Questions tagged [explanation]

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83
votes
2answers
95k views

Two crows being an attempted murder

What is the point of this joke? — "What do you call two crows on a branch?" — "Attempted murder." I've googled it to check if it was a word play but the closest one I've hit was "marauder". ...
48
votes
11answers
14k views

What does “Wine! Because you never got a pony” mean?

The term Wine! Because you never got a pony appeared in a meme on my social media. My first reaction was to question if there was a spelling mistake, i.e. Whine! Because you never got a pony would ...
18
votes
5answers
15k views

Why are there two “to”s in “from … to … to …”?

To denote that something applies to a wide range of items you can use the phrase "from ... to ... to ...", e.g. Animals can live anywhere, from forests to deserts to deepest pits of the oceans. ...
7
votes
4answers
460 views

What's wrong with 'Bananas are unable to grow in cold countries'? [duplicate]

I have an English exam coming up where I will be pointing out the mistakes in sentences and explain them. One of the example questions we got was 'Bananas are unable to grow in cold countries'. ...
7
votes
2answers
156k views

What does “Thanks for having me” mean?

It seems to be used like "Thanks for inviting me". But it sounds like "Thank me, cause I was there". Looking for a better explanation and situations it should be used in.
6
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3answers
2k views

What is a “Knee-jerk contradiction”? [closed]

In the discourse-guidelines there are multiple bullet points of what to avoid to improve conversation. One of these points is Knee-jerk contradiction. Now I know what a knee-jerk is and I know that (...
4
votes
1answer
180 views

Please help me to understand the following definition of “Precautionary Principle”

for "precautionary princple", it gives the following definition. where there are threats or serious or irreversible damage, lack of full scientific cerntainty shall not be used as a reason for ...
3
votes
1answer
18k views

Is there any difference between ”control of/over“ and ”power over"

For example, what to choose here? "To compete for the control of/over a corporation" or "To compete for the power over a corporation" UPDATE If two workers compete for absolute control/power, what ...
3
votes
2answers
13k views

“My bad” versus “My mistake”

What is the difference between the expressions "my bad", which I believe is informal, and "my mistake"? Is register the only difference between these two expressions? I had never thought about it, ...
3
votes
2answers
1k views

What is difference between timetable and schedule?

I'm building an application, that shows schedule/timetable for university students. I'm confusing, what is the correct word for it: schedule or timetable? How should I name it? Here is the result of ...
3
votes
2answers
1k views

What exactly does it mean for one to “…bleed on the page…”?

This question is spurred by some quotes I found connected to George Lucas and the creation/writing of Star Wars that I used in this answer on the “Movies & TV” Stack Exchange site. Specifically ...
2
votes
1answer
489 views

“Everything you want (to do)” vs “All you want (to do)”

On a language-exchange app I use, a non-native speaker said (emphasis mine): When you are absolutely sick and tired of exams and everything you want is to listen to music One person corrected ...
2
votes
0answers
148 views

What type of conditional is “If you're going to… you've got to…”?

In a cartoon (Peanuts) I saw the conditional : 'If you're going to get any joy out of being depressed, you've got to stand like this...'. Can you explain me why it is the ‘first conditional’?
2
votes
0answers
69 views

going home and going to work [duplicate]

The other day I've learned that you cannot use "to" in the sentence "I am going (to) home". At the same time, you should use "to" with other place names. For example, I am going to work. Could ...
1
vote
5answers
341 views

Word or phrase for the moment/reason/motive you reveal to someone why you had acted a certain way prior to parting ways

A massive cliche in action movies (especially James Bond), but is there actually a word for that moment when the evil villain reveals their deadly plot to the action hero before (usually attempting ...
1
vote
2answers
4k views

Why soothe a savage breast?

In William Congreve's The Mourning Bride (1697), the first line of the play, spoken by Almeria in Act I, Scene 1 is Music has charms to soothe a savage breast This is frequently (and ...
1
vote
1answer
30 views

“User interaction” in the context of the USK [closed]

I was looking at the USK recommendation for a game that my children want to have. The game is Roblox. It has the rating USK12 due to violence digital purchases user interaction I don't understand ...
1
vote
1answer
136 views

What does the author want to say in these lines?

