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

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7
votes
6answers
737 views

Good expression for “things are starting to work”?

Is there a good and meaningful expression for "things are starting to work"? Italians would say "le cose stanno ingranando", where the verb "ingranare" literally translates "to gear". Can it be used ...
12
votes
6answers
1k views

Word/phrase that means a series of problems of increasing severity caused by a small error

Something small goes wrong, and this triggers something slightly bigger, which triggers something slightly bigger, and so on and so forth until you end up with a chain of problems of increasing ...
-2
votes
0answers
26 views

What words or expressions will sound smart? [on hold]

I just learn from youtuber that using in terms of... instead of talking about can be way smarter. Just wanna learn some other usefull expressions. Idioms and slangs are welcome.
12
votes
14answers
2k views

Is there an expression or idiom for something convenient that happens right when you need it to?

Especially if it's something unlikely. Almost as if it could only happen in a movie. For instance, you're about to be robbed and a random cop on patrol arrives at that exact time. What are the chances ...
0
votes
1answer
41 views

Is “more general, still” an acceptable expression?

Are "more general, still", or "more general, yet" acceptable variations of "still more general"?
1
vote
1answer
35 views

Is this girl “piling on agony” or “ throwing a pity party” or what?

Is this girl"piling on agony"? ( I mean she is trying to draw attentions, while her situation is not that bad and scary, she is shedding tears falsely(?), and reacting so exaggeratedly ) What is the ...
0
votes
1answer
29 views

On tense: 'realized that the number of something had been increasing'

Why does a sentence like I realized that the number of cars had been increasing sound strange? I googled "realized that the number of * had been increasing", and then I found only three exmples. ...
0
votes
1answer
59 views

Avoiding Ignorance

Is the phrase "avoid ignorance" idiomatic? In my mind something is wrong about the combination of the verb "avoid" and the noun "ignorance".
0
votes
1answer
144 views

Question/Matter of definition?

A "Definitionsfråga", as it is called in Swedish, is for instance if you talk about what's good and bad, you can remark that it depends on what you mean by good and bad. You could might as well remark ...
0
votes
0answers
20 views

On the referent of 'during that time' / 'meanwhile'

Can during that time refer to a relatively long time? Or can during that time be used regardless of whether the span is long or short? For example, I think (1) is ok: (1) I waited for a bus for 10 ...
0
votes
1answer
26 views

Another way to write, ''Why now''? When people know it is good, but are suspicious of the timing)

Another way to write, ''Why now''? (When people know it is good, but are suspicious of the timing)
3
votes
4answers
105 views

Word or expression for when a person not under pressure is able to see an issue easier than the person under pressure?

Is there a word or expression for how it is easier for someone not under pressure to make a decision versus someone that is under pressure. One example is how a person looking over someone's ...
0
votes
1answer
25 views

'In the ranks' OR 'With the ranks'

Which of the following two phrases is correct? I'd put him right there in the ranks of the best anthropologists out there. OR I'd put him right there with the ranks of the best ...
1
vote
3answers
61 views

Phrase/Idiom for increasing odds of winning by placing multiple bets

I'm looking for a phrase/idiom that represents when you increase your chances of winning some sort of gamble (or event with multiple possible outcomes) by saturating the field with bets. E.g. ...
0
votes
1answer
44 views

Is there an idiom suggesting the following fact: The name of the book belies the theme in it.

E.g.: I answer a question on ELU based on the subject line, however, I realise later that the body of the question provide a different input altogether. The name of the book belies the theme in ...
0
votes
1answer
40 views

“Charges levied” Actually a thing?

I am positive I've heard of "charges levied," as in "criminal charges brought against" (e.g. the sentence "The charge levied against my client is unfounded."). However, while searching for a ...
2
votes
1answer
90 views

Is there a term for someone who uses wordsl like “thee” & “thine” in their daily language?

I'm curious if there is a word for someone who uses "thee" or "thine" or other words like these in their daily language?
8
votes
4answers
139 views

A term for someone denying an accusation but appearing guilty as a result

The situation being when you are accused of something, and provide a logical reason why you wouldn't (not couldn't) do such a thing, and such an explanation only makes you sound more guilty. For ...
0
votes
0answers
28 views

English sentence interpretaiton [on hold]

In general conditions of the works contract, it is mentioned that schedule of rates/price schedule is inluded "The costs and risks of all rents, royalties, licenses, permits, permission and other ...
0
votes
3answers
56 views

What does “delinquent” mean in this context? [on hold]

I'm more or less aware of the meanings of the word delinquent. However, I can't decide what it exaclty means in the following quote which is from god is not Great by Christopher Hitchens and where he ...
1
vote
3answers
106 views

Good Luck **in** all your endeavors' versus Good Luck **to** all your endeavors'

What is the difference between 'I am currently busy with family stuff so I really don't know when is a good time to catch up. Good Luck in all your endeavors' versus 'I am currently busy with family ...
4
votes
6answers
2k views

What does “I have no idea what I'm talking about” mean? [closed]

Currently I am learning English language. I found something that I don't know what it means. Some people on the internet put their disclaimer using one sentence I have no idea what I'm talking ...
7
votes
4answers
12k 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 ...
-1
votes
1answer
27 views

English Sentence interpretation

Under the schedule of rates of a commercial contract it is specified that schedule of prices includes "All rents, royalties, licenses, permits, permissions and any other fee, duty, penalty, levy, ...
0
votes
2answers
71 views

What is the opposite for “thin-skinned”? [on hold]

What is the idiom or term for describing a usually respectful and nice person who is not easily offended by others' criticism, advice, jokes, or insults? ( I know the opposite is "thin-skinned", but ...
0
votes
2answers
70 views

(go) off the boil

"(go)off the boil" seems to mean "past the crisis" in British English. What is the origin/etymology of this expression? Is it used nowadays?
1
vote
3answers
68 views

What is the job title of these municipal officers?

