Expressions are words or phrases used to convey an idea, or else a particular term used conventionally to express something.

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3
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2answers
47 views

“At this stage” in corporate speak

I've noticed "At this stage" preceding delivery of the negative to the reader. What's the reason for this? "At this stage, unfortunately (for you), we won't be proceeding further with your ...
2
votes
2answers
72 views

Is there an English expression from Latin for “in writing”, “written”, etc?

Is there a Latin expression that is now used in English for "written"? For example, "Here is my request in written form." - to replace "in written form"? Or, "We took written notes.", you get the ...
4
votes
8answers
955 views

One word - someone so scared that he can't move

I am not able to find an appropriate word to fill in for "scared". He was so scared, he couldn't move. He turned to stone. He was too shocked. He almost turned to stone and could not move. ...
2
votes
2answers
48 views

What is the origin of the phrase “grease the skids”?

What is the origin or derivation of the phrase "greasing the skids?" The phrase connotes preparation, in such a way as to make the subsequent activities easier. Definitions are available various ...
0
votes
2answers
57 views

“Nice little place you've got here” - is it derogatory? [on hold]

That is, does "little place" imply that the place is small, but pretty nevertheless? When told, would this offend a person owning a large mansion?
3
votes
2answers
166 views

Physical object, carried be a person, that represents an encumbrance

I believe a word currently exists that is used as a metaphor to mean something similar to, "a person is (willingly?) carrying a physical object, but there is no benefit to carrying (or transporting) ...
0
votes
2answers
33 views

Meaning of 'insider hiring' [on hold]

there is an article about hiring. http://www.haaretz.com/misc/iphone-article/.premium-1.637980 one of the headers is 'Insider hiring'. what does it exactly mean? hiring someone you know? does it have ...
5
votes
1answer
373 views

Meaning of “I'm a large” [on hold]

In one of the Seinfeld episodes (season 6, episode 12) there is a conversation, in which Elaine tells Jerry that she had given a label maker to a dentist and the dentist obviously gave that same label ...
12
votes
12answers
2k views

Is there a suitable antonym for 'Achilles heel'?

I'm trying to juxtapose antonyms in a effort to describe something. The first draft of an excerpt reads something like this: I will tell of their triumphs and downfalls... I would like to ...
0
votes
2answers
44 views

“From then on” or “since then”?

Do these two expressions mean the same or are they used in different contexts? I wrote "Since then" in an essay for my English teacher but she wrote me "from then on" instead. I wanted to say that two ...
2
votes
4answers
186 views

Phrases for (someone) making a short visit/appearance

When I need to visit to any place for a very short time, say, for 10-15 minutes A politician coming late and leaving in minutes at a fundraiser. An acquaintance just dropping by to say ...
0
votes
0answers
29 views

A “cold opening” like by Saturday Night Live [on hold]

I could not find it on my favorite translator dict.leo.org, so I ask the resident AI, what is a cold opening, as found in many titles of Saturday Night Live episodes on your favorite video clip ...
2
votes
1answer
70 views

The phrase - “I remain sceptical” vs “I continue to remain sceptical”

During a parent meeting , I heard a teacher say : I remain sceptical (on the progress of the child). and the parent questioning him- Why do you continue to remain sceptical? ...
0
votes
0answers
31 views

Do you say “ What I was the most surprised at was …”? [on hold]

Superlative is confusing to me. I am the most surprised at ... , I am most surprised at ... I am surprised most at ... I am surprised the most at ... It's the most surprising that ... Which ...
0
votes
1answer
71 views

How to express difficulty selecting from equally appealing options [closed]

I want to express the idea that multiple options are equally appealing and therefore difficult to choose from. I thought of this sentence: They are too equally attractive to >be picked up. ...
4
votes
2answers
117 views

