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8
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2answers
74 views

What does “The Cruz-Trump relationship goes solid #TBT” mean?

Washington Post July 21 issue carries an article under the headline, “The Cruz-Trump relationship goes solid #TBT,” followed by the lead copy; And now the finale. Tonight is "Making America One ...
2
votes
2answers
8k views

Is “play chess when others are playing checkers,” a well-known / well-used phrase?

I found the phrase, “he’s always playing chess when others are playing checkers,” in today’s (September 11) article of New York Times, written by Charles Blow under the headline of “It’s a Mad, Mad, ...
8
votes
4answers
595 views

The usage of “banzai”

I started to reread a pretty old mystery of Thomas Harris, “The silence of the lambs,” which I once gave up reading because of difficulty of understanding the narrative studded with technical jargons ...
15
votes
8answers
22k views

What does “soft bigotry of low expectations” mean?

There was the following question from a reader and the answer by Charles Blow under the headline, “Your Questions, Answered” in the Opinion Page of May 7 New York Times. I invited you to ask me ...
4
votes
4answers
893 views

Is the phrase, “Let ‘em up easy” Abraham Lincoln’s one-off phrase or an obsolete idiom?

I came across the phrase, “Let’em up easy,” in the following sentence in the section of “1864 Reelection” of “Abraham Lincoln” in Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia: "Reconstruction began during the ...
9
votes
6answers
11k views

Is ‘on (in) a tear’ a popular idiom?

I was drawn to the phrase, ‘on a tear’ that I heard in audio in this week’s Barron’s magazine (June 6) reporting the good sales and profit performance of U.S. sneaker chain, Foot Locker: It says: ...
9
votes
2answers
177 views

What does “crawl over a pile of hot coals” mean?

Subsequent to my question about “within an inch of one’s life” in Vanity Fair magazine, Emily Jane’s article, “Megyn Kelly slams media “Bias against Trump” for criticism of her prime-time special” ...
24
votes
4answers
6k views

What does President Obama's “pro-knowledge” remark mean?

Today’s (May 17) New Yorker carries an article written by Andy Borowitz under the title, “Obama alienates millions with incendiary pro-knowledge remarks," which begins with the following passage: “...
1
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2answers
63 views

How to write £1 million where style guide clashes

I am writing the figure of £1,000,000 in a presentation but finding that my style guide clashes with what looks right. 'Million' must be spelled out. '£' must be used instead of 'pounds'. Numbers ...
6
votes
3answers
610 views

What does “the New York egoscape “ mean?

I was interested in the word, “egoscape” used in the following paragraph of the New Yorker magazine’s (March 14) article written by David Remnick under the title “American Demagogue”: “For a long ...
2
votes
1answer
77 views

What words describe the relation between “dollars” and “cents”?

A dollar can be divided up into 100 cents. A Swiss franc can be divided into 100 rappen. What are the words that describe these units (dollar vs cents or franc vs rappen)? I found out that ...
1
vote
2answers
317 views

Is it common to use “where” after “a time” as a relative?

I heard the following comment of Mr. Marco Rubio about Mr. Donald Trump on CBS’s “Face the Nation” in a clip in February 29th AP Radio News: “There is never gonna be a time where the Republican ...
0
votes
1answer
59 views

Is “There are perks, but there’s also baggage” a popular English adage?

I was interested in a phrase “There are perks, but there’s also baggage” in the following passage of Washington Post (March 7) article that came under the title, “Marco Rubio Implodes On Super ...
20
votes
4answers
4k views

What does Mr. Trump’s “inner rabbit” mean?

There was an article written by Gail Collins, op-ed columnist in the New York Times (February 19) under the title, “Trump Shows His Inner Rabbit.” The article starts with the passage; I am sorry ...
2
votes
2answers
160 views

What does “Retail politics” mean? Is it an established political term?

I come across the word, “retail (oriented) politics” in an article under the title, “All presidential politics is local” in Conway Daily Sun (December 23, 2015), which contained the following ...
9
votes
4answers
1k views

What does “medical scare” mean?

Today’s(September 25)Time magazine reports that: “Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen is feeling "fine" following a brief medical scare during an evening speech. Yellen was speaking at the University ...
2
votes
2answers
1k views

What does “triple down” in “Trump triples down on George W. Bush’s responsibility for 9/11”mean?

A Washington Post (October 18) article begins with the following passage under the headline, “Trump triples down on George W. Bush’s responsibility for 9/11.” Donald Trump says he doesn’t flat out ...
4
votes
2answers
106 views

Can the word, “OK’er,” be used in other area than copy editing?

