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
votes
8answers
1k views

A 'polite' way to say that someone is fat [closed]

Can you help in finding an adjective or expression that you can use to tell a persons that they are fat or overweight in a as neutral as possible way. The overweight person in question is very ...
2
votes
1answer
170 views

Is there a term for an anniversary that falls on the same day of the week as its original date?

An anniversary refers to the yearly recurrence of a date of an event. However, being an incredibly sentimental person who also takes notice of all sorts of minor details, I find myself placing ...
3
votes
5answers
183 views

More than “partially”, less than “completely”

I am re-phrasing several sentences in a manuscript we are preparing for publication and I have come across a sentence I am not quite happy with. Without going into the details, the sentence is about ...
1
vote
5answers
131 views

Word for phenomenon where people listen mainly to sources confirming their points of view

I recall there is a word for the phenomenon that people listen mainly to sources confirming their point of view. For example, some people will listen to Fox News whereas others will watch ...
0
votes
2answers
151 views

What's another word for “house owner”? [closed]

Is there a neutral term that means "owner of the house"? By neutral I mean words that do not suggest superiority, e.g. "landlord", "land owner", etc. Note: "innkeeper" wouldn't work because it ...
6
votes
6answers
3k views

Short, Politically Correct word for Native Americans [closed]

No more than four syllables, more PC than Indians. EDIT: I arbitrarily chose four syllables because any more seemed like a mouthful. I like to be PC and not have to stumble over 6+ syllables.
0
votes
1answer
54 views

“We” meaning a group of people that I am not talking to and myself [duplicate]

Is there a word or phrase to express the idea of a group of people and the speaker, collectively, where the group of people is explicitly not the people who are being spoken to? For example, consider ...
1
vote
6answers
173 views

Phrase to means “something a hipster would like”

I've been trying to come up with a phrase that means "something a hipster would like" in the modern context. Cool and hip seem kind of dated, so what would be a good recommendation for a more modern ...
0
votes
1answer
28 views

This Company is the Driving Force of / Behind our success [closed]

Which will be the correct form? Driving force behind our company OR Driving force of our company Thanks.
2
votes
2answers
88 views

Is there a term or adjective to describe this plot device?

Imagine you are watching or reading a work in which a certain amount of suspension of disbelief is required (such a work is typically science fiction or fantasy). And then, out of nowhere, comes this ...
4
votes
3answers
892 views

Term to describe “revenge through sexual intercourse”?

What term can be used to describe someone who, to take revenge on or extract payback for (perceived) past wrongs done them by their (unfaithful) romantic partner, goes off and has casual sex with ...
1
vote
1answer
70 views

What is the most pejorative phrase we can come up with for soccer foul fakers? [closed]

You know the ones: association football player flailing on the ground in world-class screaming agony; yet the TV replay shows he was not even touched – and it's an Oscar performance bid. 60 seconds ...
10
votes
9answers
839 views

English equivalent for this German term “Salzamt”?

In Austria, we sometimes jokingly say: Beschwerden ans Salzamt! Complaints to the Bureau of Salt meaning that it is not possible to appeal a decision, or that it is simply useless to ...
5
votes
10answers
737 views

A phrase for “to get heavily involved in something”

I'm looking for a phrase or an idiom meaning "to get heavily involved in something" or "to become passionate about something" where "something" could be a hobby, lifestyle, a music genre etc. One ...
7
votes
7answers
461 views

How to say succinctly: “An opinion which is *shareable* and agreed upon by many”?

How would you express the notion: overall many would share that opinion, more succinctly? For example: It is generally agreed upon that "Breakfast is the most important meal of the day". ...
2
votes
4answers
255 views

Short phrase for something that is recognised but not identified?