A word or phrase for an unremarkable event that occurs with uncanny frequency

I am looking for a word or phrase for an unremarkable event that occurs with uncanny frequency. To give a specific example, one might be seeing a random shopper drop their bag every time you enter a ...
-1
votes
0answers
46 views

US English equivalent of “I'm sorry but this is actually not my fault” [closed]

I was asked to write a review for a journal. There was not much time to the deadline, and no detailed instructions. So I examined the previous issues and found a review. I used the very same structure ...
0
votes
1answer
16 views

can I write this? [closed]

I have just started to write in English. Can you maybe help me with this expression: The most difficult thing about writing texts in English for me is how to begin. So I’ve been thinking about ...
0
votes
1answer
64 views

How do you say “more moneys”? [closed]

If I give a bank note of 100 and get back three 20 bills and a bunch of coins, I have less money, but more physical units. How could one express it? Assume an informal setting. In other languages, ...
1
vote
0answers
76 views

My grandmother used an idiom “ ought have been a wheelbarrow”

My grandmother (who was of Irish descent)was born in the New England area of NSW, Australia. She used an idiom that she "ought have been a wheelbarrow". I think it meant something about a lack of ...
2
votes
4answers
89 views

What is it called when someone does an action they don't fully understand? [closed]

For example, someone speaking and writing the English language, but not actually knowing how to use it properly.
4
votes
6answers
788 views

How to describe a strong wind?

Could you say 'The gale was blowing about his jacket' ? I'd like to express the repetitive movement of his jacket going from side to side.
29
votes
14answers
7k views

Friendly way of saying “I love you”

In Spanish, Te amo (I love you) has more romantic feeling than saying Te quiero. The last one is used as a friendly way of saying I love you, but without romantic purposes. However, if translated to ...
0
votes
1answer
59 views

If I feel that an answer isn't relevant, how do I express that? [duplicate]

If I feel that an answer isn't relevant to the given question, how can I express it more clearly? I am not able to come up with an appropriate word to describe what I wish to describe, a few ...
0
votes
1answer
72 views

“father to” vs. “father of”

Would it be grammatically correct to write Mister X is father to a son and a daughter or should one preferably choose the preposition of? Mister X is father of a son and a daughter. ...
8
votes
3answers
215 views

Source and meaning of the proverb “Milk says to wine, Welcome friend”

While investigating an unrelated expression, I came across the following proverb in George Herbert, Jacula Prudentum ; or Outlandish Proverbs, Sentences, Etc., second edition (1651): Milk says to ...
2
votes
4answers
102 views

Word for a problem that goes away when a larger thing changes?

What is a word or expression for a problem has effectively gone away because of a larger change that makes the problem no longer a problem? I'm thinking "obviated" or "made unnecessary," but it ...
2
votes
2answers
38 views

How else can “he's really inconsistent” be expressed ? [closed]

How else can "he's really inconsistent" be expressed ? For an article about a sports person.
-1
votes
1answer
49 views

How to express the quality of being fried? [closed]

I want to express the good quality of being fried of some dumplings, the way their almost redness and crispiness etc... What words or expressions would you use to do that?
2
votes
4answers
72 views

An idiom for “don't buy the first thing you see”

I'm looking for a colloquialism for: shop around a bit before you make your decision
3
votes
5answers
159 views

Misuse of the verb allege?

I recently visited Jordan on a business trip. Read the following in a newspaper: Bleeding profusely, she pleaded with the alleged attacker, Mushataq, to take her to a hospital. My ...
1
vote
0answers
64 views

Do people in Colorado typically say “attorney” or “lawyer?”

