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
58 views

English equivalent for “Just eat the appam. Why count the holes?”

In Malayalam/Indian, there's an expression: Appam thinnal pore, kuzhi ennano! It literally translates to: Just eat the appam. Why count the holes! It implies that one should just enjoy the ...
2
votes
2answers
36 views

Term for a legislative bill not intended to pass?

Is there a term for a bill that is introduced in a legislative body with no intent of it actually being passed, but more as a form of protest or a game of oneupmanship or legal chicken? For example, ...
0
votes
0answers
12 views

Term for a storyline that splits in two

Is there a term for a storyline that splits into two points of view? For example, two characters who travel together split paths and plot unfolds in two different timelines. It can probably be applied ...
4
votes
2answers
103 views

What do hotel or restaurant employees call the place at the back where tables and chairs are arranged..?

What do hotel or restaurant employees call the place at the back where tables and chairs are arranged..? It isn't a kitchen or a staff lounge but, it's a place for servers to prepare things needed ...
3
votes
4answers
55 views

Is there an English equivalent to “Do not expose others' misdeeds”?

In Bahasa, the phrase "Jangan membuka aib orang lain" is used to ask other people to not expose one's bad deeds. An example of this would be: [After A breaks B's vase with C watching] A: C, ...
2
votes
4answers
53 views

Trying to find an expression/idiom to match these two phrases about providing bad solutions?

Say I'm looking for a job and a friend of mine gives me an option; but their offer is horrible(say working for less than minimum wage, 80+hour weeks, no vacation, doesn't use my degree; etc.) What is ...
3
votes
3answers
51 views

Word or sentence to describe a process

I am looking for a word or sentence to describe a process in formal terms. A process that is not an "Automated process" or "Manual Process" but somewhere in between. A word or sentence if you must, ...
4
votes
2answers
78 views

What do you call someone moving arms and legs around much?

I'm trying to find a word or short description for someone who... ...May well wave their arms and legs around, but not in a clumsy, clowny way, not randomly, not without a purpose. ...Is not afraid ...
-1
votes
0answers
17 views

How well does the “A” fit in the “B”?

I'm trying to find two words that describe how well a single person/object/thing would fit in with some kind of situation/grouping/place/things. A few examples: "How well does the 'Student' fit in ...
0
votes
3answers
55 views

“Giver of false hope” translation?

The term "PHP" (no, not the programming language) stands for pemberi harapan palsu which roughly means giver of false hope in English. An example of usage would be: "Sialan lo, PHP ya! Katanya mau ...
7
votes
6answers
1k views

“high-end clientele” is to “low-end clientele” as “carriage trade” is to what?

Is there a phrase in English that works as a direct antonym to the idiomatic carriage trade, that is, the wealthy patrons of a store, restaurant, hotel, etc.; the elite clientele? carriage trade: ...
0
votes
0answers
47 views

Word for knowing what one wants to do, but not knowing how to do it [on hold]

I often imagine my dream softwares, but I do not know how to program them into reality. What words, that are more fitting than impotent and ignorant, are there for a practical, non-verbal "tip of the ...
6
votes
2answers
54 views

The feeling when a familiar object is missing or in a different place

If someone has misplaced a familiar object like a wedding ring or wristwatch, they might say they "feel naked without it", or that it's "like a missing tooth". It's not exactly "pining" for ...
1
vote
3answers
57 views

What is the name for those images with quotes in them?

Googling for picture quotes results in many images like this one: It's not about motivation, it can be any type, like this one: I believe there is a better word for this, but I can't remember ...
26
votes
5answers
522 views

Is there a word for “a person from another race”?

I am searching for a word that means ‘of another race’ to be used in context of a sentence such as "She was deeply protective to her [of other race], foster children." "They shunned the ...
0
votes
1answer
44 views

What is equivalent of brain drain for skilled labour? [on hold]

What is the phrase when you say that there is movement of skilled labour from X country to Y country for better opportunities? Is 'leaching of labour'valid usage? Please suggest some other phrase for ...
1
vote
2answers
158 views

What do you call that annoying toddler that whines about everything?

