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Questions tagged [idiom-requests]

This tag is for questions seeking an idiom that fits a meaning. If you're also seeking a phrase, see the "phrase-requests" tag too.

0
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0answers
29 views

Opposite idiom for tower over [on hold]

What's an opposite idiom for tower over? Context being standing under, shorter than a person.
0
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1answer
15 views

Expression/Idiom of talking on a wide range of topics

Is there an expression you could use to describe the contents you have in your mind when you can talk about a wide range of topics to people or you're a good talker? Or better words for topics/...
3
votes
3answers
62 views

Is there an idiom for when the source is “clean” but the product isn't?

I was thinking of having a sentence that goes like: This situation presents the paradox of ________. Basically, I want to say that it's ironic that the worst human rights abuses can be traced back ...
0
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0answers
24 views

I have two news for you one: one good, one bad [on hold]

So, the phrase: I have two news for you one: one good, one bad the problem here: news is uncountable, should I say two bits of news? Is there any kind of an idiom with a similar meaning?
4
votes
2answers
47 views

Is there a term for browsing the web and ending up very far from the original article? [closed]

Whenever I read an article on the web, I either click on the links in the article or search for more information about the topic, ending up very far from the original article. Is there a term for this ...
-1
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1answer
44 views

Is there a better way to say “infallable to oblivion”? [closed]

What is a good, high-style way to say a thing or a person is not fallable to oblivion? I considered the following variants which I found inadequate: Unforgettable - this basically means "impressing" ...
-4
votes
3answers
59 views

An expression, idiom, or phrase meaning “I lied” or “they are lying” or “to tell a lie”, etc? [closed]

Looking for an expression, idiom, or phrase that would indicate a lie is being told, or was told, etc. I will not be using this phrase as part of a sentence, so I can't give an example. I just ...
1
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0answers
20 views

Unspoken Obligation [closed]

The godfather protects your store with the usually unspoken expectation that you owe him some sort of payback, not necessarily money, more like loyalty. Is there a word for that kind of arrangement?
2
votes
5answers
96 views

English idiom for 'bad consequences stemming from too much ambition' [closed]

I'm looking for an idiom that is equivalent to the Portuguese: Quem tudo quer, tudo perde. Who wants everything, loses everything. It basically points out that being too ambitious will have ...
1
vote
4answers
45 views

Eye-related phrase or idiom for seeing too many good things

When one sees too many good/tempting things at the same time, it can be said that their eyes __________ ? Is there such an idiom in English? In Russian one says: глаза разбегаются (lit. eyes scatter)...
1
vote
3answers
77 views

Is there an idiom for the phrase 'that's not what I meant'? [closed]

I'm looking for an idiom for the phrase 'that's not what I meant' and Google seems to be of no help whatsoever.
1
vote
1answer
57 views

Is there a word or expression to describe when someone has learned a big word and is waiting for an opportunity to use it?

Is there a word or expression to describe when someone has learned a big word and is waiting for an opportunity to use it, in conversation, or otherwise?
6
votes
2answers
97 views

What’s a good English expression for the Chinese idiom “buying horse bones with much gold” (千金买马骨)?

"千金买马骨” literally means buying horse bones with much gold. This Chinese idiom comes from "Stratagems of the Warring States- Yan Dynasty" 《战国策·燕策一·燕昭王收破燕后即位》. It is said that an ancient courtier ...
-1
votes
0answers
20 views

Word or expression for someone who creates job security through complexity

I'm specifically looking for an idiom about a person who creates job security for himself or herself by unwittingly complicating things for his or her company. This would be someone who creates more ...
0
votes
3answers
43 views

Word for disappointed and dejected (slightly irritated too?) at the same time

So imagine you ask a person a serious question, and they make light of it. You feel a certain emotion which I'm trying to find the name for. Your shoulders may slump. Face and body seem to relax. ...
1
vote
3answers
49 views

Different ways to smile?

