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Jan
28
comment “Speak of the devil” neutral-sounding synonym for non-person scenario
"And, speaking of which..."
Jan
27
comment How would I address people who attend church with me?
A "fellow congregant?" "Someone you know from church?"
Jan
27
comment What do we mean by the phrase 'conventions of standard written English'
Answering this question is the purpose of this entire site.
Jan
27
comment Gender-neutral equivalent of “Man of the world”
Citizen of the world?
Jan
27
comment “All-American” … which usage came first?
I always read it as meaning "entirely American," in the sense of having no constituent elements sourced from outside America. But then, I'm a foreigner.
Dec
15
comment How widespread are snow goblins?
@MrHen It does describe the term being used in regions distant from the OP. It does, admittedly, also contain some irrelevant tangential information, but that's true of many answers on every SE site.
Dec
13
comment What's the large version of the word “cookie”?
Based on what I see in bakeries, the usual word for "large cookie" is just "cookie." In Australia, at least.
Dec
13
comment A is as good as if not better than B
'If' can be given that meaning, but in my experience "as good, if not better than" idiom is a fixed idiom that doesn't use that meaning.
Dec
7
comment How do you say “people, who unfortunately weren't fully exterminated” in English?
It doesn't just mean kill, it means kill 'em all. Still not what the OP wants.
Nov
8
comment Suitable saying for “different people like/dislike different things”?
"One man's meat is another man's poison."
Nov
5
comment Is “Sleeveless vest” redundant?
@LisaBeck It's a regional difference, usually. What regions are the dictionary definitions from?
Nov
5
comment Proper term for a “Swipe”
You mean a "thinly-veiled insult?"
Nov
4
comment What is meant by “make sacrifice of a corpse”?
@TimLymington Confusingly, the fictional god Tyr, in the Forgotten Realms fiction in which he appears, is the Norse god Tyr moonlighting in a different pantheon. Which is to say, within the fiction of the fictional one, the fictional one is the less-fictional one. Much like any fan fiction character, come to think of it.
Nov
4
comment What is meant by “make sacrifice of a corpse”?
Historical note that's a little relevant to the "other sacrificial rituals may not involve destruction of the offering" point: In the bible, "burnt" offerings were so called because the entire offering was consumed by flames; Most offerings weren't burnt, hence the need to specify.
Oct
30
comment Words ending in -ht, words ending in -th
@J.H.S. I wasn't putting forth a rule of thumb. I was seriously asking. If the OP was, for example, deaf, they'd need a rule that didn't depend on being able to sound things out. On the other hand, if they're learning English as a second language, we might be able to come up with something that makes sense in terms of their own native language. Knowing why they have difficulty makes it easier to write an answer that they'll find useful.
Oct
29
comment Words ending in -ht, words ending in -th
I'm not sure how exactly you're running into trouble remembering which words end with "th" and which end with "ht." Do these endings have identical pronunciation in your dialect? Or do you only write the language, and never speak or hear it? The usefulness of our answers may depend on this detail.
Oct
26
comment Do rules of grammar apply to unconventional language usage?
@Ricky Relativism serves a purpose, and this site depends on it as a way of sifting out the correct answers from the "idiocy," as you describe it. If someone says "The answer is X!" and then doesn't actually provide any evidence that X is the answer, then they might as well be talking out of their hat; We have no way to tell if their answer is correct or entirely imaginary. An answer that only might be correct is more time consuming and less useful than no answer at all, and so tends to accumulate downvotes.
Oct
25
comment Do rules of grammar apply to unconventional language usage?
@Ricky It's true that there's no accepted central authority that governs what is and is not acceptable English, but you make a lot of strong assertions in this answer, and the SE requires that any assertions that aren't self-evident be backed up with some kind of reference or sufficiently demonstrative example - Otherwise, the correctness of your answers will only be apparent to people who know the correct answers already, rather than to people who would actually benefit from some instruction.
Oct
21
comment what to call “something that we desire”?
On that note, a "desire" also works; If I were asked "what is your desire," I could answer "lunch" and be understood.
Oct
19
comment Where did the word 'golliwog' come from?
@rhetorician In Australia, I've heard that 'wog' was originally an acronym standing for 'Western Oriental Gentleman,' and was an offensive and disparaging term for Chinese immigrants. It gradually broadened in meaning until it could be applied to almost any foreigner. That might be a folksonomy, though. Still, in my experience 'wog' is only ever used to describe to people from other countries (and their descendants); There's a whole separate vocabulary of offensive and disparaging terms for native Australian non-whites.