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May
21
comment Why do people say “over-” and “underwhelmed” but never just “whelmed”?
She was underwhelmed, if that's a word / I know it's not 'cause I looked it up / That's one of those skills / That I learned in my school
May
21
comment Expression from “Lord of the Flies” that I cannot understand
FYI the scar is referring to the crash site: the boys crashed in an airplane. It's a "scar" because it is the violent destruction of the pristine jungle. The violent imagery foreshadows events to come.
May
21
comment Expression from “Lord of the Flies” that I cannot understand
@JoeBlow The scar was "all around" him. The scar was also a bath of heat. He could have written "it was bathed in heat" but then he would give external agency (the sun) to the heat. The metal wreckage, the broken glass, would all radiate heat. The sentence is evocative and jarring because of its construction. It's not a straightforward syntax, nor should it be, in my opinion.
May
21
comment Expression from “Lord of the Flies” that I cannot understand
@Robusto Yes, I wasn't confident enough to mark it so. Agree with the decision. :)
May
20
comment Expression from “Lord of the Flies” that I cannot understand
I disagree that it's objectively badly-written. See english.stackexchange.com/questions/14709/…
May
20
comment Expression from “Lord of the Flies” that I cannot understand
VERY related: english.stackexchange.com/questions/14709/…
May
12
comment “Thank you very much” vs. “Thank you so much”
Data just doesn't support the idea that "thank you so much" is gaining in popularity compared to "thank you very much". I think you have developed a bias against the use of the intensifier "so", and therefore you are more likely to note and remember when you hear the phrase "thank you so much."
May
9
comment Is there a word to describe curiosity in a positive way?
My point, clumsily made as it was, is that you can be attentive to something without being curious about it at all. The words don't describe the same state of mind. I agree that curious and inquisitive are close synonyms. I disagree that "inquisitive" is in general, more negative. Having an "inquisitive mind" rarely has a negative connotation.
May
9
comment Is there a word to describe curiosity in a positive way?
I don't see the connection between attentive and curious at all. One can be attentive and curious (inquisitive), inattentive (scatterbrained) and curious, incurious and attentive (perfunctory), or incurious and inattentive (apathetic).
May
7
comment Single word to describe “make something worse”
Both are very fine options. However, if it were me I would simply write "hitting the machine with a hammer made the problem worse."
May
2
comment A perfect (honest) pangram that is understandable for a regular native user?
In english, æ and œ ligatures aren't letters, although they are letters in some Scandinavian languages. In the past they were used in Latin and Greek words to mark an etymological connection, but in modern English they are rarely used. According to wikipedia the three letters you mentioned are part of the Polish alphabet.
Apr
14
comment Is there a single word that is the opposite of “want” (i.e. “do not want”)?
@JasonC That's an interesting point! But do opposite words have to be exclusive? I have a love/hate relationship with lots of things. :)
Mar
23
comment What does “I know, right?” mean?
I think you're dead wrong with this interpretation. In my experience, the intention of the phrase isn't to shut down conversation like that, but to show empathy with the speaker.
Mar
13
comment How to describe Homer Simpson's 'idunno' sound
I agree. It's essentially three different tones of an 'm' sound.
Mar
13
comment “Semantic”s relation to “Pedantic”
@AJMansfield "Pedantry" isn't alternative, it's correct.
Mar
13
comment A word or succinct phrase for “capable of producing financial income”
Has it come to this? Business requirements for a game must include the proviso that the project must actually make money? Profitable is the correct word. Don't overcomplicate things.
Mar
5
comment Is there a secular, non vulgar alternative to “for heaven's sake”?
@terdon I suppose I made the assumption since all the references I found listed the Peter/pity variants together.
Mar
5
comment Is there a secular, non vulgar alternative to “for heaven's sake”?
@terdon "Pity" is a substitute for "Peter". Apparently for the truly righteous, even invoking the name of Peter was seen as too blasphemous. :)
Mar
5
comment Is there a secular, non vulgar alternative to “for heaven's sake”?
On that point, I agree.
Mar
5
comment Is there a secular, non vulgar alternative to “for heaven's sake”?
Certainly not everyone who uses "for Pete's sake" associates it with St. Peter. But that doesn't change the origin of the phrase. The same goes with "pity": it's a minced oath. Many phrases with religious origins enter the vernacular and lose the original context.