In some countries,( specially Asia) some vendors spread their stuffs for sale on the ground ( upper picture), and thereby cause trouble for the pedestrians comeing and going. For preventing this , ...
0
votes
1answer
41 views

bleed inside out/got-have got

I've been wondering if there is the expression "I bleed inside out" or if it is correct. For example "someone or something makes me bleed inside out" - as we say "it breaks my heart". And actually I ...
3
votes
3answers
113 views

What does “… which is somewhat long in tooth” mean, and what is the source of the phrase? [on hold]

This is the complete sentence where I found it. It is from an online training about the Linux operating system. e4defrag is part of the e2fsprogs package and should be on all modern Linux ...
2
votes
1answer
38 views

Meaning of “there’s a fire burning in someone's bones”

What is the meaning of the expression "there’s a fire burning in someone's bones" in below and when does it is said: there’s a fire burning in my bones And I still believe.
0
votes
3answers
74 views

What is the meaning of the phrase 'word of hand'?

I've heard somewhere the phrase "word of hand". What does "word of hand" mean? Can it mean something like "word of advice/help/aid", similarly to the phrase "to give hand to somebody"? UPDATE: ...
0
votes
2answers
38 views

Can we use “I can put you down..” when enlisting someone for an appointment?

For example, "I can put you down on a weekend tour." As far as i know, when you use the phrase "Put you down" it's more of embarrassing someone or it could also mean that you want to kill that ...
4
votes
5answers
136 views

Idiom/expression that means “canceling” an event from your calendar?

This is a bit tricky because checking off and crossing out could mean that I marked those items as finished. What I want to convey is that I changed my mind and decided not to do those items. ...
8
votes
17answers
2k views

What do you call someone who is so inappropriate that they are appropriate?

So we have a guy in my office. He can say almost anything. Race jokes, gender jokes, he is just really inappropriate about everything but funny. He is not a racist or sexist and gets along with ...
0
votes
1answer
61 views

“He cooked me a soup with a lot of hot oil”

I'm looking for an English equivalent to a Persian expression which means this person got me in a lot of trouble. Literally translated, the expression is this person cooked a soup for me that had too ...
0
votes
1answer
35 views

How to request someone to start a process?

I am an engineer dealing with other companies(vendors). Our company has to sign a Non-Disclosure agreement(NDA) with the vendor before we start any discussion. Now, the NDA signing is a process that ...
1
vote
4answers
3k views

Origins and meaning of “Put your money where your mouth is”

I heard this phrase uttered by a Canadian (from Vancouver) once; it left me in awe and elicited my curiosity. Wikipedia was not helpful. What is its origin? Is this expression used more in certain ...
8
votes
11answers
1k views

“Calling a spade a spade”: synonymous expressions?

I'm looking for expressions that are equivalent to "calling a spade a spade." In some environments and verbal contexts, this phrase needs to be avoided -- please take my word for it. Thank ...
2
votes
2answers
57 views

What are some synonymous phrases for the phrase “Turning Criminal”?

I need suggestions for different ways to say "turning criminal," as in "He began turning criminal, committing illegal acts instead of abiding by the law."
3
votes
5answers
181 views

What can we call “ an employee who is under-productive but the quality of his work is enviable”

A pleasant expression for an employee who has remained under-productive despite several feedback. (QUANTITATIVELY WORST) There are workers who are unable to churn up BIG numbers but the ...
0
votes
2answers
70 views

What are some actual polite words for filthy words? [on hold]

I have a habit of cussing a bit. I don't wanna use cute words for filthy words. I wanna use polite sounding words, that mean the same as the filthy sounding cuss words.
5
votes
2answers
86 views

What is the verb or expression for describing some kids in this situation?

Suppose there are some naughty kids who are playing with each other in a room, they nudge each other and wrestle and climb (?) on each other! I want to tell them to stop. Which verb should I use? ...
1
vote
1answer
55 views

Usage of “give it a read”

Is the usage of the phrase "give it a read" correct? For instance, "Hey, I have attached my essay. Do give it a read and let me know what you think".
0
votes
2answers
58 views

To be sound in doing something?

I've looked up each and every possible meanings of sound. I've reduced the options to two or so. But I still find it hard to ascertain the meaning of sound and the way its is used in this context. ...
0
votes
2answers
63 views

What does “ have impact” mean? [closed]

I am reading a novel and there are some confusing expressions like the following sentenses. ...feel a little dissatisfied with the kind of impact I was having. Why does he feel dissatisfied? ...
0
votes
5answers
98 views

Is there a one-word for an act of proactively introducing oneself?

I work for a technology company, and we are associating with another company. So this guy from the other company wrote me an email introducing himself and offering to help me out with anything I ...
11
votes
9answers
3k views

What's an item called that was required to progress in a video game, but now isn't?

This question was inspired by an Arqade question: How do I save a Destiny warp drive?. The premise is this: In order to progress to mission 3 (or 4 etc.) you must complete the second mission. The ...
-3
votes
1answer
36 views

I lost my temper in Domino's pizza the other day and ended up pushing the bloke “behind the till” [closed]

I lost my temper in Domino's pizza the other day and ended up pushing the bloke behind the till. What is the meaning of "till" here ? Is it preferred to use such formations in general ...
211
votes
38answers
84k views

Is there a non-sexual phrase for sleeping with someone?

The phrase "sleeping with someone" often means "having sex." What is the origin of this sexual connotation? Is there a non-sexual equivalent of this phrase to express sleeping with someone without ...