I recently heard the word,’OK’er” in the New Yorker’s Live video, in which Mary Norris, New Yorker’s copy editor and author of "How I proofread my way to Philip Roth’s heart,” “Between You & Me on ...
2
votes
1answer
90 views

Is “pre-spin” a common word?

I was drawn to the word, “pre-spin” in the following passage in New York Times’ (October 9) article that came under the title, “From Donald Trump, hints of a campaign exit strategy.”: “Stuart ...
3
votes
2answers
255 views

Is ‘scooplet’ a popular word?

I came across the word, ‘scooplet’ in the statement of New York times’ reporter in its “What we are reading section” (October 24). Carolyn Ryan introduces “Time Machine” written by Kitty Kelley by ...
2
votes
1answer
186 views

Why “off the table” is not included in major English dictionaries while “on the table” is shown as an idiom in all of them?

I recently saw a cartoon in which President Obama in a physician’s costume followed by an elephant and a buffalo in suit is lifting up the one end of a surgery tolley marked “Big farma and insurance ...
26
votes
5answers
7k views

Why is the unit of measure placed before the value for currencies? Are there other measures where the unit precedes value?

$1,000 is pronounced as "one thousand dollars". Reading from left to right, it seems like it would make more sense to write the value as: 1,000$. This way the pronunciation of the value follows the ...
4
votes
1answer
347 views

What does “literary stylist” mean? Is it a characteristic or a profession?

The following passage in an article in The Guardian titled Occupy was right: Capitalism failed the world (April 13, 2014) comments on Thomas Piketty’s Capital in the twenty-first century, a work of ...
1
vote
3answers
207 views

What does “for comfort” in “too fast (close / hot/ warm / crammed) for comfort” mean?

I was drawn to the phrase, “Too fast for comfort” in New York Times (August 10) article with a headline, “China devalues its currency amid economic slowdown.: The move appeared to be a response to ...
3
votes
2answers
183 views

What does “fall for a bluff” mean? [closed]

New York Times (August 6) reported under the title, “25 years after Gardner Museum heist, video raises questions” that Federal officials released a video tape recording a guardsman, Richard Abath’s ...
1
vote
1answer
177 views

Is “It’s not unheard-of to do” not-an-unusual expression in day-to-day conversation?

There was the following passage in Maureen Dowd’s article titled, “Hooray for Hillarywood” in New York Times May 30 issue: “You hear plenty of complaints about the president’s mingy care and ...
20
votes
4answers
4k views

Is “You ain’t seen nothin’ yet” a common or respectable English expression?

Today’s edition of the New York Times (December 16, 2014) carries an article written by Mark Bittman under the headline “You ain’t seen nothin’ yet.” It begins with the following passage: “What’s ...
2
votes
2answers
93 views

Is “over-babble” a common word usable in day-to-day conversation?

There was the following passage in New York Times (May 14) article under the title, “Wow, Jeb Bush is awful.”: "The bottom line is that so far he seems to be a terrible candidate. He couldn’t ...
8
votes
6answers
20k views

What does “Come-to Jesus (moment / stage / meeting)” mean? Is it a popular word?

There was the following sentence in Maureen Dowd’s article titled, “The spies who didn’t love her” in New York Times (March 11). Barack Obama-- vowing to clean up the excesses and Constitutional ...
3
votes
3answers
384 views

Is “Grey tsunami” a mere metaphor, or acknowledged phrase to represent for accelerated global increase of old age population?

The article of the Economics (April 26, 2014) titled “Demography, growth and inequality; Age invaders” ends up with the following passages: It (shift to ageing population) will be a world in which ...
3
votes
2answers
254 views

What does “cheffed-up” in “Traditional ramen that hasn’t been cheffed-up” mean?

In connection with my previous question about the meaning of the line, “This is a lot of cargo for noodle soup” in NYT’s (March 4, 2014) article, “Ramen’s Big Splash,” in its Dining & Wine section,...
-1
votes
3answers
446 views

Does the words, “Love interests” and “Love intelligence” have a special meaning other than plain “love affair” and “love gossip”?

I was drawn to the words, “Love interest” and “Love intelligence” appearing in Maureen Dowd’s article, “Creeping Crowd” which dealt with the N.S.A.’s domestic surveillance, in Sept 28 New York Times. ...
1
vote
4answers
2k views

What does “Live in one’s own skin” mean?

