Questions tagged [phrase-requests]

This tag is for questions seeking a phrase that fits a meaning. If you're specifically seeking only a single word, see the "single word requests" tag too.

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1answer
56 views

Is there a word for the bias of not knowing what came before?

Is there a word or phrase for the bias of not knowing what came before? Of thinking that an idea under consideration is truly new? I'm looking for a word to describe the bias that comes from this ...
2
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4answers
83 views

Term for 'going back to fight an old war'?

Is there any phrase that figuratively yet succinctly captures the meaning of 'going back to do something difficult that has been done in the past yet has never been resolved'? For example, imagine a ...
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1answer
38 views

My bad vs. Our bad

Has anyone one of you heard the phrase in the plural form? I'm about to translate a rap song :D and I don't really want to say 'we're sorry' there. 'My bad' would be a perfect fit, but the thing is ...
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3answers
73 views

An alternative to “Old Wives' Tales” to avoid implying old women are likely to be wrong

An old wives' tale, according to Collins, is a traditional belief, especially one which is incorrect. We might not always want to imply that married women, however ancient, are repositories of ...
7
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1answer
2k views

Saying or expression for “behave or f… off”

I remember reading a saying or expression that was used to warn someone to behave. It was along the line of (teaser because it contains an offensive word): If I recall correctly, it was mostly used ...
1
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1answer
39 views

How to describe “the remaining portion of a target” in a simple term or phrase?

Let's say I run a car dealership and I gave my sales a target of selling 50 cars this month. They have sold 25 already. Is there a word to describe the remaining 25 cars? For example, the goal of ...
22
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3answers
6k views

Is there a term for a child born after the death of its sibling?

A couple loses their only child and some time later they have another child. Is there a term for that second child? I once heard a parent use a phrase to describe it, but can't remember anymore.
6
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5answers
353 views

What is the word to describe pseudo-elite people who despite being wealthy have low standards of behavior? [duplicate]

What I mean is being uncultured, not necessarily evil. This is often the case with people who have recently climbed the socio-economical ladder and newly gained huge wealth in a short amount of time, ...
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0answers
43 views

Phrase for jokingly pretending that someone's good point is a flaw?

Is there a phrase for complimenting someone by jokingly pretending that their good point is a flaw? Let me give an example, précised from a recent WhatsApp conversation: A: That bike ride was way too ...
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0answers
49 views
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10answers
3k views

What's happening inside the Old Lady?

Is there a term for the kind of elaborating progression seen in children's songs such as "The Old Lady Who Swallowed..." and "There's a Hole in the Bottom of the Sea"? I can almost ...
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0answers
13 views

Phrase for a short persuasive talk that's longer than an elevator pitch?

I'd like to find a word or phrase for a talk very much like an elevator pitch, but specifically a notch longer (more than a minute, less than a long time). It must indicate an explanation likely to ...
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0answers
18 views

How to start a sentence with “To name a few”? or any alternative phrase for an academic document? [migrated]

How I can start a sentence with "To name a few"? I have read this post. I am writing a paper and for saying how important is the topic, I want to add a few examples. I do not want to list ...
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2answers
51 views

What's it called when a company owns products or services that strictly limit consumers to that company's products or services?

What's it called when a company owns products or services that strictly limit consumers to that company's products or services? For example, a camera only saves images in a format readable by a ...
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3answers
81 views

Searching for a negative idiom. Where a person sacrifices long term for small relief [duplicate]

What's a negative idiom for a situation where a person sacrifices long term benefit for small, short term relief. Example: I am cold so I cut off pieces of my jacket to start a fire. Basically ...
20
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8answers
5k views

What’s the English for “democrature”, a dictatorship pretending to be a democracy through fraudulent elections?

The French term democrature (from democratie + dictature) is defined as: Dictature déguisée en démocratie par l’organisation d’élections non libres, contrôlées et/ou frauduleuses. Par extension, tout ...
0
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0answers
30 views

What is the appropriate phrase for whispering to someone's ear?

