This tag is for questions seeking a phrase that fits a meaning. If you're specifically seeking only a single word, see the "single word requests" tag too.

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1
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2answers
35 views

A word for 'independent episodes'

When we have a series of episodes where every single episode depends on and develops from the previous, we may call that a sequel, or maybe a continuum. Now let us say that we have a collection of ...
0
votes
1answer
28 views

Need a concise term to denote “request to borrow”

The context is that I am developing a web application, in which there's the concept of allowing one party to request to borrow items from another party. Up to this point, we have been calling it ...
2
votes
2answers
122 views

Can “barge in” be used as an informal and quirky way of saying “come in” and “come on in”?

I am looking for a specific US expression. An informal way of saying "all right, come on in" to a very good friend in a situations as follows: The (drunk) friend who is barging into my suit suite ...
14
votes
5answers
2k views

What do you call a Q&A user who posts a question but never checks back?

I have searched for a term that describes users who post questions and then disappear without trace. These users will post and write their questions in a great flurry, sometimes ignoring the basic ...
4
votes
9answers
834 views

What is the word to describe a situation when rival gangs come together to figure out who is stronger?

a very common situation when 2 hostile groups,gangs come against each other to fight and dominate? It could be a slang word, what is the occurrence of this situation? I can think of gang fight, but ...
0
votes
2answers
84 views

Casual way of saying “send me an email”

Is there a more casual way to say "send me an email"? I'm going to put this at the bottom of the "contact" section of a website. "Pop me an email" is the only one I've managed to come up with.
1
vote
1answer
33 views

Starting a book with this sentence, is it ok? [on hold]

I'd like to start a book with a sentence like this: This book is about X, so why should it start with Y? In fact, the book is already written, but I'd like to get the first few pages absolutely ...
1
vote
2answers
63 views

better word for items on a menu

Is there a better word or phrase for an item on a menu than "menu item"? I'm talking about restaurant menus, not user interface menus. "Menu item" is so dry... "Restaurant dishes" doesn't work very ...
0
votes
0answers
40 views

What do you call a registered taxpayer with no tax obligations?

What do you call a registered taxpayer with no outstanding tax-liability? I'll explain my hesitation with the term taxpayer: I take that payer means someone who pays money, so a taxpayer is someone ...
3
votes
3answers
42 views

Describe a fallacious opinion regarding one's own ability

What's a phrase that describes a unfounded tendency of a person to think that he or she is smarter or possesses more skill than average in a competitive environment such as the stock market or say, ...
5
votes
4answers
231 views

A word to describe a person who doesn't use their own products or policies

I am looking for a word or phrase to describe someone that didn't use their own tool, follow their own policy or use their own product, due to some ironic twist of fate. Almost the antithesis of the ...
1
vote
1answer
41 views

Word or phrase describing on/off state

English is not my primary language so I have hard time with this problem. I am currently writing comments to computer code. There is setting that enable/disable some functionality. What would be ...
0
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4answers
71 views

Word that refers to objects found in kitchens

What refers to tools common to the kitchen? For example utensils, plates, bowls, cups, cutting boards etc. At first I thought "kitchen appliances" but usually the phrase refers to electronic devices ...
0
votes
3answers
49 views

I'm looking for a word like “routing out” that also describes a “blind gamble”

When my old dog and I had a regular local park, upon entering, she used to immediately run through all the bushes, hoping to flush out any squirrels. She didn't know if there were any squirrels ...
-2
votes
1answer
27 views

How should I word this? [closed]

Please let me know which is the best way to word the second sentence: Please find for filing in the above reference matter our representation. Request for Hearing was file electronically today. ...
8
votes
5answers
808 views

word or phrase for a smell that sparks nebulous memories of times or places past

I sometimes catch a whiff of something that reminds me very strongly, but very vaguely, of a time in my past. Different whiffs for different times. It's not a single identifiable smell and a single ...
2
votes
3answers
79 views

'at the bottom' - Synonym?

