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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2
votes
2answers
67 views

The name of this “incredulous” face expression?

A very similar expression to the one I mean can be seen here (the girl at 1:38). Mouth slightly open (upper teeth showing), eyes almost or at least slightly closed, head also slightly tilted to one ...
5
votes
1answer
96 views

Translation of German “Es wird nichts so heiß gegessen, wie es gekocht wird”

A German speaker wrote: As the German saying goes: You never eat the food as hot as it is cooked. This is a literal translation of the proverb, "Es wird nichts so heiß gegessen, wie es gekocht ...
24
votes
14answers
3k views

An idiomatic phrase meaning that you are aware of a coming change based on minor signals you've observed over time

I feel like there's a phrase that people sometimes use in order to indicate that they have been aware of an impending change or event. The phrase draws on the metaphor of a soldier placing his ear to ...
16
votes
3answers
2k views

A word for a period covering two years

Specifically the phrase "two years". Just like how you can say two moons for “two months”. I've thought of: "two periods" but that doesn't seem right, and "two seasons" but not quite sure if it is ...
3
votes
5answers
255 views

Phrase similar to pull one's weight

I need a phrase to express gratitude for the additional work on a specific topic someone did while I was busy. I was thinking Thanks to X for pulling a lot of weight doing Y while I was busy but ...
4
votes
3answers
408 views

**The** word for the military action of shooting several targets at once

In the Maersk Alabama hijacking, the seals took three shots at once, killing all three pirates simultaneously. I was watching the reproduction and I remember the analyst naming a specific term. What ...
3
votes
1answer
49 views

politically correct term for “poor man's ___” [duplicate]

I used the term "poor man's ____" to talk about a less expensive but less useful alternative. One of my colleagues called me out that some people might find it offensive. Is there another term I could ...
1
vote
4answers
70 views

How can I write this in a more formal way? [closed]

Is there a formal way to say "from the horse's mouth"?
0
votes
2answers
93 views

Phrase for “able to concentrate for long periods of time”

I am looking for a word or phrase that describes someone who is able to concentrate and work for long periods of time without taking a break. An example would be a computer programmer who can sit in ...
-1
votes
2answers
43 views

How to paraphrase a 3 step process in one sentence? [closed]

Good day everyone, I have the following sentence: Receive qualified developers, screen by more experienced developers. I want to ensure that the meaning is well understood. This sentence is ...
1
vote
2answers
49 views

How to say that “not watching a movie continuously”?

I feel awkward when I am trying to express this. Sometimes when we watch a movie on a computer, we don't watch it from the beginning to the end. In this case, is there a verb or phrase that native ...
5
votes
4answers
114 views

Idiom for expressing feeling of not willing to talk to a person who always replies in a disrespectful manner?

Is there an idiom for expressing the feeling of not willing to talk to a person who always replies in disdain or have such attitude or replies back in a disrespectful manner?
0
votes
5answers
200 views

A word for stripping someone of something hard-earned [closed]

It is like taking away the fame, wealth or influence of a celebrity. The police ____ Alan Turing. Alan Turing was unfortunately ____.
1
vote
7answers
63 views

Simple phrasing of “free and without restriction”

I'm making a deck-building card game that has a player acquire cards. These cards have costs and requirements for acquiring them, so if the player does not meet the card's requirements or does not ...
0
votes
2answers
176 views

A term for thinking that something will happen in the future because it hasn't happened yet

It can be called a false belief I guess. An example situation would be rolling a die five times and getting every number except six and then believing that the next one will be a six. But in reality ...
5
votes
2answers
67 views

Idioms to say If there is something needed to be done, then do it today?