I've had a long discussion with people on the differences between recognizing a face in a crowd (I know I've seen that person before) and identifying the person you see (That's the waitress from the ...
0
votes
4answers
73 views

I need another phrase to replace “to be a part of helping the program grow.” [closed]

I have great passion and love for the Music Program and would love to continue to be a part of helping the program grow.
5
votes
4answers
460 views

What's a word for doing something eagerly despite the pain? Especially in the context of eating something hot or spicy

I'm looking for two words: Specifically, is there a word to describe the activity of eating or being compelled to eat something despite its hot temperature or spiciness? The second word I'm looking ...
4
votes
9answers
1k views

A more effective way to say, “Sorry, I was wrong” [closed]

I need an expression for the following context: I had been insisting on an issue, (believing in good faith that I was right) but later realized I was just totally wrong. What is the most effective ...
25
votes
10answers
5k views

An idiom for a stupid action which is beneficial in the end, or for the person who performed said action

My friend works for an investment firm, and his colleague mistakenly double-submitted a long bid for stock on a very risky day. The entire firm was on edge the whole day, watching the stock price. In ...
0
votes
4answers
56 views

Synonym for “scheduled” or “queued”

I'm looking for a word or phrase to describe a support ticket status that says "we are aware of this issue, and will look into as soon as we can", as opposed to "we are looking into this right now". ...
29
votes
14answers
4k views

Is there a verb for remaining silent?

Dutch has the verb zwijgen, which means remaining silent. Ik zwijg means I remain silent or I say nothing. It is also often used as an imperative, similar to shut up. I have been discussing this ...
17
votes
13answers
3k views

What metaphor or phrase can describe an object that is aesthetically pleasing yet totally useless?

Is there a conventional metaphor or phrase that just hits this meaning:good-looking yet useless?
-1
votes
1answer
58 views

Is there a word for the transfer of contact information (say giving a business card)

Is there a single word or phrase that can be used to describe: The transfer of contact data (ex: name, phone number, address, etc) (Optional) The connecting with somebody (in my sense on social ...
0
votes
1answer
148 views

Hurt someone and say “sorry” - Is there a word to describe this type of behaviour and/or people? [closed]

People unintentionally hurt others whilst in the middle of an argument, it could happen anywhere: in public or even in the privacy of one's bedroom. When they finally realize their mistake, they end ...
1
vote
8answers
379 views

What do you call the noise(s) that block you from hearing?

I am looking for a particular word to describe absurd noises which block your hearing. Not so long ago, I was talking to a friend of mine in a public place and we were unable to hear each other well, ...
16
votes
2answers
838 views

Term for Only “Unbelieved Warner”

I'm looking for a word, phrase, or idiom to describe a person or fictional device. In stories, especially horror and fantasy, there can be a character who is dismissed when they try to tell others ...
1
vote
3answers
64 views

Appropriate word for “intermediate approach”

In a paper, I need to mention something meaning "intermediate approaches" and looking for a suitable word or phrase for that. For example: Approach 1 is ... Approach 2 is ... (Approaches 1 and 2 ...
4
votes
7answers
747 views

person who's too eager to ascribe malicious intent

What's the word (formal or slang) or expression to describe a person who customarily and too easily ascribes bad motives to other people's behavior that could also be explained differently? E.g. I ...
2
votes
2answers
90 views

“X is inequitable because Y is disproportionate to Z.” Is there a better way to put this?

While a full Major League Baseball season is 162 games, the first round of the playoffs is only a 5 game series. I feel that this system is inequitable because the length of the opening playoff ...
2
votes
2answers
81 views

What do you call a subordinate clause that follows its main clause but is wrongly punctuated as a separate sentence?

“This compelled the chancellor to shut down the whole program. Which was an outcome no one really wanted.” I suspect that what underlies this error is the sense that in spoken English a substantial ...
7
votes
17answers
924 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 ...
2
votes
3answers
132 views

What to call someone who gives as much as he demands? [closed]

What to call someone who (can) give (in return) as much as he demands? Speaking in terms of life and personality. For example, I ask my future partner to be tidy, glamorous, rich, caring, pretty ...
10
votes
8answers
2k views

Shoot and intentionally miss

Suppose you are a guard at a prison, watching the surrounding scene from your observation tower. You have a gun and you are instructed to shoot any escapee you witness. One day, you indeed witness a ...
3
votes
3answers
101 views

What is the name for group of people who line up to create a corridor?