"I suppose the sets and the studio lights needed the girls and boys to be made to look ugly in order to look presentable in the movie" (Please have a look at the image I have attached, which actually ...
1
vote
1answer
87 views

Can you explain the end of this long law sentence for me [closed]

This is the sentences. It's really long and complicated and I'm not native English speaker. The end is not clear for me and I don't understand the parts about foreign law and award and etc. Slade ...
1
vote
1answer
145 views

'white-sleeve badge? [closed]

Can somebody please explain this expression from a Mark Twain story: 'Sedgemoor trade-mark, white sleeve badge'? Here is the context: Among other things he said that my character was written in my ...
1
vote
1answer
3k views

What is the ‘art’ mentioned in: “Art is long, and time is fleeting”? [closed]

What does art refer to in the poem: A Psalm of Life by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow? Art is long and time is fleeting My book says Art refers to the “art of living” but this doesn't convince me and ...
1
vote
1answer
472 views

Is delayed appositive correct term for this?

I have heard a term called delayed appositive, which is an appositive that is delayed as shown below. The hunter was trying to fight the bear, a real brute of a man. Here, this a real brute of a ...
1
vote
2answers
558 views

Get to doing something

I've heard this construction a few times. What does it mean exactly, and is it grammatically correct? For example: "it underwent a number of changes until it got to being exactly what I wanted ...
1
vote
1answer
195 views

Usage/meaning of would in this very specific context (book)

Can anyone explain me the meaning of would (underlined) in this specific context? How would you rephrase this sentence? It's an excerpt from the book In the Teeth of The Evidence: And Other Mysteries ...
1
vote
1answer
2k views

Meaning of “There is no better time to be happy than now.”

Does it mean that the timing to be happy is rare, so that we should seize the day and be happy? Could anyone help clarify, please?
1
vote
2answers
107 views

Explanation of a phrase

I was reading the book The Power of Habit, and I came across this beautiful phrase : Water is most apt analogy of how habit works."Water hollows out for itself a channel, which grows broader and ...
1
vote
0answers
401 views

What exactly is a shoulder cord when speaking about military uniform? How to distinguish it from a lanyard, aiguillette and fourragere? [closed]

I think I know what the fourragere, aiguillete and lanyard are so you don't have to worry about explaining those but I just don't get the point about wearing the shoulder cord. I haven't found the ...
1
vote
1answer
2k views

What does 'meta' mean? [duplicate]

I referred to the urban dictionary and it says meta means something used to characterize something that is characteristically self-referential. But I'm still confused. Cause I don't see any ...
1
vote
0answers
128 views

Which one of the different meanings of the word “consensus” to choose

I'm struggling with a translation of a technical text describing the process of minimization of a logical function (computer science & tech. stuff) and I don't seem to compe up with any logical ...
0
votes
2answers
123 views

What does “Ship complete” mean to you?

I'm looking for a better way than "Ship Complete" to say "Do not ship products individually." "Ship Complete" is an option found in an order entry process. The order process goes as follows: A ...
0
votes
2answers
527 views

What does “Polite conversation is rarely either” mean?

What does the quote by Fran Lebowitz "Polite conversation is rarely either" mean? Does it mean "If it's polite it's likely not a conversation, if it's a conversation it's likely not polite?"
0
votes
4answers
402 views

Explanation of the word “Populism” [closed]

I found that the word "populist" means someone who represents the interests of ordinary people, so a "good" word. But I have also seen the term used as "he was accused of populism" so "bad". What ...
0
votes
1answer
1k views

What does the following line imply?

In the following excerpt from the short story Three questions by Leo Tolstoy is a line I have questions about: 'Do you not see,' replied the hermit. 'If you had not pitied my weakness yesterday, ...
0
votes
1answer
110 views

What does the word “Stone” mean in this context [closed]

A book by Salman Rushdie ("Shame"), Hindu–Islamic tensed relations are described. So there are several words starting/containing the word Stone Stonewasher Stone-gang Stone-godly 'The one-godly ...
0
votes
3answers
98 views

“… with little interference to absorption-with one exception.” What does this mean?