On top = atop, so is there a similar shorter synonym for at the bottom? In general, what are some formal terms describing this issue? How can I find resources on such synonyms?
0
votes
2answers
88 views

Word for thinking of the same thing as someone else?

Do we have a word or phrase for this? For example, we could have two good friends: Person A and Person B. In a conversation, after a certain phrase is said, both say the same thing at once, signifying ...
0
votes
0answers
44 views

Any terms meaning the 'first snow of autumn'?

I am wondering if there is a term for the 'first snow of autumn'. The word I am looking for could come from the semantic field of meteorology, or perhaps farming etc. I know of the terms 'killing ...
0
votes
0answers
27 views

regular exceptions vs. irregular exceptions

Are there any established words or phrases for the "exceptionless exceptions" to a general rule, exceptions that follow more specific rules that have their own logic, as opposed to exceptions that are ...
0
votes
2answers
72 views

WWI Equivalent of “Gotcha!”

I am looking for an equivalent of "Gotcha!", "Made it!" or other exclamatory phrases a World War One Airplane Pilot may use. The specific name is Frank Luke, an airplane ace. He just got out after ...
0
votes
1answer
46 views

A word of phrase for a letter that delivers an “opening charge”

What is a good word or phrase for a letter that issues an "opening charge" to a group of people. In my specific case, I need word for a kind of letter that gives authority and encouragement to a ...
1
vote
2answers
55 views

You are trying to make me emotional

In the course of asking person B to do something (which that person resists, for various reasons) person A is evoking imagery, using flattery or making sentimental appeals with the intention of ...
8
votes
10answers
2k views

What do you call a generic person?

Is there a term for a person who by local standards is normal in his/her behaviour? I mean a person who tends to like the same sports, same teams, same music, and same hobbies. Because in El Salvador ...
2
votes
2answers
60 views

Did you just inter—Wait! Look at that!

What is the lexical technique for expressing an interruption in narrative speech? For example: I was walking down the street when— wait! Look at that! In the example above, I use an em dash, ...
2
votes
4answers
100 views

Is there a common expression for someone who “always holds a mobile phone in hand”?

I would like to know if there is a typical expression or phrase, used by native speakers, for someone who always has their mobile in their hand. I would prefer a spoken expression rather than a ...
15
votes
13answers
3k views

Is there a word or phrase for someone who works hard at night and does not sleep?

All the words or phrases I know for people who stay up at night merely describe the habit of not sleeping (e.g.: a night owl or insomniac) I am looking for a word or phrase with an emphasis on ...
1
vote
1answer
55 views

Dichotomy… trichotomy… what about more than three cases?

Is there a synonym or (concise phrase) for a dichotomy when there is an unspecified number of discrete groups? The exact number is not known, so it is not suitable to write tetrachotomy, hexachotomy, ...
13
votes
8answers
2k views

What do you call a frustrating and inexplicable ending?

I used to be a fan of the TV show Dexter, I say “used to be”, because until the last season it was a thoroughly enjoyable (and) guilty pleasure of mine. However, season 8 ruined it for me. The twists ...
6
votes
10answers
897 views

Is there a word (or phrase) that describe a series of mishaps/misfortunes in one's life?

I don't mean something like 'many hardships' or 'several tragedies'. I'm looking for a word or short phrase that would describe just a really rough spot or time frame in someone's life. For instance, ...
1
vote
6answers
105 views

Is there a general word/phrase for bias against a group? [closed]

I think prejudice is too general. The definition Google gives me for prejudice is: "preconceived opinion that is not based on reason or actual experience." - it doesn't specify that this preconceived ...
2
votes
3answers
65 views

An idiom for “seen clearly” or “plainly”

I'm looking for a way to convey how multiple things are very well seen from a certain vantage point. In my native language there is a very appealing expression for that, that can be translated as ...
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 ...
1
vote
2answers
36 views

Phrasing the main point as a parenthetical

In a blog comment I found myself responding to (what I considered) a foolish point using this format: “‹quotation of the original›” ‹sarcastic over-the-top agreement with the statement› ...
1
vote
1answer
54 views

Name for the behavior of inappropiately hiding or misplacing objects

People with dementia may hide objects, or put objects in strange places, such as keys in the sugar. Is there a name for such erratic behaviour? The lexical field could include verbs such as ...
2
votes
1answer
29 views

Is there a word like segue for tying together two topics post hoc?

