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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0
votes
4answers
113 views

Word for Powerless Position?

Is there a word for someone who holds a position but they have no real power, they just merely have the title but not the power or privileges that come with it? I'm looking for a word with a negative ...
2
votes
2answers
69 views

Word/phrase for describing a relationship/association that could be productive and conterproductive

How to explain such a relationship/association (preferably not in the human context) : Approach A could be regarded as an innovative idea to leverage full potential of system B. In the reverse ...
1
vote
2answers
88 views

Idiom or phrase associated with a person who blame others for his or her fault?

Is there an idiom or phrase associated with a person who can't do some work or something but he or she blames something or somebody else?
1
vote
2answers
88 views

Antonym of “time-critical” or “time-sensitive”

I'm looking for a word or phrase to indicate that something does not need to be rushed/expedited. That isn't to say the subject is unimportant, but merely not sensitive to time. I am using this to ...
-1
votes
1answer
67 views

Within 24 hours, but only during business hours

Our business wants to include a commitment on our voicemail message that we will return the call within 24 hours, but only counting hours on business days. For example, if someone calls on Tuesday at ...
9
votes
12answers
825 views

Idiom or phrase about a situation in which a person has little hope

Is there an idiom or phrase associated with a time when a person has little hope and has to choose between bad and worse options?
2
votes
3answers
166 views

Formal word/phrase conveying the meaning of “top of your game”

In a story I'm writing, two of my characters have the following dialogue: "We've both made mistakes in our approach." "I share your sentiment, brother. It seems we're not at the top of our game ...
0
votes
1answer
70 views

Word/phrase/idiom that means “deliberately chosen”?

Example: The books in this library were extremely colorful, almost as if they'd been [...] to fit the contemporary feel of the library. Maybe hand-picked? That's the only word I can think of. ...
3
votes
10answers
939 views

Single word that describes a group of people that irrationally support a lost cause?

Is there a single word, or a phrase, that can describe a group of people that mindlessly support someone/something regardless of the many obvious flaws they exhibit? I suppose some context is ...
-1
votes
5answers
109 views

What is the best comeback to “how big is your jar file”? [closed]

He started developing 3 months ago and has little to no skills in Java. He told me their system is "500kb" big (.jar file size). We have been developing for over 3.5 years our system, optimizing and ...
2
votes
4answers
151 views

Word or phrase to describe someone who served in the military, didn’t see much real action yet exaggerates their expertise?

NOTE: As I state near the end of the question I am looking for a word or phrase that would specifically describe this kind of self-dellusion on the part of someone who served in military service. So ...
0
votes
3answers
82 views

Term to define a specific tactic used when engaged in an argument

As a tactic to "win" an argument, when one party has accepted responsibility for a specific action, the insatiable second party repeatedly finds/adds/remembers another infraction for the first party ...
0
votes
1answer
32 views

“See figure below” for besides?

In a textbook, to refer to a figure below the text you would say "See figure below." What about for figures beside the text?
26
votes
16answers
4k views

Is there a term for joyriding without stealing a car or endangering myself?

Let's say I buy a Ferrari or Lamborghini, or perhaps borrow one from my parents or a friend. I then proceed to drive it around town and generally just have fun driving the vehicle, with no particular ...
7
votes
7answers
1k views

What would you call someone who has an urge to repay debts / favours?

I'm currently trying to describe such a person who would feel very guilty if they didn't repay a small debt or favour through forgetfulness. e.g. a friend buys the person a drink the last time they ...
4
votes
3answers
528 views

What do we call this type of discourse?

Someone, guilty of a wrongdoing, defends his position by reminding the accusing party that, at some point in time, s/he was guilty of the same wrongdoing too. This is instead of making an apology or a ...
3
votes
1answer
58 views

A verb that means making dimples in dough with fingertips

Is there a verb or baker's term which describes the act of pressing dough with your fingertips to make dimples? Is there a more succinct way of expressing this action? Is the term dimple the most ...
1
vote
1answer
122 views

Section title for explaining where a subject fits into a field of study

A car is a form of transportation. But so is a bicycle. When a paper is discussing where a subject (say the car) fits into such a system and contrasting the car with the bicycle what should that ...
1
vote
1answer
51 views

What does “let's fold that in” mean?