What is the appropriate phrase/word for whispering into someone's (most probably a close friend) ear generally to share some secret about someone else?
0
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2answers
55 views

Best term for a household farm

Russian law allows households to possess a certain amount of land (1-6 acres) where family members can grow vegetables, fruits and so forth and sell such agricultural products freely without paying ...
3
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2answers
68 views

Term for neologisms created to distinguish between new and old technologies [duplicate]

For example: book -> paper book, e-book phone -> telephone, smartphone Term to describe the creation/modification of words because of the advent of technology.
13
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12answers
3k views

What is a word/expression for useless advice?

In Czech there is an expression "hraběcí rada". It refers to meaningless/useless advice - something which is factually true but cannot be meaningfully applied by the recipient of said advice....
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1answer
78 views

What do you call a “hidden” shape denoted by a dashed line?

Is there a word (or short phrase, preferably two words) that describes a shape which is not visible, but whose presence is indicated (e.g. in an illustration, by a dashed line)? Particularly, an ...
0
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0answers
25 views

What are parts of writing like “statement”, “assertion”, “argument”, “hypothesis”, etc collectively called?

Consider the following made up paragraph Suppose I give you a word, any word. Would you be able to make sense of it? Is it even possible to make sense of a word without surrounding context? I do not ...
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0answers
31 views

“Red-marked copy”: A draft text with changes highlighted?

I always thought of "red-marked copy" as a standard way of referring to a draft text in which the changes from a previous draft are highlighted. After casually using it when talking to a ...
2
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1answer
170 views

A phrase meaning a drawback turned out to be an advantage [duplicate]

I remember having heard one before but can't say how it went. The phrase says that what initially seemed like a disadvantage — became an advantage. If anyone knows anything even similar to this ...
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3answers
64 views

How can this situation be described in a word(or a concise phrase)? [closed]

I would like to describe the funded project of someone incompetent who has failed to properly complete it mainly due to his incompetence but who has managed to present it in its failed state as a ...
1
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1answer
67 views

How would you describe a situation where you can only stop something by doing it first?

I'd like to know what this situation is called. The gist is the only way you can stop something is by doing it first. A real world example is a MS Windows feature called sticky keys. You can turn on ...
4
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2answers
157 views

What is a very general word to describe a country exercising control over a territory?

Countries that are not independent states are often called dependencies or territories as in “French Polynesia is a devolved parliamentary dependency”. In the context in which I am using the word, it ...
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1answer
28 views

Is there a better word or phrase to describe ‘exercise’, as in, working out?

The best I can think of is physical training, or physical discipline.
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0answers
29 views

More general phrase for “putting name to a face”

The situation is you read a book by a famous person. Then later, you meet people from the company founded by the author of the book you read. Here it would not be appropriate to use "Putting a ...
0
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0answers
28 views

Are there terms for referring to the different parts of a country's full title?

Take "People's Republic of China" or "Kingdom of Norway", for example. I can refer to "China" or "Norway" part of the title as the country name (or geographical ...
0
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2answers
44 views

idiom or a smooth way to say that the game is the right level/scope for a person?

I'm looking for a way to say that a certain game is challenging enough (but not too much) and of the right scope. So far I came up with 'This game is in my league' but that doesn't sound quite right.
1
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1answer
44 views

Formal word/phrase to refer to “year begin” effect

I want to find a single word or perhaps an academic-sounding phrase to refer to the effect on something that results from the calendar year changing. I initially tried: "year begin effect" ...
1
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0answers
22 views

Any popular phrases that urge the hearer to help a good cause even if help seems unnecessary

What I'm hoping for is something along the lines of "better safe than sorry," but instead of urging the hearer to take possibly-unnecessary safety precautions, my context is one of shared ...
2
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1answer
117 views

How to define & differentiate, “on hand”, “to hand”, “at hand”?

An English learner asked me a question what's the difference between: on hand to hand at hand in hand And how to identify the difference and use them correctly? All these phrasal verbs are so close ...
0
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1answer
28 views

How to refer to something that is beyond postmodern?

