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Feb
24
awarded  Yearling
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24
awarded  Yearling
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6
awarded  Nice Answer
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3
answered Decent way to say “I would have gone to say XXX if you didn't mention YYY'”
Mar
2
comment Does this sentence seem weird?
Regarding context: I don't have my copy of the book immediately at hand, but I believe this is one of the earliest (if not the first) sentences in the book, shortly after the boys' plane crashed into the jungle. The author is describing the burning scar left by the aircraft.
Mar
2
comment What's the meaning of the phrase “take a stand on”?
Commitment is a big part of it, but there is a nuance. I would say it is possible for someone to commit to something privately without taking a stand. To "take a stand on" something usually entails a public commitment. It also entails a firm commitment (as you suggested), meaning that the person will effectively maintain or defend his position in an argument over the issue at hand.
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28
awarded  Enlightened
Feb
26
comment Origin of “he's 6 feet tall if he's an inch”
It's an interesting idiom, though. It certainly can be entertaining, but it also has this emphatic feel to it. It turns a statement into an argument; no longer are we simply expressing opinions about something, we're now forced to deal with this argument: if he's an inch tall, then he's six feet tall. If I say, "no, he's five feet tall," then I'm also saying he's not even an inch tall. It's a silly argument, of course, but I wonder if that argumentative quality is what lends it that feeling of emphasis.
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26
awarded  Supporter
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25
awarded  Nice Answer
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awarded  Editor
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24
awarded  Teacher