86

The previous answers are well and good, but you can also be respectful when talking about a recently-deceased person by referring to them simply as: "The late Mr. Smith..." This is a formal (and thus, respectful) indication that Mr. Smith has recently passed away, and also avoids any reference to religion, in case others might take offense or discomfort.


77

People all over the Internet have asked the same thing—which, on the face of it, suggests that different forum posters (and perhaps, in some cases, the same people at different times) have used it to mean both things. For example: Does OP mean Original Post or Original Poster or both? (AnandTech, posted January 7, 2005) Does OP mean the original post or ...


76

The phrase you are looking for is "may he rest in peace". "Robin Williams, may he rest in peace, was..." The phrase "God put him in Heaven" would sound charmingly exotic. The person you are speaking to would likely have never heard it before, and your sentiment would sound all the more touching and sincere for its unfamiliarity. "God forgive him" implies ...


72

This is known as a Dine and Dash A dine and dash (also referred to as "dine and ditch", "eat and run", "chew and screw" "doing a runner" or "beating the check") is a form of theft by fraud, in which a patron orders and consumes food from a restaurant or similar establishment with no intent to pay, then leaves without paying. Wikipedia


41

So bad, it's good is often used in reference to movies like this, but can also apply to comedians or any other entertainment, and presumably a joke. Example usage: Troll 2 is one of those so-bad-it's-good movies. _ I just watched Troll 2 it was so bad it was good. Within the context of telling a joke you could say something like: Alvin is ...


34

Such a person is often termed a Cassandra.


27

"Abstain," as you suggest, is widely-understood, at least in the UK. See this Sky News article on the EU withdrawal bill which includes: However, there were still rebels among Labour and Tory MPs, along with some notable abstentions.


26

"Exercise in futility" is an idiomatic term that describes that scenario. Definition: a useless action that cannot succeed Response to: "I'm going to have one of the developers contact Apple and ask them to add a new feature to Apple Maps." "That would be an exercise in futility!"


25

We say "below freezing" The usual way to express this is below freezing, which clearly indicates a lower temperature than freezing. The British National Corpus has 38 results for "below freezing," and none for "more than freezing" or "less than freezing." The Corpus of Contemporary American English has 256 results for "below freezing," and none for "more ...


23

Typically you'd expect to hear: "e" is the third from last letter or "e" is the third to last letter and you may sometimes hear "e" is the last but two


22

A phrase that's often used would be a dad joke. (nb: You don't need to be a dad to make one, as my S.O. likes to remind me with my jokes...) Any joke that's so abysmal such that it makes people groan could fall under this. Essentially, think of any joke your dad would make. Dad, I'm hungry! Hi Hungry, I'm dad! Also, jokes with a buildup you just know ...


22

Socialites: someone who participates in social activities and spends a significant amount of time entertaining and being entertained at fashionable events attended by others of similar standing.


21

"Value for money". "More bounce for the ounce".


21

You may be thinking of a Hobson's choice: A Hobson's choice is a free choice in which only one option is offered. As a person may refuse to take that option, the choice is therefore between taking the option or not; "take it or leave it". The phrase is said to originate with Thomas Hobson (1544–1631), a livery stable owner in Cambridge, England. To rotate ...


20

If you want to retain the use of the word "God" you could use the following: "Mr. Smith, God rest his soul, ..."


19

You could perhaps call it a wild goose chase:- a worthless hunt or chase; a futile pursuit.


19

"Err on the side of caution" comes to mind.


19

I'm not really sure who is qualified to say that one use or another of this abbreviation is "correct" or "incorrect". But I have certainly used "OP" to stand for "original post" instead of "original poster". The Oxford Dictionaries entry for "OP" gives this as a possible meaning: (in online forums or comment pages) original post (or poster). It also ...


18

I think what you are looking for is anti-joke, from Wikipedia: Anti-humor is a type of indirect humor that involves the joke-teller delivering something which is deliberately not funny, or lacking in intrinsic meaning. The practice relies on the expectation on the part of the audience of something humorous, and when this does not happen,...


16

A fool’s errand came to mind. Definition: An attempt to do something that has no chance of success. Billions of dollars have been spent on long-range weather forecasting, but it’s a fool’s errand.


16

Since praying, in this context, is a religious activity, there is no non-religious equivalent. However you might use "Spare a thought for [X] [at this difficult time]"


16

Well you, yourself suggest, 'Modesty aside'. It is quite commonly used. Google ngram: modesty aside Example Of course, all modesty aside, I'm the better swordsman. The Phantom's Opera By Sadie Montgomery 2007


16

The sensation is said to cause the mouth to pucker. From Up North Again: More of Ontario's Wilderness, from Ladybugs to the Pleiades by D Bennet and T Tiner: Chokecherries are not as dangerous as their name suggests, though they can taste harsh and astringent, causing the mouth to pucker and dry.


15

In the software company I work for, we call that: "paving the cow path" That's when a client wants to use the software but doesn't want to change any of their old, established practices that the software may streamline for them because they or their staff are resistant to change. On the website AgileConnection.com, Jim Highsmith offers this definition: ...


15

There is a commonly used expression in business, return on investment often abbreviated ROI


15

I don't think any of the answers provided really express over-reaction to positive news. You could still use jubilant, ecstatic or bursting regardless of whether or not the subject is justifiably excited. I believe gushing is the adjective you are looking for: Gushing (Of speech or writing) effusive or exaggeratedly enthusiastic Or the verb form: Gush To ...


15

Play (it) safe to be careful and not take risks hedge (against something): to lessen the risk of something happening hedge (your bets): to protect yourself against making the wrong choice Abundant caution Abundans cautela non nocet (Lt.) – "Abundant caution does no harm." Thus, one can never be too careful; even excessive precautions don't hurt ...


15

The common usage would be "third to last". If you need a weird word, use antepenultimate or propenultimate: "Two before the last, i.e., the one immediately before the penultimate, in a series." This book has ten chapters — chapter 8 is the antepenultimate one. (From Wiktionary)


15

The question is entitled 'Polite way of talking about a person recently dead.' Certainly in British English, references to religion are best avoided unless in a specifically religious context. It would be usual to say either 'the late Mr X' or 'the recently deceased Mr X.'


15

You can consider the lesser of two evils (also a lesser evil). the less unpleasant of two choices, neither of which is good: But allowing a criminal to go free is perhaps the lesser of two evils if the alternative is imprisoning an innocent person. http://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/british/the-lesser-of-two-evils


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