Here are a few common amalgamations that use 'post' to mark a new reference point: modern art -> postmodern art modern portfolio theory -> postmodern portfolio theory This is all very ...
0
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1answer
57 views

The last one to touch the TV/car/ machine is to blame for any subsequent issues

Is there some kind of phrase or expression that describes the blame assigned to the last person to touch a machine or system when it goes wrong? I think this probably comes from a precentury saying. ...
0
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1answer
28 views

Is there a phrase for making someone do something that is your duty by making it look like it is their responsibility? [duplicate]

In Hindi there is phrase for this which literally translates to "putting something (a task) on someone's head" and another which translates to "sticking a task on someone".
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4answers
86 views

Word or phrase that means correct, but difficult to interpret - the opposite of expressive?

I'm critiquing code that runs perfectly, but which is difficult for people to read, understand, and interpret. Code which is pleasant to read and is relatively easy for people to interpret is often ...
0
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1answer
35 views

Is there a word or fixed phrase / idiom for a vicious circle of obtuseness? [duplicate]

I recently told my father-in-law that I thought he was being obtuse, and he then acted as if he didn’t understand the concept of being obtuse. I feel like there’s a word for this. What would we call ...
5
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6answers
233 views

Single word for “led my team to victory”

I need to submit my achievements for purpose of an interview. But the questionnaire format is such that I need to use as few words as possible. I want to convey "led my team to victory in ABC XYZ ...
0
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2answers
67 views

What would you call someone that is very enthusiastic about something silly or trivial? [closed]

What would you call someone who is very enthusiastic about something silly or trivial?  For example, one who is exceedingly enthusiastic about some bad singer or band, without knowing that there are ...
15
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10answers
5k views

If I cannot win, then I will make it impossible for you to win

We have a joke about a foreigner that went to a wet market in zone 1 and saw a farmer selling live frogs in an open basket. As we all know, frogs jump. Actually, they jump about quite a bit when in a ...
2
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1answer
82 views

What is the opposite of “setting the bar”?

I am looking for a metaphorical phrase which would mean the opposite of "set the bar". Like "set the upper limit", but not that straightforward. When you set the bar, you are ...
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6answers
1k views

What's it called when someone insults you for not knowing something that you've never learnt or that's not in your field? [duplicate]

For example, let's say I'm a physicist, so I'm not stupid. But, I'm talking to someone who is an accountant and they insult me for not knowing accounting jargon or how to do things involved in their ...
-1
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1answer
77 views

Word that means not being upfront about your intentions in the beginning of your stated goals [duplicate]

I'm looking for a word that means not being upfront about your intentions in the beginning of your stated goals. Emphasis on the word stated, a goal has to be explicitly stated. It should be an ...
1
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3answers
48 views

Better phrase for “dependent on” in this scenario

I am trying to think of a word or phrase that best describes this scenario. Although Marcia ended up finding a new job that she enjoyed, it would not have happened had corporate not had layoffs ...
0
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3answers
65 views

Word or phrase describing a painful learning experience

I'm looking for a word or phrase that describes that something has been learned painfully (physical or metaphorical pain). Example: I have ...... learned not to touch my eyes after chopping chili ...
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2answers
467 views

Non-ableist alternative to “blind spot”

The phrase "blind spot" has been called ableist. For someone looking to avoid it, what are some good alternatives? Sample sentences: We need to be aware of our blind spots to make sure a ...
11
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10answers
4k views

Term for a technique intended to draw criticism to an opposing view by overstating that view as your own (often emphatically)

The reason I'm asking is this: I have a relative (real 60s hippie) who does this all the time on Facebook (note audience: Friends only), and FB doesn't understand that it's not his own opinion that he'...
0
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1answer
45 views

A phrase to describe when a person is faced with 'a tough decision'? [duplicate]

I am translating a novel, and have reached a point where I am in doubt of how to translate it. The main character stands in a situation, where she has to make a tough decision. Which phrases could be ...

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