My friend try to use idioms/parse to express that "If there is something has to be done, then let's do it right now, not postpone to other day." She was trying to use "One of these days is none of ...
0
votes
2answers
40 views

The term for when it is easy to remember things that happened at the start or beginning but not the middle

It is like remembering how we started a thing and finishing it but not those in the middle. An example is a trip taken long ago about which you only remember the start and end or things near to the ...
4
votes
4answers
101 views

A phrase that means “feigning being violated”

There was a recent phrase I can't remember for feigning being violated. I know the word perfidy is sometimes used, but that is not what I am looking for. I remember seeing something on the media and ...
1
vote
4answers
95 views

What do you call “Leave Work” for people regardless of location (in-office vs. from home)

I need to communicate the fact that a co-worker is no longer engaged on a task, normally communicated as below: [Customer], [Coworker] had to leave the office early today, so I'm taking over for ...
0
votes
0answers
46 views

Is there a word for weekend/weekday split?

I am trying to present a bunch of data using a number of time period splits. For instance, I can present the data by: Day of Week (Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, ...) Month (January, February, ...
0
votes
1answer
69 views

Which is more suitable/correct usage: “forget your password?” or “forgot your password?” [duplicate]

As a web developer, this is a question that has bugged me for some time: when providing a way for users to reset their password, which link wording is more suitable or is the "proper" use? "Forget ...
2
votes
1answer
26 views

A result that follows from and is consistent with a theory or logical system

Something that seems not likely to be true because it wasn't justified by deriving it from the axioms and theorems of a logical system is called ad hoc1 Then a statement that isn't ad hoc is ...
5
votes
6answers
105 views

Word or phrase for the act of defending someone who is generally despised

This is my first post in StackExchange. Please do tell if I made any mistakes. I'm looking for a phrase or word that fits this situation: A person (referred as X below) in a community, presumably ...
1
vote
1answer
27 views

Word or phrase that is used to deconstruct another word

I am looking for a word for phrase for when a word (usually a noun) is broken down into "simpler" words. It might also have derogatory undertones but that is not necessary. Example 1: Soccer is just ...
9
votes
8answers
878 views

Word/short phrase for “timespan has not yet started”

Is there a word or short phrase for telling that a timespan has not yet started? In this case, I want to apply it to licenses, which have a timespan within which they are valid. If the current time ...
3
votes
2answers
80 views

Word referring to all letters with the long ē sound [closed]

I read something a while back that defined all letters pronounced- and phonetically ending-with a long /ē/, i.e.: Bee Cee Dee Ee Gee Pee Tee Vee Zee I can no longer find the aforementioned ...
1
vote
1answer
56 views

What is the opposite of 'brand new'? [closed]

Is there a phrase that means "very old" but using another adverb instead of "very"? like "brand" in "brand new".
2
votes
1answer
36 views

Word or phrase for “incorrectly or underutilized tool or concept”

I am looking for a word or phrase to describe a situation where a tool or concept is being used incorrectly or underutilized. One example would be using a screwdriver as a hammer. Another example ...
44
votes
16answers
6k views

Is there an expression to indicate the strategy of wearing someone down with numerous small irritations?

I would use rope-a-dope, but it's got connotations of pretending to lose that I don't need. I'm trying to describe the behavior of someone who sends twenty detailed emails a day about various projects,...
2
votes
3answers
74 views

What's it called when someone does his work at client's home

People of some occupations usually do their work at the specifically equipped facilities. For example, you go to the barbershop to get a haircut or you go to the dentist, when you have a tooth pain. ...
1
vote
0answers
23 views

Application of this phrase [closed]

Where is this phrase generally used : "in arrears to" meaning indebted to . I am eager to know its usage . Is it just used in context with Banking or in common use also.please provide reference ...
5
votes
4answers
158 views

Is there an English equivalent of the Portuguese saying “Seven dogs to a bone”?

Is there an English equivalent of the Portuguese saying “Seven dogs to a single bone”? Sorry for not including the detailed meaning of the expression. “Seven dogs to a single bone” is the literal ...
27
votes
7answers
3k views

English equivalent to “a small fruit in an elephant's mouth”

In the Indian language of Malayalam, there's a saying "Aana vayil ambazhanga", which literally translates to: A small fruit in an elephant's mouth. It means: Having too small an amount for ...
1
vote
0answers
28 views

How to communicate two elements of different syntactic/semantic type in the same sentence?

