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

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2answers
65 views

How to compare between two incomparable things, yet similar in some aspects?

I want to compare between results seen in healthy cells and in tumor cells. The same finding was seen in both types of cells. I know that this is not like apples-to-apples comparison, but still both ...
4
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2answers
173 views

How to say this using catch-phrases: “Test A requires a lot of tissue samples, whereas test B doesn't.”?

I am about to prepare a talk that would compare two tests in the medical field. The old test requires 5 different sites of the organ to be sampled in order to have a result. The other test (which is ...
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3answers
62 views

What's the best way to say: “Brands who trust our work”

What's the best way to say: "Brands who trust our work" or "Brands that trust in our work"?
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3answers
61 views

Is a tin-ear one who dislikes music or one who dislikes new popular music? Why?

I know folks who couldn't hear well used to use a tin-ear to help but I don't understand the connection between a tin-ear and a dislike of music or of new popular music.
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1answer
84 views

Why does the word “joed” mean weary, tired, exhausted, fatigued, etc.?

The word "joed" is a word I use frequently to describe my feeling tired or exhausted. As a child, I used to hear my grandfather say "I feel joed" before he would sit down for a respite or turn in; ...
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3answers
60 views

'Hot water heater' versus 'Water heater'

I've heard 'Hot water heater' and 'Water heater' being used interchangeably to refer to an appliance which generates a supply of heated water. The wording of 'Hot water heater' feels redundant, as ...
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3answers
68 views

Using I hope in professional environment [closed]

I need to state that my goal is to answer some answers. Starting my e-mail with the "I hope..." does not sound professional. Any alternatives you can provide me with?
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2answers
60 views

Is there a word for “one who decides (something)”? [duplicate]

"Decider" is not the word I am looking for. It is used only in context of a game. Can anyone help me with a word for "one who decides (something)", in general context?
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1answer
73 views

Etymology of “second to none”

second to none To the ears of a non-native speaker, mine anyway, this expression sounds very laborious. Where does it come from? Is it not contrary to the idea that English is a ...
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3answers
133 views

Why does to “take a powder” mean to run away or to leave?

From Flappers to Rappers: American youth slang by Dr. Thomas Dalzell cites "take a powder" as a 1930s expression meaning to run away or to leave. Does anyone have any ideas why taking a powder would ...
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2answers
56 views

Why does to “cheek it” mean to bluff?

From Flappers to Rappers: American Youth Slang by Dr. Thomas Dalzell cites the 1930s expression "cheek it" as meaning to bluff. I don't quite understand why and I'm hoping someone on here may help me ...
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1answer
47 views

How do we use 'Stockholm syndrome' in a sentence?

How do we use 'Stockholm Syndrome' in a sentence? Can it be used for the things we hate?
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3answers
61 views

Synonym for the word “time card”

I'm looking for a synonym for the word "time card" or "clock card". I try to find a word for a card with which you can track your work times on a certain device your employe installs for its workers. ...
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3answers
68 views

“to spate” as a verb

As I was reading a book I came upon the following passage: And when rain at length arrives, how beneficent is its coming! Boisterously, richly, merrily it spates forth, like the large, hot ...
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2answers
47 views

Have a sexed up weekend ahead! - is this correct [closed]

Have a sexed-up weekend ahead! This is what my friend told me. He wanted to convey that I have a good/crazy/exciting weekend. Does it make sense?
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2answers
51 views

'Master of the universe' or 'Nucleus of the universe'

Can I say: No one likes man thinks he is a nucleus of universe. I've just seen on some website the use of "master of the universe" I'd better use this word? And please correct my grammar.
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2answers
29 views

Rate & Review action?

What do we call the action of rating (with stars) and reviewing (commenting) together?
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5answers
2k views

You can’t have your cake and eat it too

If you've had your cake, haven't you already eaten it? So why can't you have it and eat it too? It doesn't seem to make sense.
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2answers
54 views

Is there a word or expression which defines a text or sentence which does not explain all of its terms? [closed]

I think I summed it up in the title, but to be more specific, check this sentence: "ECM is an umbrella term covering document management, web content management, search, collaboration, records ...
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4answers
102 views

Can you spot if this is written by a native English speaker or not? [closed]

"An effective project plan can boost the success of the project being undertaken. It measures the project’s feasibility and assesses the risk associated. The plan helps weigh the decisions that are ...
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3answers
80 views

Do you hand something over or off?

I am looking for the correct American English expression and spelling. My particular context is that I am responsible for something precious, which I give to somebody else, who is then responsible ...
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2answers
78 views

Why FYI is called slang word?

FYI is "For Your Information" But it is considered as a slang word: http://www.internetslang.com/FYI-meaning-definition.asp why?
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25answers
10k views

Is there a secular, non vulgar alternative to “for heaven's sake”?

I know for heaven's sake, for Pete's sake, for God's sake and for Christ's sake. All of those, however are religious references. The only non-religious equivalent phrases I know are for fuck's sake ...
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1answer
52 views

Old slang words for a kiss--cherry smashes and honey cooler--why?

Cherry smashes are defined as feeble kisses and a honey cooler is simply a kiss. Cherry smashes was slang from the 1920s and a honey cooler was slang from the 1930s. Any ideas why feeble kisses would ...
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1answer
54 views

Is an excessively shy person a “gussie”?

