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84

bedridden (ˈbɛdˌrɪd n) TFD adj. confined to bed from illness. Try this one on for size. I am currently bedridden and can't help you with your homework.


62

As one commenter noted: high-risk, maybe combined with high-reward Therefore, I am surprised that no one has mentioned "high-stakes". From e.g. here: a situation that has a lot of risk and in which someone is likely to either get or lose an advantage


32

Generally the expression 'high risk, high reward' is used to express the concept, especially in financial business. Risk capital refers to funds used for high-risk, high-reward investments such as junior mining or emerging biotechnology stocks. Such capital can either earn spectacular returns over a period of time, or may dwindle to a fraction of the ...


28

I would say this person is "burning the midnight oil". This shows that they are working hard, because we think of machines as things that burn oil. It also relates to the "late at night" requirement for obvious reasons.


22

The term you are looking for in gamer parlance is "Key Item". Key items are special items that players can only obtain once, and either aid the progression of the storyline or allow access to new areas. - Bulbapedia The reference is specific to the Pokemon franchise, but the term is valid in any video game. Another accepted term is "Quest Item", ...


20

Someone who lives a life as you described can be said to "burn the candle at both ends" in that they exhaust their resources twice as fast, as you can imagine lighting both ends of a candle simultaneously would do. There are several good answers and links related exactly to this phrase in this ELU question: What does "burning the candle at both ...


18

There is an actual word that literally means "to study with a lamplight" but in usage means "to study very hard", which is elucubrate (elucubration, elucubrator, etc.). Not a very popular one mind you, but it's in the OED.


17

I think average people come close to your definition: (from TFD) Usual or ordinary in kind or character: a poll of average people; Idiomatic expressions for: average people: (AmE) The terms average Joe, ordinary Joe, Joe Sixpack (for males) and ordinary, average, or plain Jane (for females), are used primarily in North America to ...


16

I'm a bit late to the game here, but I would suggest make-or-break to describe a big risk with, potentially, a big reward. From Merriam-Webster Make-or-break - resulting in either definite success or definite failure For example, "This latest money-making venture is make-or-break for me."


16

'Laid up' is possible. "I can't come in to work this morning. I am laid up with a bout of malaria".


16

This kind of user is called an ask-and-run. It is even mentioned on Meta Stack Overflow: Dealing with “ask-and-run” questioners Bonus: If we follow the same pattern, we can also come up with a specific term ask-and-idle for users who post a question but stay idle (but don't disappear/leave) without accepting an answer, commenting, replying to people, ...


15

You might refer to it as a MacGuffin: a MacGuffin (sometimes McGuffin or maguffin) is a plot device in the form of some goal, desired object, or other motivator that the protagonist pursues, often with little or no narrative explanation. The specific nature of a MacGuffin is typically unimportant to the overall plot. (source: wikipedia)


13

How about stereotypical? That connotes someone who acts exactly the way one would expect someone from his culture to act. Boring.


13

Redolent would be useful in this case. Its origins are in a word simply meaning to give an odor, and it now is used most commonly to describe an evocative smell, and often one that triggers nostalgia. Modern usage requires it to be attributed to something, either an item the smell reminds you of ("redolent of ripe cherries") or more figuratively of a ...


12

I suggest nominal: (from TFD) existing in name only. The position is a serious one, not just nominal. she is the nominal head of our college, the real work is done by her deputy. (from Cambridge Dict,)


12

convalescing: to recover health and strength after illness; make progress toward recovery of health. e.g., He was due to spend the next eight weeks convalescing I am currently convalescing and can't help you with your homework. Source: Dictionary.com Subjective interpretation If I were to hear that someone was bedridden; yes I would understand ...


12

As a native speaker, I might use bedridden for a period longer than several days, but the term is not often used in casual conversation. I would use "sick in bed" if it's just a few days, e.g: I am currently sick in bed and can't help you with your homework. "Laid up" isn't used very much where I live (New England). It's probably more common in other ...


12

Probably a showdown: An event, especially a confrontation, that forces an issue to a conclusion. or a clash: An encounter between hostile forces; a battle or skirmish. (from TFD)


11

You're looking for "the man in the street" - an ordinary person, average citizen, a hypothetical average man. "it will be interesting to hear what the man in the street has to say about these latest tax cuts" http://www.oxforddictionaries.com/us/definition/american_english/man "Politicians rarely care what the man in the street thinks." ...


10

In gaming, it is called a quest item (also known as a plot item or a key item). The term is usually used in MMO games. Skyrim Quest items are items that are, in one way or another, related to a quest. As a rule, quest items cannot be removed from the inventory through any means(see bugs), save for those involved in the quest. WOW Quest items ...


10

The first word that springs to my mind is anticlimactic, though lame seems to be a popular phrase. I wouldn't say your 'cop-out ending' is idiomatic, but it is definitely descriptive. I am impressed that you got through eight seasons of Dexter. I enjoyed the first two, but the third started to get diluted and predictable and I dropped off so you might want ...


10

Two terms I think applicable have been mentioned already: • face-off, “to be in or come into opposition or competition” [merriam-webster.com] as a verb, or as a noun, the competition itself • showdown, “The final battle between two nemeses, in which there can be but one victor” [wiktionary] Also consider the following. • dogfight, “a fierce fight or ...


9

The word "rumble" specifically refers to a confrontation between two rival gangs. It could be a spontaneous event, or it could be planned in advance. The goal of the fight was to settle a dispute, demonstrate the gangs' fighting skills, or establish territories. Gang rumbles were often planned in advance by leaders, sometimes even negotiating times and ...


8

A sick person who is lying in bed is a bedridden fibber.


8

You might be looking for directly related or lineally descended or some variation thereof (lineage, for example). direct adj. definition 2b: being or passing in a straight line of descent from parent to offspring : lineal <direct ancestor> lineal adj. having a direct family relationship : related by a direct series of parents and ...


8

It's a Plot Coupon A thing that a character needs to obtain in order to cash it in later for a Plot resolution. For example, let's say that our intrepid hero must steal a key, then find the Treasure Chest of Galumphry that the key will open, then remove the Orb of Power from the chest and use it to banish the Big Bad. The key, the chest, and ...


8

A bad patch. I've heard rough patch, too, but more commonly bad patch or rough time. I suppose sticky patch is chiefly British. http://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/british/go-through-a-bad-difficult-rough-sticky-patch


8

Trial and tribulation. Ordeal. i.e.: A period of trial and tribulation. http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/trials+and+tribulations


7

A chess-player would refer to it as a gambit. From Merriam-Webster: Main Entry: gam·bit Pronunciation: \ˈgam-bət\ Function: noun Etymology: Italian gambetto, literally, act of tripping someone, from gamba leg, from Late Latin gamba, camba, from Greek kampē bend; probably akin to Gothic hamfs maimed, Lithuanian kampas corner Date: ...



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