I have the following sentence, NAME is a community that helps each other code better by rating each other's efforts and helps managers pair with other fellow developers I was suggested by the ...
1
vote
2answers
29 views

A word for pushing/pulling something long down like pulling a level (down)? [closed]

A silly example: A stick sticks up on an apple. I pull it down like pulling a lever, splitting the apple in half. What word or phrase should I use to describe that action?
1
vote
2answers
41 views

Bring someone back (down) to earth?

I thought that the idiom, "bring someone back/down to earth", meant taking someone off a pedestal, and seeing them for who they really are. For example: She needs to bring him down to earth and ...
1
vote
4answers
56 views

A phrase or word meaning “thin rationale”

I'm looking for a word or phrase to fill in the blank. I feel like the president of the university had a ________ for demoting Mr. X. The meaning I want to convey is "thin rationale". This might be ...
17
votes
6answers
3k views

What do you call this problem in the knee area of the jeans?

What do you call this problem when your pants, especially jeans, look like sticking out in the front and look as if there is a pillow on their knee part? (As if it has taken the shape of the knee.) I ...
1
vote
3answers
74 views

Word for non-community college [closed]

I am working on a persuasive paper about free college. I am trying to find the opposite of community college. Does anybody know a good word or phrase for this?
17
votes
18answers
4k views

Word for “not putting thought into something”

I'm writing a letter to someone and I want to describe the way a woman talked to me the whole night. Every time I told her something, I got short answers which had zero thought put into them. Like "...
2
votes
1answer
152 views

A word for the sentiment: “You're the most beautiful man/woman I've ever seen” (but in reality I've seen others)

It is common and flattering to tell a man/woman You're the most beautiful man/woman I've ever seen. The thing is, this is never true. It's just like calling someone a "best friend". In most ...
2
votes
1answer
59 views

Generic term to describe how the lack of a normal limiting factor will allow an undesirable overuse of another resource

I'm looking for a word or phrase to describe the natural forces or factors that would normally either encourage or discourage a particular course of action if that factor is either present or not ...
5
votes
1answer
53 views

Is there a verb or phrase for “good-morninging” someone?

The situation I'm asking about is to use a great amount of fake politeness to get rid of someone, as in the following example from J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit: “Sorry! I don’t want any adventures, ...
14
votes
19answers
3k views

Chasing something that doesn't exist

I'm trying to find a word or short phrase that would describe chasing something that doesn't exist. My restriction is that it can't be referencing something that would only make sense in our world (...
1
vote
3answers
139 views

What do you call someone who is easily influenced?

I am looking for a term with bad connotation. I am aware of the popular terms like "he/she has no personality", pliable, malleable, weak-minded but i couldn't find any more on the insulting side. It ...
1
vote
3answers
67 views

Is there an English idiom that is equivalent to “ calls seem to be getting ever more louder”? [closed]

Are there any phrases that I can use instead of this? context: In this case it is to show something whose importance is increasing and therefore the number of people supporting this particular thing/...
0
votes
3answers
42 views

Phrase similar to “in the offing”

The meaning of "in the offing" I guess is "something that is likely to happen in the (distant) future" Is there any phrase that describes something that is likely to happen soon?
0
votes
2answers
56 views

Word or phrase that refers to whom I report to and who reports to me

I'm working on an application that allows a user to search through a directory of employees and display them within an org chart. One way to view an employee is within the context of their whole ...
13
votes
9answers
2k views

Words or phrases that describe a person who knows the answer to a problem but is not believed

I'm trying to find either a word or a phrase that describes a person who knows the answer to a problem or problems but is never believed. Or ignored. The nearest I can come up with is maybe the story ...
1
vote
2answers
84 views

If something with no specific time associated with it is called timeless, what would you call something with no specific place associated with it?

I would, quite simply, like to know what the word is for something that could happen in any place; similar to the word "timeless", though that refers to something that could happen during any time. I ...