and I was stuck in the middle of it because I was wondering if I should use from or by in this sentence: 'Incapable to detect that his own circumstances are created by/from his ...
1
vote
1answer
1k views

What does “yeah” mean in American? [closed]

Often I talk with people and they say "yeah". What do they mean? I'm only in USA recently and everyone says "yeah". I gather it means "yes", but I also hear "yeah" when it doesn't mean "yes"?
5
votes
8answers
3k views

How to choose between British and American English for technical documents

I'm not a native English speaker. I'm Italian and I'm doing my thesis in the Netherlands. I have to write technical documents for non-native English speakers, so I didn't receive any advice for ...
3
votes
3answers
1k views

Clarifying the usage of “hella”

The word hella has spread from the Southern California dialect to the point where most varieties of American English speaker (such as me in the Midwest) know that it exists and hear it used. I always ...
17
votes
3answers
718 views

The origins and usages of “waffle”

Scottish dogs used to waff American voters waffled in 2000 British politicians “waffle on” for hours And Swedish children eat them on March 25th Waffle nowadays has basically three meanings: ...
1
vote
2answers
63 views

In search of a word: Contingent but without fail

I'm in search of a certain word which I cannot find in the dictionary or the internet, but I found something like it. The word is contingent. con·tin·gent (kn-tnjnt) adj. Liable to ...
1
vote
1answer
30 views

Plugging in a list of words into a phrase

I'm writing a sentence that uses a plugged list of words into my main phrase. I think I picked this up from reading stuff that used a similar construction(?) but I'm not sure if it's ...
0
votes
2answers
99 views

Compelled and compeled - American English

As for the British English it's always taught - compel, compelled, compelling Some of the books/dictionaries say that in American English you say compel, compeled, compeling instead, you simply don't ...
2
votes
1answer
124 views

What would be 1850's equivalent of slang praise for being audacious?

What might an 1850's working class American man say as praise to another man for being really audacious such as equivalent of "You crazy mf" or "crazy ass"?
3
votes
2answers
82 views

Geographical Usage of “Mate”

I was wondering where the term, "mate," is most popular? When I think of the term, "mate," I think of Australia and England, but I was wondering if anyone else has some input on this. Mate here is ...
12
votes
5answers
2k views

“to bath” vs “to bathe”

Recently, I came across the verb to bathe written as bath in two Italian textbooks. The first time I saw it, I dismissed it as a typographical error and told my private student that the verb was ...
-1
votes
1answer
48 views

The word foresaw and its morphemes

I need help with the word foresaw. I know that the morphemes for foresaw are {fore} and {saw} but what kind of morpehmes are they (derivational/inflection) and what are their category and function
0
votes
1answer
100 views

Verbal constructions with “on” in colloquial AE

Are verbal constructions with "on" somewhat more typical of AE than BE? e.g. beat (up) on someone, miss out on something, pass up on something, check (up) on something, catch up on something, ...
0
votes
2answers
378 views

“Pretty good” vs. “pretty bad”

What is the difference between using "pretty bad" and "pretty good" in this kind of slang context? It seems to be more of an American English quirk. Looks like you hurt your leg pretty bad ...
2
votes
1answer
134 views

Is the use of the word 'hence' improper in business writing?

I'm a professional technical writer. I used the word 'hence' in my conclusions a couple of times. The client (from Canada) let me know that it sounds like something straight out of a "Shakespeare ...
3
votes
2answers
10k views

What's the best way to get rid of international accents? [closed]

I have lived in the United States for more than five years now, and I am over 20 years old. Although I do not have that many problems with my verbal or written skills, it is not hard for people to ...
1
vote
2answers
2k views

Use Schedule and Timetable together

The context is a course scheduling and the process in creating one: course scheduling. I have looked up, that schedule is typically used American English and timetable is typically used in British ...
1
vote
1answer
40 views

Point of difficulty in how punctuation should be handled in and around quotations relating to software logging statements

I sent an e-mail to somebody in the office this morning that had to do with some logging statements in our software, and I wasn't quite sure how to handle commas and such around the quotation marks. ...
15
votes
8answers
7k views

When did the term “flip flop” displace the term “thong” in North America for a type of sandal?

To Australians like me "thong" means a kind of sandal such as recently repopularized by the Havaianas brand but we know it means a kind of G-string in other English-speaking parts of the world. To ...
1
vote
3answers
1k views

What's the meaning of “unplugged”?

English is my second language and I'm wondering what's the exactly meaning of "somebody unplugged"? Such as "Joe Biden unplugged"?