You know that kid you see in a supermarket with his/her mom, and the kid is all like: "I don't like that", and starts to scream? What is a good word or slang term for that?
11
votes
10answers
2k views

Synonym of 'kangaroo court'

From legal-dictionary.com, kangaroo court is defined as such: [Slang of U.S. origin.] An unfair, biased, or hasty judicial proceeding that ends in a harsh punishment; an unauthorized trial ...
1
vote
1answer
51 views

Is there a word or phrase for this kind of visitation-oriented room?

Let me give two examples: Bank You are a customer in a bank office making a loan. The room might look like a regular office, but really this part of the office is very limited. This part of the ...
5
votes
5answers
143 views

Is there an English equivalent to the Indian proverb-“If you have the ability, even grass can be your weapon”?

The original Indian saying (in Tamil) is வல்லவனுக்கு புல்லும் ஆயுதம் (Vallavanuku Pullum Aayudham) Translation : For the capable, even grass can be a weapon Meaning: If you have the ability and ...
26
votes
20answers
5k views

Is there any curse/ swear equivalent for this Persian curse? “ May your head be covered by soil!”

There is a curse/ swear in Persian that literally means " May your head be covered by soil" and implies that " you'd better die and be buried /be underground!"( you are not important). We use it in ...
2
votes
3answers
121 views

Succinct phrase for “work well under pressure”?

So I was working on my resume, but it literally took me two hours to come up with a succinct phrase for "work well under pressure". So far I could think of phrases like " pressure performer " or ...
-2
votes
1answer
72 views

How to differentiate meanings of “awesome”? [closed]

I often use the literal ("old?") meaning of "awesome" in an equivocation: I smell awesome right now. Then they say: No, you smell terrible. And the punchline comes: I'm using the ...
1
vote
0answers
23 views

Lack of time *and* Time is precious [closed]

I'm certain that there exist a unique phrase that means both "Lack of time" and "Time is precious". When I try to remember what the phrase is, I'm constantly having the association of a precious ...
1
vote
2answers
55 views

What's a word that captures the sentiment of “inside looking outwards”?

I'm attempting to title a paper I'm writing about the traditions of a certain group of people; and my analysis is focused on what these traditions mean to them, and how they see others interpret their ...
4
votes
3answers
207 views

Word/phrase for when someone places a bet which is similar to your own

If you are making a bet or wager with someone, and you are both trying to guess as close to a particular value as you can (for example, date, weight or similar) then one particular strategy is to wait ...
9
votes
10answers
2k views

Synonymous idiom for “more x than you can shake a stick at”

It's very difficult to search the web for synonymous idioms, at least for me. I found Origin of "More X than you can shake a stick at", but I'm really trying to find a similar phrase to it. ...
0
votes
3answers
75 views

Word/phrase to describe a person who always searches to benefit from other people? [duplicate]

What is a formal word/phrase that describes a person who always searches to benefit from other people? It is hard to recall the word in my own language to translate. So I decided to give it a try and ...
0
votes
0answers
30 views

Understandable word for someone with normal vision

In the process of writing a document relating to an accessibility product I mention people who are blind and people who are visually impaired. However I cannot think of a good word with the average ...
1
vote
2answers
43 views

Term for choosing by not choosing [duplicate]

Is there a term for rejecting a proposal by not actively endorsing/confirming/voting for it? Like a veto, but by abstention, rather than active participation. Alternatively, a term for "A choice ...
3
votes
6answers
129 views

A word/phrase for someone who changes the world

For a fantasy writing project,1 I am looking for a title or epithet for a character that emphasizes that the character has changed the world. Either a single word, or a phrase that could reasonably be ...
-2
votes
1answer
52 views

Opposite of redundant [closed]

I'm looking for the opposite of redundant in the following context. "The danger is that we have redundant work executed, but as also xxxx work" so in the meaning of "too less", "we are missing ...
27
votes
14answers
5k views

English equivalent for “Don't burn your house to smoke out a rat!” [duplicate]

In my language there's a saying which literally translates to Don't burn your house to smoke out a rat! It advises us to use solutions that are appropriate to the magnitude of the problem. ...
15
votes
13answers
3k views

What are words that describe “the people” in the same way that “the machine” describes the ruling class?