A segue is the transition from one topic to another, but I am thinking of a word for tying together two things that have previously been talked about. For example, we're discussing whether cats or ...
2
votes
1answer
74 views

Opposite of 'eyes only'

In secret organisations (at least on TV) there are documents which are marked EYES ONLY meaning that they shouldn't be recorded in any way except for authorised officers to look at them directly. ...
2
votes
3answers
71 views

Single word for profit or loss

I need a single word or short phrase (2 or 3 words at most) that describes revenue minus expenses, that is the net financial gain or loss. It is unknown when applying this term whether the amount is a ...
0
votes
3answers
77 views

Idiom meaning 'a shambles' sounds like /pass potch/?

I'm looking for an idiom that means 'a shambles' or 'a whole mess of various things', and any other reverse definitions of 'a whole mess of various things'. Perhaps "a mare's nest", which I've ...
0
votes
5answers
114 views

Name for the relationship between a person and a person's ancestor?

I feel like there must be a word for this. Like the relationship between me and my grandpa. We are related. But I would like to be more specific. We are related in such a way that he is my ancestor. ...
1
vote
1answer
41 views

another phrase for 'far from business and politics'

Is there any idiomatic expression to convey the meaning such as 'far from a specific topic or an area of activities' in English? These survey conclusions summarize opinions of ordinary users that ...
1
vote
1answer
47 views

Specific word or psychological term?

What is the word or psychological term used for - "Start liking someone whom you hate as time passes, due to being forced to stay with them for long duration of time (say about 10 to 15 days)" - [Some ...
2
votes
2answers
68 views

Is there a word or phrase to describe someone sitting with their legs tucked?

Is there a word or phrase (would prefer word) to describe someone sitting with their legs tucked. I'm not sure if this makes sense, but what I'm attempting to convey is that they are not outstretched ...
1
vote
1answer
27 views

“Like X but a little less Y and a little more Z”

Like X but a (little/lot) less Y and a (little/lot) more Z. Is there a name for this type of comparison? It's not really an analogy (or is it?) It's not a simile or a dissimile. Examples of ...
5
votes
6answers
336 views

What does a cat's tail do?

A friendly dog will wag its tail, especially when it's happy to see his owner. Cats can communicate their approval and appreciation too, but I don't remember ever hearing a cat wagging its tail for ...
1
vote
1answer
62 views

Is there a term for coining a phrase for a word that already exists?

Usually a new term emerges and it becomes necessary to add a qualification to an old word for disambiguation. examples: "mono sound" versus "stereo sound" "analog watch" versus "digital ...
1
vote
1answer
42 views

Technical Term Specifically for Multi-Example Rhetoric

I'm looking for a technical term to describe a rhetorical device. The device I have in mind is when multiple examples are used to support a claim. (See the addendum for specific instances.) My ...
3
votes
3answers
74 views

generic name for deli counter machine

Facial tissues are the generic term for Kleenex; cola is the generic term for Coca-Cola and Pepsi. Is there a generic term for a deli-counter numbering machine?
2
votes
2answers
74 views

What's a better word for “vegetable food products”

I'm looking at describing the demand in vegetable food products in a project. Using the term "vegetable food products demand" seems a bit heavy. I wonder whether there's a better word or phrase for ...
18
votes
13answers
7k views

What do you call a sick person who is lying in bed?

Some conditions require that a person lie in bed all the time until recovered. Is there a name for such conditions or people experiencing them at the moment? For example, I am currently <bed ...