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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7answers
390 views
+50

A snappy and inoffensive alternative for “calm your tits”

I need a non-sexist, non-sexualized aternative instead of "Calm your tits." Clarification: The question comes from the parent of a pre-teen. The parent (me) needs some alternatives that will appeal ...
4
votes
4answers
453 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
4answers
109 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
3answers
51 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
27 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 ...
1
vote
3answers
283 views

Right Good but Left Bad

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. ...
-1
votes
0answers
57 views

How to fit metric units of distance into idioms [on hold]

I appreciate that the system of traditional English measurements was widely used before many English speaking countries switched to metric. So we have expressions like give an inch, walk a mile in ...
2
votes
7answers
151 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 ...
2
votes
2answers
44 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?
7
votes
4answers
650 views

Analogue of “most recent” for events in the future

In the context of a listing of events that are time-based, it is common to use "Most Recent" to describe a listing of events ordered by date, in descending order, with the upper limit being today's ...
4
votes
2answers
1k views

“Trust arrives walking and departs riding.”

That is the translation (provided by Wikiquote) of the Dutch proverb "Vertrouwen komt te voet en vertrekt te paard." I don't like this translation very much for conversational use. It doesn't "feel" ...
0
votes
0answers
20 views

Can i say “Advanced Default Interface”/“Advanced Classic Interface”? [on hold]

For people with native English, could you please help me. Can I say "Advanced Default/Classic Interface" in English, and if it's correct or acceptable? I'm building modifications to existing software ...
0
votes
2answers
68 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 ...
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 ...
2
votes
2answers
47 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 ...
1
vote
2answers
48 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 ...
7
votes
10answers
6k views

word that means: causing a paradigm shift, new era, revolution

I can't think of the word and it's driving me nuts. I'm looking for a word that can be used when some technology is discovered, way of thinking, or even event happening that causes a big change in ...
1
vote
2answers
37 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
52 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 ...
2
votes
7answers
82 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 ...
3
votes
4answers
264 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?
0
votes
2answers
36 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.
-1
votes
0answers
36 views

Common phrase for something that changes while you are working on it [duplicate]

What are common phrases that describe something that is changing while you are working on it without you knowing. for example: you are adding comments to a doc, and when you submit them you see that ...
1
vote
9answers
108 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. ...
0
votes
1answer
84 views

semantic difference for the forms: “x of y” vs. “x of the y” vs. “y x”

As a non-native speaker, I have a problem understanding the difference in meaning of the following forms: "… of …" "… of the …" "… …" To be more specific, let me give some instances: "theory of ...
1
vote
1answer
53 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
3answers
144 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 ...
1
vote
1answer
51 views

Is there a word or phrase for person who always experience déjà vu? [on hold]

My friend said that he loved getting déjà vu. Is there a word or phrase for this behavior or person?
0
votes
3answers
289 views

Need native expressions for “something happened but no one wants to undertake the responsibility”

Are there native expressions in oral and formal writing English about something happened - mostly negative incidents or events, but those, who should be responsible for it , don't want to undertake ...
1
vote
1answer
77 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 ...
12
votes
10answers
2k views

Is there an idiom that corresponds to the Hungarian expression “fall off the other side of the horse”?

There's a Hungarian phrase that can be literally translated as something like "fall off the other side of the horse". (The literal implication is either that instead of falling off this side of the ...
5
votes
5answers
114 views

complimenting “a” by demeaning “b”

I am wondering if there is an individual term or phrase that describes the occurrence of complimenting one thing by directly putting another thing down. An example could be if Abe says "I really ...
0
votes
6answers
96 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 ...
7
votes
5answers
1k views

When did “phone” become accepted as its own word?

In older print publications, I have come across telephone shortened to 'phone, with an apostrophe to mark where the beginning of the word had been omitted. Now, however, phone does not need an ...
0
votes
3answers
52 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
133 views

Is there a Latin phrase (which can be used in English) for “as per convention”?

I want to say something in an academic setting to the effect of "as expected" or "as per convention", when dealing with repeated lists of things with expected formatting. Is there a Latin phrase that ...
0
votes
2answers
72 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 ...
0
votes
0answers
56 views

What is the answer to what do you do at home? [closed]

This has nothing to do with a job interview I don't know what I do at home: I walk around, read about stuff, eat, sleep, go to the washroom. Also I'm working on a few projects, but I don't think that ...
1
vote
2answers
98 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. ...
0
votes
1answer
53 views

What type of marker is [sic] in a text? It is not an editor's mark, so what is it?

The marker "[sic]" is used in a published work to show that a word-usage or spelling is recognised by the author to be incorrect or unconventional. On the other hand, editors' marks (proofreading ...
1
vote
7answers
1k views

Is there a familiar phrase for spending too much time on something?

We all know that "a stitch in time saves nine" and "an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure", but sometimes the opposite is true. A stitch before its time is a waste of time and thread. If ...
2
votes
4answers
236 views

A poetic word or expression for networking/lobbying/making professional connections

I’m looking for a poetic word or expression that means making professional connections, lobbying, networking, socializing professionally. League, circuit, club, society, and so on and so forth.
1
vote
5answers
80 views

Word/Phrase if you assume someone guilty for not denying an irrelevant claim

Is there a word/phrase for Person A in a conversation like this: Person A: "Are you from this country?" Person B: "Why does that matter?" Person A: "So, that is a no..." Person A asks an ...
1
vote
1answer
36 views

term for “location where transaction occurred”

from an accounting standpoint is there a single word or two word phrase to describe a transaction location or context? Example: a transaction occurred in the amount (a) in the main office (o) for a ...
3
votes
6answers
173 views

the feeling left in one's psyche by another person's gestalt

The meaning of the term I'm looking for is something to the effect of: the feeling that one person's gestalt leaves in another person's psyche Or, to say the same thing in a clearer (thanks to ...
2
votes
3answers
133 views

What is the feminine version of ‘macho’ or ‘machismo’?

A single word is preferable, but a phrase will suffice. I found this reference at dictionary.com. It suggests 'swagger' but I can't relate this to the Latin for 'feminine'. I am hesistant in ...
2
votes
3answers
54 views

What is placing name with something called?

Recently, I'm watching the Chinese port version of The Voice (not sure if I can call it that since they differ greatly at least in my opinion), 中國好聲音 (The Voice of China). Every time the name of the ...
0
votes
4answers
104 views

Is there a verb for whacking your head?

What's a noun/verb for whacking yourself on the head? I vaguely recall having seen a word for this somewhere but I'm not that sure. The closest phrase I can think of is self harm or self mutilation, ...
4
votes
4answers
18k views

Another way to say “fulfill your dream”

What's another phrase or metaphor that means "to fulfill your dream" or "make your dreams a reality?"
9
votes
3answers
8k views

Word or phrase for literally and figuratively?

Say, for example, you and a group of people were all sailing out in the ocean and something happens...then you say, "I guess we are all in the same boat" You are literally in the same boat with ...