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I've noticed this expression in the past 2 years or so. Most recently, a coworker talking about when a corporate IT system will be up and running - "when it's a thing." I agree that "to be a thing" is being used as a verb phrase meaning "to exist." I guess that if it isn't a person or a place, it must be a thing, even if it's an abstract concept.


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"to keep doing" is just the shortened form of the older "to keep on doing". There is no difference in meaning. Very often we have the phenomenon that prepositions are dropped in verb constructions. I would guess that the shortened form "to keep doing" is used more frequently today than the longer version. I think it is a general rule that when speakers have ...


0

OED meaning 40(b) of the verb to keep has examples from 1800: a. To continue, persevere, go on (in a specified course or action). b. With pres. pple. as compl. Examples: 1800 W. Gifford Baviad (ed. 6) 27 (note) Some contemptible vulgarity, such as ‘That's your sort!’..‘What's to pay?’ ‘Keep moving’, &c. ...


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Consider, fair up fair up/fair off: Chiefly Southern U.S. (meteorology) To clear: They said it was going to fair off later on, but it didn't. YourDictionary South Midland and Southern U.S. (of the weather) To clear: It's supposed to fair off toward evening. Random House Southern fair off and fair up, meaning "to become clear," were ...


1

Brighten up To become happier; improve one's mood or outlook. "Don't worry, things will brighten up." Here's a quote from The Dark Knight The night is darkest just before the dawn. And I promise you, the dawn is coming. It means the same as things will clear up soon. See definition here.


2

to candy over would be the same thing as to sugarcoat. Often writers will try to avoid cliches. For me, this is an example of that. If you sugarcoat something, you spread sugar over it. A sugarcoated pill. As a verb: to sugarcoat the problem (pretend it isn't one, for example). to candy over [human nature] to candy over [a problem]. to sugarcoat [human ...


6

To candy can be used as a verb, or at least an adjectival verb: candied fruit, meaning fruit preserved in syrup and then dried. Woolf here is liberally adapting that usage to the abstract concept of human nature. Her view is that human nature is detestable unless it is made more palatable (candied over) by the ennobling power of art.


1

They all sound weird and ungrammatical. I need a verb. How about wronged? You've wronged me. Similar to this is doing wrong: You've done him wrong.


1

Some phrasal verbs are quite literal, and relatively easily understood - look around, get up, sit down, for instance. Others are more metaphorical - put out, make up, look through, for instance. A helpful way of learning phrasal verbs is to link them to basic metaphors. In their book, Metaphors we Live By, George Lakoff and Mark Johnson essentially talk ...


1

It's 'kick off a discussion', which comes from the sport of football (or soccer, as it's called in the US), in which a ball is kicked around a field by two teams of 11 players. Kick off time is the time that a match starts; the first kick of the game. The Online Etymology Dictionary lists the figurative usage of this word as beginning in 1875. Also ...


1

In this sense, it's been used with "off", i.e. "kick off sth" , "kick off sth with". It can be used transitively or intransitively. Another meaning of the term is: " to remove your shoes by shaking your feet", as in: "She kicked off her shoes and danced barefoot."


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Although I don't agree about the facts, I think that what is being said concerns stress/intonation. There is a conflict between two principles of English stress. (1) The last element of a phrase has the highest stress. (2) The second of two coreferential noun phrases has low stress. Suppose we write a high stressed constituent in bold and the second of ...


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In this question a simple equation is made unnecessarily complex, as if, through back calculation. As an answer we would like to ask another question : why do we choose SEEM as main verb of all the four examples? Here lies the answer to this post. 'Seem' is a true linking verb like any form of 'be' verb and 'become'. They are exceptional in the sense that ...


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Mr. Nasrallah, Mr. Hubbard: I respect and applaud the both of you for your pursuit of knowledge and for your efforts to share the same with others...in the same spirit, I wish to expound upon Mr. Hubbard's reply, if I may? I've had several Arabic friends who benefited from formal English Language Instruction and printed media; yet, benefited immensely by ...


3

A person "of my own age" sounds more natural to me as a native American English speaker living in northern California.



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