The powerful ruling class has been described as "the machine", "the man", "patricians", "the establishment", and "big brother". I am looking for similar words to describe the 99%, aka the plebeians ...
3
votes
2answers
57 views

Is it valid to say 'in the presence of something' [closed]

The title I chose for my thesis is: Finding Synapses in Data in the Presence of Artifacts I think this is bad language and am unhappy with it but I am not a native speaker. I want to convey ...
0
votes
1answer
41 views

Specific term for perception bias of content

People from Rancho Cucamonga are special. If a movie is filmed or set in their town, they unswervingly feel that the movie is better than others. Especially since it is so rare and … special. They ...
3
votes
4answers
67 views

Phrase Request: “electronics for military use”

I am translating a CV into English. One of the mentioned companies is (directly translated): An international company operating in the industry of electronics for military use I could write this ...
1
vote
3answers
47 views

A lot of - but not hard - work

I'm looking for a word or phrase to describe how something takes simple work, but a lot of it. For example, sorting a stack of documents fits the bill as it is not hard if you had a few, but really ...
16
votes
5answers
2k views

English equivalent for “Worm that lives in poison.”

In my language, there's a saying which literally translates to Worm that lives in poison. It is used while judging people who keep bad company as being bad themselves. It is used to address ...
0
votes
2answers
62 views

“To jog in stride with someone, particularly in silence.”

Looking for a single word, or short phrase, in any language, that approximates to that concept: "to jog in stride with someone, particularly in silence." This - if our collective wisdom can find it - ...
5
votes
4answers
338 views

English equivalent for “Picking a fight with your mother because you…”

In my language, there's a funny saying which literally translates to Picking a fight with your mother at home because you lost a fight at the marketplace. It means taking out one's frustration ...
0
votes
0answers
36 views

Passive version of “process” (verb)

The context is programming, if you're wondering. It's pretty straightforward to tell a Processor to Process something, but I wonder what you would tell the Processee. Is there some verb that means ...
1
vote
3answers
35 views

what is another way to say become a trendsetter?

The field is nursing and the quoted person is a professor of nursing speaking about her students being trendsetters. I need a transitional sentence to lead up to this quote and speaks to the students ...
42
votes
24answers
6k views

Is there a similar English phrase for this Tamil proverb - “Lavish outside home yet starving inside of it”?

In Tamil, a south Indian language, there is a saying which roughly translates into English as: Lavish outside home, starving inside of it. Background : This proverb has a mocking tone and ...
1
vote
6answers
112 views

English equivalent for “An ignorant child learns when it itches”

In my language, there's a saying which literally translates to "An ignorant child learns when it itches." It's a kind of warning that means If people refuse to realise the magnitude of a ...
2
votes
5answers
114 views

What is a positive-language-focused term for an attempted solution that didn't work?

There is a quote: I have not failed. I've just found 10,000 ways that won't work. I'd like to use a term that is devoid of negative connotation for those "ways that won't work". Terms like ...
2
votes
2answers
49 views

Idiom for all at once or none at all

I'm looking for a creative and relatively familiar idiom to describe something that needs to be handled a specific way because an activity comes in waves. Specifically I'm looking to describe ...
5
votes
1answer
57 views

Best or technical term for the act of including a *purposeful gaff* in writing?

Although I suspect there are applicable examples in literature and newsprint, the specific context here is the online practice of either including a dud, or excluding an obvious/needed example in a ...
4
votes
4answers
35 views

term or phrase representing a placeholder or variable

How can I express in standard American English that events occur "every X days" or end "after X occurrences" — here, "X" is a placeholder for a variable and unknown quantity — without ...
1
vote
1answer
53 views

How to tell someone that they are wrong? [closed]

I'm looking for a phrase which I could use to tell a child (age 10-14) that their answer is wrong, without offending them of course. This would be something I could on a test.... Any suggestions? PS ...