There was the following passage in Vanity Fair magazine’s (January 7 issue) article under the headline, “Meryl Streep responds to Russell Crowe’s controversial comments about ageism in Hollywood”: ...
2
votes
4answers
583 views

Is there a word for the small of currency, eg, cents, pence, etc?

I am writing some instructions and I want my audience to understand that an amount must be entered in cents / pence / Eurocents / Satoshis etc. Is there a word that describes these small, granular ...
2
votes
1answer
164 views

Is “two-Perrier” lunch a businessmen’s buzz word?

There was a line, “He was not one for two-Perrier lunch,” in the eulogy for a British politician who made a great contribution to the formation of E.U. system. Also there is the following passage in ...
1
vote
1answer
111 views

Who are “the perks people”?

I was drawn to the phrase 'the perks people' in the headline of an article which appeared in the Wall Street Journal (November 20, 2014 issue) — The perks people: Meet silicon valley’s ‘Little elves'. ...
0
votes
4answers
109k views

How to say the total amount?

I'm not sure if the saying of the total amount USD 23,428.32 is correct below (esp. the 'cent' part after the dot): Say U.S. dollars twenty-three thousand four hundred and twenty-eight and thirty-...
2
votes
3answers
246 views

Is “Click bait” an Internet buzzword? How can I rephrase it?

I found a video showing a fireman who rescued a suffocating kitten from a fire smoke and resuscitated her by oxygen inhalation introduced in the article titled “Why that video went viral” in New York ...
13
votes
2answers
2k views

What does “Small words” in “They are small words that reflect a dark and negative point of view.”?

Washington Post (June 27) picked up Texas Gov. Rick Perry’s comment digging in Sen. Wendy Davis for her filibustering the abortion bill in his speech delivered at a convention of the National Right to ...
4
votes
3answers
3k views

Does the expression, “As sound as a pound” still holds its currency?

There is the following sentence in the New York Time’s (July 24) article titled, “A Chinese gold standard?” written by its Op-Ed Contributor, Kwasi Kwarteng. “For most of the 19th century the ...
3
votes
2answers
6k views

Case of USD — “United States Dollar” or “United States dollar”

What is correct, United States dollar or United States Dollar? In the examples below the emphasis is mine. Example 1 (context) The United States dollar (sign: $; code: USD; also abbreviated US$) ...
3
votes
1answer
194 views

Who are “Security moms”?

I came across the word, “Security mom” and “Wal-Mart mom” in the following statement in my newspaper clippings, originally in Time: Can Obama Win Back Wal-Mart Moms? "The women that are different ...
4
votes
4answers
312 views

Are “Real class” and “Paper class” well-received pair words?

Today’s (October 23) Time magazine and New Yorker carried articles dealing with a report of academic scandal of the University of North Carolina under the respective headline, “North Carolina releases ...
0
votes
2answers
340 views

What is the provenance of “ring the cherries”?

I was drawn to the phrase, “ring the cherries” in the following passage in Thomas Harris’ “The Silence of Lambs” in a part officer, Jerry Burroughs telling the profile of a suspect killer to FBI agent,...
5
votes
2answers
472 views

What does “media (news) disruptor” mean?

There is the following passage in the article titled, “Why disruptors are always white guys” in New York Magazine September 10 issue: “It’s happening again. There’s a list of “media disruptors.” ...
1
vote
1answer
2k views

What does “show some (a little) leg” mean?

There was the following sentence in the New York Times (August 16) article under the title, “Where the justice at justice.”: “Attorney General Eric Holder said in May that “no reporter who is ...
13
votes
4answers
3k views

Is “Ur-moment” a normal English expression?

The New York Times article of this past July 29th titled, “The D.O. Is In Now: Osteopathic Schools Turn Out Nearly a Third of All Med School Grads,” features the growing popularity of the Touro ...
3
votes
2answers
3k views

Lean in and lean out

There was an article titled “Forget Leaning In, Let's Talk about Leaning Out” in Forbes magazine (April 2. 2014) in which the author, Caroline Mayer says: “I don’t know about you, but I’ve heard ...
6
votes
3answers
412 views

Is “since-folded (TV network)” an accustomed English word?

Time magazine (August 29) reports that Sara Palin has launched her own Internet Television network in its Entertainment TV section. It says; “Palin’s not the first candidate to lose an election ...
3
votes
2answers
294 views

What does ‘Reverse fig leaf” mean?

I was interested in the word, “Reverse fig leaf” in an article titled, “Should Germans read ‘Mein Kampf” appearing in New York Times (July 7), which deals with the planned publication of Adolf Hitler’...