What is the proper name for group of people who line up in two lines to form some kind of a corridor for other people to pass between the two?
2
votes
4answers
186 views

Word for foreigner or person of another race mistaking you for someone?

When I am traveling Europe I often get mistaken for someone (maybe famous). I believe it has to do with the foreigner maybe not knowing the person's looks that well but I think it is more of not ...
6
votes
14answers
856 views

Succinct phrase that covers both “not started” and “previously started, later stopped”

I maintain a web page that tracks tasks for my team. There is a column currently called "not started" that we use for tasks we haven't started yet. We would also like to use that column for tasks we ...
0
votes
2answers
31 views

phrase request: describe authorship which overruns logical stopping points and/or fails to omit extraneous ideas

How can I describe authorship where the author often oversteps logical stopping points, or where the author introduces superfluous, tangentially related content? Here are some more details to ...
1
vote
3answers
46 views

“We choose our partners by…”

I want to say that we (as a company) choose only the best companies to join our partners program and I'm looking for a better way to say it. Something like: We choose our partners by _____. ...
1
vote
4answers
276 views

Expression for 'for the aforementioned/ stated reasons'

Can someone give me a less formal alternative to the phrase below? for the aforementioned/ stated reasons (we will satisfy your request).
2
votes
1answer
59 views

Expression for early 20th century industry magnate

I remember reading a very fitting, playful, 2-words expression for for early 20th century industry tycoon who teared their employees bad. Please help reminding me by listing synonyms.
1
vote
4answers
54 views

Let's not throw money at lawyers

Is there an idiom for telling my client to leave the lawyers to one side and sign a contract later on in the process -- something like "Let's not throw money at lawyers at this stage"? Thanks, ...
3
votes
4answers
116 views

Word or phrase for when someone opens their arms wide proposing a hug

What's the correct way to refer to the action of one opening their arms wide to offer a hug? I've been thinking about "hug request", "hug proposal" and "hug offer" but none of these seem quite ...
4
votes
2answers
77 views

How do historians reference the people alive in a given century?

I suspect historians have a more concise way of referencing [[the people alive in the 17th century]] than people alive in the 17th century. Do they call them 17th centurians, for example?
12
votes
14answers
2k views

More concise word or phrase for “people who have been taken advantage of”

I’m hoping for a single descriptive word for “people who have been taken advantage of”, but a shorter phrase would be ok. These are people who now have a lack of trust and are in need of loyalty in ...
3
votes
4answers
386 views

What's a noun for the group of people who you're very close to, such as family, friends, relatives, and significant others?

If I wanted to describe all of the people close to someone such as their close friends, family, relatives, and spouse/significant other, how would I do so with one noun? The simplest 'noun' that ...
3
votes
5answers
60 views

How to express “consistently beat one's own record” concisely

This is for a write-up in an academic document stating accomplishments. I am looking for a term that is a near-equivalent of beat one's own record, exceed expectations and set new records.
3
votes
5answers
143 views

Upstairs/downstairs neighbors

I just moved from the suburbs to my first apartment building a little less than six months ago, and I was wondering how I could could concisely refer to all the other residents of the building. I can, ...
1
vote
4answers
77 views

Is there a concise expression for 'as it exists today'?

Especially in the context of a situation that is anticipated to change in the near future. As in: An analysis of the subway system capacity, both as it exists today and after upcoming ...
2
votes
4answers
113 views

Best Word for “Loyalty to an Alma Mater”

What word or phrase best describes a sense of loyalty to and/or support of an educational institution from which one graduated? Used in a sentence: Alice received her PhD from Foo State ...