One of my colleagues replied with a suggestion in the group email. I agreed with his suggestion. The other colleague in the group responded "perfect - lets fold that in Andy."
0
votes
2answers
112 views

Gender-specific replacement for fiancée and fiancé

I find that frequently, particularly with the advent of same-sex marriage, fiancée and fiancé are used in a confusing manner. For instance, if a man writes: My fiancé knows all about Java, because... ...
2
votes
8answers
123 views

Word or phrase for someone accepting a story completely & unquestioningly

If someone accepts a version of a story completely, without questioning any part of it, they ..... what? I'm looking for a word or a phrase or a more elegant, eloquent way of saying it.
1
vote
1answer
62 views

Non-pejorative word/phrase for “social justice warrior”

The term "social justice warrior" appears to have been coined as a pejorative term, and Urban Dictionary defines it thus: A pejorative term for an individual who repeatedly and vehemently ...
0
votes
1answer
34 views

Word or phrase for “to create again, but better”

Is there a word or phrase that means both to "re-create" and "improve"? I would like to say "___ our language", meaning to create a new lingua franca from scratch. The word should imply starting over ...
4
votes
4answers
80 views

Another word for lifehacks

I'm looking for a synonym (single-word of short phrase) for the word lifehack. I read Wikipedia article, and checked few online dictionaries. I could not find any synonym. The word is informal and it ...
0
votes
2answers
33 views

Word or phrase for “mechanism/ability to pause machine in a certain condition”

Air conditioner (or any cooling machine) has mechanism/ability to pause cooling a room for a while. If this ability doesn't exist, the room will get very cold and could freeze anything in the room. ...
28
votes
6answers
3k views

Is there a word for the time span between an old king and a new king?

A king suddenly dies, and during the immediate aftermath, the realm is without an official leader (leaving the throne susceptible to usurpers) and the heir is still being notified or is traveling and ...
5
votes
4answers
701 views

Word/phrase for a feature that could be both good and bad for something

Take this scenario: a tool has a specific feature that could be regarded as an invaluable benefit for. However, this feature, if used in opposite direction may be counterproductive. In other ...
0
votes
3answers
65 views

Imagining for future

Guys I am very much doubtful about this sentence I want to say my client " I don't want to put myself in a situation when you Placed me order and I did not have the material" Is is correct if not ...
0
votes
0answers
48 views

What word/phrase describes replacing an example of something with a description of it?

I am trying to explain this situation. Someone has written an example of a behavior: "When Joe goes to the grocery store he should see that it is closed". I replace this with a description of that ...
2
votes
2answers
52 views

Idiom for doing “space age” stuff instead of what is necessary

What is a good way to call someone out who prefers doing the new, cool, and shiny thing over doing what is really necessary?
1
vote
3answers
299 views

Right Good but Left Bad [closed]

While examining the definition/etymology of the adjective sinister, I noticed its senses of EVIL, ILL-FORTUNE, and general inauspiciousness, as well as explicit references to the noun/adjective LEFT. ...
0
votes
4answers
117 views

Word for a particular “weird-looking” pose in a photograph?

By weird-looking I mean something like this, a facial expression that people often use when being photographed: I checked Thesaurus, but the words--freaky, funky, kooky--don't seem to have the ...
0
votes
2answers
93 views

A word for “people who were born on the same day from different mothers”

What could be a word for people who are born on the same day but are not siblings? I am creating a website and matching my college students who were born on same day. I need an appropriate or the ...
1
vote
2answers
58 views

Name for someone who believes that sciences is more than just descriptive

Some people believe that science can answer the 'why?' rather than just 'how can I visualize/model/interpret this?'. It's the attribution of a 'super natural' quality to science as is currently quite ...
1
vote
2answers
52 views

A word or a phrase that encompasses TV shows and movies [duplicate]

I want to think my friend for always providing me with quality TV shows and movies. In my native language there is a single word that describes both of those things. What is the English word or ...
3
votes
2answers
58 views

Phrase/expression for “growing at my own speed”

I'm writing the acknowledgments-section of my thesis and want to thank my academic advisor for his patience and support, and for allowing me to "grow at my own speed". I'm looking for a concise way to ...
2
votes
7answers
98 views

What is a good word I can use for the talking I do with myself in my mind?