I'm sure most of us are familiar with a shrinking violet as being an excessively shy person; however, while reading from Flappers to Rappers: History of American Youth Slang Dr. Dalzell defines a ...
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2answers
115 views

Please explain the meaning of the word “distance” in the sentence

Distance sometimes lets you know who's worth keeping and who's worth letting go Unless the distance is playing games with the vision and its all a mirage, a vagueness of a dream
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2answers
168 views

Origin of the phrase “on the wrong side of history”

I've been hearing the phrase "on the wrong side of history" a lot lately, most recently today when President Obama said that Russia was on "the wrong side of history" for its actions in Ukraine. ...
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1answer
47 views

Why does “to wire” mean to trick?

A Collection of College Words & Customs written by Benjamin Homer Hall in 1856 defines a "wire" as a trick and I'm curious to know if it is of any relation to a magician using invisible wire to ...
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1answer
59 views

What does “can be said to do / to be” something mean?

The various modern revolutions in physics, in psychology, in politics, even in literary style, have not escaped his intelligent notice, but they can scarcely be said to have influenced him deeply. ...
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1answer
54 views

How does the word “gas” relate to cheating and deception?

According to A Collection of College Words & Customs by Benjamin Homer Hall, written in 1856 I believe, gas is defined as cheating or deceiving someone. Any ideas why that may be?
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1answer
77 views

Why were “skin” and “niggle” slang words meaning to hurry?

I've read in a book From Flappers to Rappers: The Study of American Youth Slang two words used commonly within the same decade 1900-1910 meaning to hurry were "skin" and "niggle". I'm puzzled as to ...
2
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1answer
71 views

Swapping Words in 'Deep' Sayings

Here's an example of a common swapping that happens when people want to sound profound: The clothes don't make the man It's the man that makes the clothes What is this form of swapping called?
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1answer
48 views

“I like it a tick better” - proper English?

There's a German expression, "einen Tick besser", which means "just a little bit better". Does that same expression exist in English? I just wrote this comment on a Stack Overflow question: I ...
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11answers
2k views

[S]he has the ears of a …?

Often, when overheard from far away, I find myself saying/thinking: [S]he has the ears of a hawk! Which doesn't really make sense as hawks aren't particularly well known for their sense of ...
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3answers
106 views

Is the expression “Say your piece” or “Say your peace”?

I have googled this one and seen arguments for both sides. Say your piece would imply that you've had the opportunity to make your part of the statement on the subject. Say your peace would imply ...
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3answers
249 views

What is the origin of the phrase “Crazier than a sh*thouse rat!”?

I can't seem to find an origin to this particular phrase. Can anyone shed some light on what makes sh*thouse rats particularly crazy? I also wonder about the origin of the similar *Bat-shit crazy". ...
2
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2answers
116 views

Idioms or phrases for “Be it good or bad”

Can you suggest some idioms or phrases for Be it good or bad? For example: Be it good or bad, television has become an indispensable part of our lives.
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3answers
99 views

Need native expressions for “something happened but no one wants to undertake the responsibility”

Are there native expressions in oral and formal writing English about something happened - mostly negative incidents or events, but those, who should be responsible for it , don't want to undertake ...
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1answer
54 views

Alternative phrasing to “getting work done”

I find myself using the phrase "I need to get some work done" in a misleading way. At any given time, I'm working on projects for my employer, projects as a podcaster, projects at my home or just ...
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1answer
69 views

what does 'the roll of duck tape' mean? [closed]

what does 'the roll of duck tape' mean ? Would you please give me some examples to know how to use it?
2
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2answers
227 views

What does “not for nothing” mean?

Is the meaning of the phrase "Not for nothing" literal, or idiomatic, and if idiomatic, what does the idiom mean? If you have a reference more reliable than urban dictionary, please share it. Here are ...
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1answer
62 views

Meaning of “Make safety first but make it last” [closed]

On the back of a school bus, I saw this text: "Make safety first but make it last" I deduced that it could mean "Make safety first, and make it last a long time" -OR- "Make safety first, and be ...
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3answers
119 views

A title or descriptive phrase for someone who likes to share

I'm building a mobile app that has a series of achievements that may be awarded based on the users interaction. The app itself is an easter egg hunt. One of the achievements is for sharing (via ...
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2answers
46 views

“Find out about my solutions”

"Come visit me to find out about the solutions" find out about sounds weird to me: what are some synonyms to better express the concept?
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1answer
61 views

Why does “all to the mustard” mean excellent?

While reading P.G. Wodehouse's The Inimitable Jeeves I came across a fascinating expression of "all to the mustard!" It is defined as meaning excellent. Why? Can anyone please help me understand this ...
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1answer
64 views

Priscilla--a girl who prefers to stay home? Who could this term be resultant of?

From Flappers to Rappers, a book of American youth slang, records "Priscilla" as a 1920s slang word for a girl who prefers to stay home. I'm curious to know why they've chosen that name. Is there any ...
1
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1answer
99 views

Expression to use when you are not dressed or otherwise ready to meet someone

What is the English expression to ask someone if he/she is dressed and "presentable", in the sense that he/she is tidy enough to meet someone else? The word "dressed" does not convince me, because its ...
0
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2answers
78 views

Is a blushing violet the opposite of a shrinking violet?

I understand that "shrinking violet" is used to describe an excessively shy individual. Recently, I encountered the similar-sounding phrase "blushing violet", but the definition given was the very ...
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1answer
42 views

Is “all of shudders” a valid expression?

A google search didn't come up with a single good example, but would it be okay to say something like: He was all of shudders.
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1answer
66 views

Why does pine feather period signify the period in a woman's life when she blossoms?

In a book titled From Flappers to Rappers it lists youth slang from the 1920s and one of the terms it lists is pine feather period. Pine feather period is defined as a period in a woman's life when ...