As the title indicates, I was looking for ways to poetically, or idiomatically describe ways to smile, or interesting ones anyway. I find that I always switch back to the most basic descriptive ways ('...
8
votes
4answers
559 views

Synonym for “in the blink of an eye”

I am translating from Middle Egyptian to English. For those who are curious, here is the hieroglyphic inscription: However, this is not a question about Middle Egyptian, but rather English. The ...
1
vote
1answer
37 views

Idiom for botching a lucky opportunity

I'm looking for a preferably short idiomatic verb phrase meaning "fail, through poor execution, to be rewarded by an unusually easy opportunity." An example scenario would be, the hottest girl in ...
3
votes
6answers
102 views

“Durch den Wind sein” in English

How would you translate "Ich bin etwas durch den Wind" into English? "Durch den Wind sein" means having scattered or not fully coherent thoughts, not having full presence of mind (Geistesgegenwart), ...
-1
votes
3answers
88 views

Other words to replace “let's”?

I am writing a project paper, and I find myself using the phrase "let's" a lot. I'm wondering if there are other phrases or words that I can use instead of "let's"? I've searched for an answer but ...
1
vote
2answers
131 views

A less morbid equivalent of the idiom “Giving someone enough rope to hang himself”

What may be a less morbid equivalent of the idiom "Giving someone enough rope to hang himself"? In other words, an idiom for empowering someone with a capability that they might, through ignorance, ...
2
votes
3answers
67 views

Is there an olfactory equivalent expression to “the scenic route”?

"Taking the scenic route" implies taking a less direct alternative to the most direct route toward some destination for the purpose of experiencing more interesting scenery along the way. So, is there ...
0
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1answer
39 views

Term for people in the same life situation

What is a term for people in the same life situation? Like, people who have the same health issue, or pregnant women.
1
vote
1answer
38 views

Word/phrase for vastly different methodologies/theories that lead to taking the same action?

Is there a good way to describe theories that are very different in their underlying story about how a system works, yet the theories prescribe similar actions. ("actions" assume the theory is ...
3
votes
4answers
81 views

I’m a little slow to process my thinking, but rather than just telling people I’m a bit slow I would like something witty to say

Anyone got anything witty to say as if I was sort of saying I’m a bit slow in a witty way or a self respectful way but with a bit a humour, sort of like in a melancholic self depreciating way and ...
16
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11answers
5k views

Equivalent of “teri lal” a Hindi phrase which means “you are right” said sarcastically (but not actually meant) [closed]

There is a saying in Hindi in India "teri lal" which translates "yours is red" which means "Whatever the case may be you are right" as in "you are always right". It is a sarcastic way of telling (...
2
votes
8answers
178 views

What word or phrase relates to 'being able to see through manipulation?'

I am looking for a word where people are able to see the hidden meanings and subliminal manipulation (in the media) Is there any word or phrase or idiom that might suit the narrative I'm trying to ...
13
votes
3answers
290 views

“and I'm the Queen of Sheba”

According to Longman Dictionary the droll comeback... and I’m the Queen of Sheba (humor) used as a reply when someone claims that they are famous or that they have done something impressive, but ...
6
votes
4answers
535 views

expression to say that one 'goes around a rule' to avoid it while not breaking it

I can't seem to recall the proper way to refer to the action of avoiding a rule or order not by breaking it but by using some sort of loophole to work around it. I'm not sure if it's an actual idiom ...
2
votes
3answers
120 views

What's the English equivalent of “it's the master's eye that makes the mill go”?

I'm trying to find out the English version of this saying, which in Italian is: "L'occhio del padrone ingrassa il cavallo," And in Spanish is: "El ojo del amo engorda el ganado". The idea is that if ...
1
vote
3answers
64 views

Any phrase or idiom for a person who tries to copy a professional's act without any of the skills needed

A person who tries to copy a professional and skillful person's act, without possessing any skills or experience needed
25
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27answers
9k views

English equivalent for Polish phrase meaning doing something fast and poor quality [closed]

The meaning of Polish 'doing something on knees' or 'on a knee' is completely different than English: https://www.macmillandictionary.com/dictionary/british/on-your-knees It is rather a metaphor to a ...
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2answers
67 views

I need to know what would you call someone that “Believes everyone is the same” such as addicts/alcholics [closed]

I hate STIGMA , I am bipolar and a recovering addict. I get treated the same as someone who is still being destructive. I AM SICK OF PEOPLE JUDGING ME AND NOT GIVING ME CHANCES because the term "...
0
votes
3answers
101 views

What do you call a language spoken with a thick accent?