'Monologue' seems like a close fit, but I think more people associate it with one-sided conversation. Correct me if I'm wrong. 'Soliloquy' seems to be only concerned with plays and dramas. Can I use ...
0
votes
2answers
49 views

I'm looking for a term, word or phase used to describe the important, but minute, details. Something along the lines of, “it's the little things”

Persons often say, "It's the little things". I'm looking for a word or term that would describe this feeling of a minute detail completing a whole.
15
votes
14answers
1k views

Term for self-serving behavior disguised as altruism? [duplicate]

Once when I was having a hard time a guy said to me, "I'm sorry you're having a hard time, I'll pray for you," in a way that made it clear that he was glad I was having a hard time because it gave him ...
1
vote
1answer
57 views

A verb to describe the development of a wish

I am a non-native speaker. Consider a couple whose wish to have children only recently has ... Well, what? What verb should I use to describe the development of a wish? developed sounds to formal ...
1
vote
8answers
120 views

What is a word that encompasses drugs, supplements, and foods?

I want a word to use to describe a drug, vitamin, mineral, supplement, herb, food, or spice that you can take to treat a disease or that would affect the body. I want to put a label on these things. ...
2
votes
7answers
173 views

What do we call a non-technical person? [duplicate]

I'm writing some text for the website of my hosting company and I simply cannot figure this one out. I currently have the following sentence: We provide reliable hosting for creative ...
3
votes
2answers
64 views

Word/term meaning “conversion from one dialect to another”?

Is there a word in linguistics that means conversion from one dialect to another dialect? In most sources in which I've looked¹, the word "translation" only means conversion of one language to ...
1
vote
1answer
94 views

A word or sentence that makes no sense until you understand the irregular spelling [duplicate]

English has a "intricate" relationship between graphemes and phonemes,i.e. there is no sure way of knowing how to pronounce something by just looking at its written form. Generally any language has ...
3
votes
14answers
872 views

A snappy and inoffensive alternative for “calm your tits” [closed]

I need a non-sexist, non-sexualized aternative instead of "Calm your tits." Clarification: The question comes from the parent of a pre-teen with Tourette Syndrome. The parent (me) needs some ...
0
votes
6answers
113 views

Cold containers don't sweat—what do they do?

In warm, humid climates: If you take a container of something (say, a can of Coke or a jar of mayonnaise) and leave it at room temperature, the outside becomes wet with droplets of water— sometimes ...
0
votes
3answers
60 views

what to call the previous time interval , that is equally long

I have to display some reporting data and am having a bit of trouble with naming the columns. I have: today 1 day ago (yesterday) last 7 days the 7 days before the last 7 days (so today-14 until ...
0
votes
2answers
86 views

Is there a term denoting the writing of words using numbers instead of letters?

Sometimes, more in some languages than in others, a word is spelled using one or more numbers instead of letters. Is there a term for this? The only example I can think of in English is se7en ...
1
vote
2answers
102 views

A person unaware his confidence exceeds his talent [duplicate]

So, yesterday, I got this text message from my own mother: Now, after laughing for a good 5 minutes and then racking my brain for half a day, I still don't know how to help my mom insult this guy. ...
1
vote
3answers
163 views

Word for something that is a perfect replacement of another [closed]

I'm looking for a single word (or phrase) to point to something that is a perfect replacement of another. e.g. This tool is a (perfect replacement/ ?) of a recently produced one. Update: The ...