I have read this information in some blog: Can someone explain what the sentence "About 50% of the small intestine can be removed with little interference to absorption-with one exception" means?
0
votes
1answer
44 views

What is the meaning of the sentence [closed]

Taking in with a wave of his hand the rich, black earth spreading all the way to the horizon, he exclaimed: “My God, what couldn’t we do with such wonderful land.” Then he added as an afterthought: “...
0
votes
1answer
2k views

Double negation: not, neither - nor in a sentence

Can you please explain why these sentence are correct: He hadn’t done any homework, neither had he brought any of his books to class. We didn’t get to see the castle, nor did we see the ...
0
votes
1answer
156 views

The meaning of “diversify” [closed]

I have this sentence: Many wheat farmers have begun to diversify into other forms of agriculture. And I struggle to understand the meaning of "diversify" here. Does this sentence mean that they ...
0
votes
1answer
232 views

The Richest Man in Babylon Explanation

I am reading "The Richest Man in Babylon" but could not get the meaning of the following sentences: Provide also that thy family may not want should the Gods call thee to their realms. For such ...
0
votes
1answer
150 views

Hello, I am confused with days calculation, can someone clarify this for me? [closed]

for example If you had shower on Monday(2.1.2017 18:00), then you had no shower on Tuesday (3.1.2017 18:00) and then had shower again on Wednesday (4.1.2017 18:00) And it is still 4.1.2017 on-going ...
0
votes
1answer
754 views

The meaning of the 'enclosure' word

I can't understand the meaning of the word 'enclosure' in the context: "This client reads one or more RSS feeds, queues up the enclosures for download, and processes several downloads in parallel ...
0
votes
1answer
5k views

What is correct “slowness” or “slowliness”? [closed]

I wrote email today and when I used word "slowliness" it got underlined by spell checker. I googled for slowliness vs slowness but couldn't find good answers. Which one is correct? "slowness" or "...
0
votes
1answer
415 views

Can a participle phrase modify a clause?

It is generally taught that participial/participle phrases function as adjectives modifying a noun (or pronoun). In a sentence such as: A major accident occurred on our bus's route to school, ...
0
votes
1answer
577 views

What is the objection of Siddhartha here? [closed]

I am reading Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse and I am not able to understand this passage But according to your very own teachings, this unity and necessary sequence of all things is nevertheless ...
0
votes
0answers
13 views

“I would argue” - what does it mean in following context? [migrated]

In the following paragraph, i don't get the meaning of the last part "I would argue, should you always feel you must." Any possible explanation will be appreciated. The truth is that the human ...
0
votes
0answers
49 views

Analysis of the Phrase "if you have questions, then I'll be available after class [duplicate]

I am looking for an analysis or explanation of the phrase "if you have questions, then I'll be available after class." Although this is structured like a conditional, it's not actually a semantically ...
0
votes
1answer
411 views

Need help in understanding the question

I have a problem in understanding the sentence Alpha indicates the IoU (Intersection over Union) for neighbouring candidate boxes; step sizes of the sliding windows are determined such that one ...
0
votes
1answer
2k views

What is the meaning, form and pronunciation for the items listed in bold? [closed]

Tide laundry detergent is meant to be used for household cleaning purposes, but thieves are turning it into something dirty. Authorities are reporting a spike in thefts of Tide, and in some cities ...
-1
votes
1answer
60 views

What does “To avoid IP issues” mean? [closed]

I'm following a discussion on a public forum and, one of the users replied the following: Hmmm....I honestly never dealt with large arrays like that. Can you post a screen grab of what you ...
-1
votes
1answer
70 views

The meaning of “stalking dirt-floor stalls”

So much has been written about that night in the years since that fact and myth have become intertwined. Regular power-outs, a guest list of Beatles and Blow-Ups, acid casualties stalking dirt-...