If one speaks a foreign language making bad mistakes so that his speech sounds strange and broken, then he is speaking the word I'm looking for English (Spanish, Russian, etc.). Is there such an ...
1
vote
3answers
109 views

What is the English equivalent of the Arabic expression “she melts the iron”?

If I want to express that I was angry with my friend, and then she threw a party for my birthday, which is unexpected.  So what she did makes me not angry any more 😊 .... What idiom or expression ...
3
votes
6answers
154 views

What terms I can use to say the something is very easy to do, to learn, etc?

What terms I can use to say the something is very easy to do, to learn, etc? I have thought about easy-peasy, like "this is easy-peasy to do", or "a piece of cake". So, in general, Assembling ...
3
votes
5answers
147 views

What's the opposite of “last-minute (Christmas) shopping”?

The question is in the title. I'd like to know if there is an idiom or phrase used for someone who does not buy at the “last minute”, the hyperbolic expression is often used when purchasing gifts, ...
4
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3answers
115 views

Missing part of an idiom or expression I heard “Have you lost the [something] you were born with”

I am writing a story and my character is being scolded for doing something stupid. I have an expression on the tip of my tongue, but part of it keeps evading me! "Have you lost the [thing that keeps ...
3
votes
1answer
87 views

Scottish idiom meaning to enter a deal which turns out differently than agreed

I'm looking for a specific phrase that I didn't manage to catch in a phone call with my estate agent, a Scottish lady. The conversation topic was me informing her that my ex has moved out of the ...
-2
votes
3answers
159 views

What is the contradictory proverb to “When life gives you lemons, make lemonade”? [closed]

Sweet lemons and sour grapes tend to be used by people who have a reactionary outlook on life. They reason that things are just the way they are and we are bound to our circumstance. They will often ...
3
votes
2answers
88 views

Quote (proverb like structure) of knowing one's options

I'm looking for a quote to use in a sentence that says if it's free and doesn't cost anything to know your options (like a free estimate to a customer) then it can't hurt to find out. And that knowing ...
0
votes
2answers
25 views

To be displeased with in a jealous way

Suppose a person is after something or somebody. For example, Tom wants to be with Jane, but somebody else wins her heart, and Tom says, “She was ugly/fat/... anyway.” Is there a word or idiom to ...
5
votes
2answers
666 views

What is a good idiom for telling someone something that they already know a lot about? [duplicate]

Like when you're in a conversation with someone about something and you're telling them about XYZ, but it turns out they are already experts in the subject matter, an idiom like trying to teach the ...
16
votes
10answers
3k views

A picturesque equivalent for German “Beutelschneiderei”, i.e. what cut-purses and fraudsters do

In German there is a term Beutelschneiderei which in all dictionaries I have currently access to is being translated as "daylight robbery". However, Beutelschneiderei in German is a very picturesque ...
9
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5answers
2k views

What word describes a person who gains the trust of people on behalf of an adversary?

What word or idiom describes a person who gains the trust of people in an organization to identify potential threats to that organization? Example: Say Company (Organisation) "A" wants to know how ...
5
votes
4answers
147 views

Idiom for premonition

I am trying to remember an idiom that is used when someone has a premonition about something, often coincidentally i.e. I am thinking about someone and then they call me. I know there is the ...
15
votes
7answers
3k views

What do you call a question that is meant to make you look bad? [closed]

What is it called when you are asked a question that has nothing to do with the subject at hand and is sometimes meant to make you look bad? I think it is a legal term used in a court setting.
1
vote
3answers
73 views

What is another phrase to describe people “on the front line”?

Another way to say it is that these are the people in an organization who are “in the trenches”. They are doing the hardest or most important work. I would like to find a non-militaristic way of ...
1
vote
1answer
240 views

Alternatives to the expression “double down on something”

In broadcast news, especially from the US, recently there is frequent use of the expression "double down on something", usually when public figures repeat some claim they previously made, and usually ...
12
votes
5answers
6k views

Is there an idiom that means to “slow” or “stop the hemorrhaging”?

I have two related words in my head, “flow” and “haemorrhage” (US hemorrhage), but I can't remember the exact phrase (or idiom) that fits perfectly. It should suggest impeding or blocking the flow of ...