I'm interested to know if people in the Colorado area say attorney or lawyer more frequently.
2
votes
2answers
39 views

He whose breath is taken

I have a character who sees something breathtaking, and I want to say that "his breath was taken by..." Most results I get for the expression end with "away", which I don't like. so, Can I say ...
2
votes
1answer
35 views

“Less than … it looked like …”

Is this expression common? Example: Less than a mansion it looked like a castle: crenelated roof, lancet windows, cylindrical towers with crosses on top. The reason I asked is because I got 0 ...
2
votes
6answers
69 views

Politician says he will vote in favor of legislation that he hasn't read and will change once elected

Can anyone come up with a few good synonyms/idioms/expressions for a person or politician that will say whatever he/she believes will get him/her the most votes? For example: He/she will vote in ...
0
votes
2answers
65 views

What does it mean to “gum the spoon”?

I recently found out about a new term. It's "gum the spoon". What does it mean? By the various contexts I found, I conjecture that it means to add saliva onto the spoon or to hold the spoon in one's ...
1
vote
1answer
26 views

Phrase experimentation - Marching a trough

I'm trying to touch up this part, and wondering if the above could work as a metaphor. This is my text right now: “George, it's me, .... I can't connect with my money!” he fired while marching ...
0
votes
4answers
132 views

What do you call a document that doesn't need a signature?

Is there a term describing a document that doesn't need to be signed in order to be valid? Edit after several answers and comments: An electronic banking system can generate documents for a user to ...
6
votes
5answers
863 views

What is an expression for a priest not wearing official attire?

Is there an English expression for a priest or monk not wearing his religious attire? (any Christian doctrine, or even more general). Clarification: I'm trying to say that someone looks like an ...
0
votes
1answer
33 views

Become / get, successfully / effectually, together / common / united [closed]

Currently I'm looking for a product name. The goal of this product is that everyone can get successful with the power of a network (together, united) But I don't know which combination makes sense: ...
2
votes
1answer
87 views

Meaning and usage of “to be done for”

(Not to be confused with "to be done with stng") I've seen several times the expression "to be done for", not followed by anything. Here is an example not so far from what I could actually read or ...
4
votes
2answers
176 views

The right phrase for “stand with the name” for a product?

There is a well known german phrase: Dafür stehe ich mit meinem Namen Which indicates, that a person or company promises quality of his/their product. And to underline it, they guarentee this ...
27
votes
27answers
10k views

Derogatory term for a corporate employee

I’m looking for a derogatory term for a person who works in a big, international business. In Polish we have a few informal words for that, like korpoludek (“corpo little guy”) and korpoczłowiek ...
2
votes
1answer
257 views

Is it acceptable to say “the why”?

Is it proper English to say, The why? An example: I need to find out the why. To me, the, doesn't belong in this sentence. Note: TV personality Dr. Oz often says "the why".
0
votes
1answer
25 views

“Depend just as much on”? [closed]

Moore and Noyce shared a vision, recognizing that success depended just as much on intellectual pizzazz as on Intel's ability to deliver a product. What does this sentence mean? The part ...
2
votes
3answers
128 views

An Englishman has to be quiet when an Irishman talks

When Christopher Hitchens debated Bill Donohue on Hardball the discussion got heated and for lack of moderation they often talked over each other. Donohue (presumably Irish-American) said first that ...
1
vote
3answers
108 views

When someone says, “I have no words,” what does it mean? [closed]

I contacted a former friend to tell her about a rough situation in my life, and she said to me, "I have no words." What did she mean?
2
votes
3answers
86 views

An Idiom/phrase/adjective for an imaginary place where everything is perfect [closed]

A place where unrealistic and impossible things can happen. Is there an idiom/expression/phrase that connotes to such a stretch of the imagination?
2
votes
7answers
625 views

Is calling someone “old school”- offensive/derogatory? [closed]

My colleague, a relatively young school teacher, prefers not to use e-mails. He is digitally absent. During a recent teacher's meeting, while I appreciated his efforts towards content ...
3
votes
1answer
109 views

Is there a term for when the moisture on the inside of your nose freezes when breathing in on a very cold day?

On particularly cold days, the moisture inside of one's nose freezes instantly with every inhalation. It is a peculiar sensation as if all the hairs inside your nose have been glued together. I was ...