Search found 8206 matches

by Erik_Kowal
Mon Mar 30, 2020 3:40 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Two feet of concrete
Replies: 1
Views: 21

Re: Two feet of concrete

I presume Person A means that in normal circumstances, less than two feet of roadway is visible between you and the car in front because the highways are so crowded with traffic. Los Angeles is particularly notorious for its nose-to-tail traffic jams. Many roads in the US, especially in the suburbs,...
by Erik_Kowal
Thu Mar 26, 2020 7:20 am
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Semicircle
Replies: 2
Views: 197

Re: Semicircle

I don't know the technical term for that spiked semicircular steel object, but I do know that its purpose is to bar anyone from trying to get round the end of the object it is attached to. You typically find them being used to make the end of a wall or fence that runs up to a river, canal or railway...
by Erik_Kowal
Tue Mar 24, 2020 6:25 am
Forum: Word Origins and Meanings
Topic: kitsch
Replies: 3
Views: 5662

Re: kitsch

I couldn't help wondering what sort of situation made it worth coining a special word to describe the activity of scraping mud up off the street. Picture the scene: ------- (LOCATION: A COTTAGE IN A SMALL TOWN IN BAVARIA, CIRCA 1830) HUSBAND: Did you kitsch today, Liebchen? WIFE: No, meine Liebe, I ...
by Erik_Kowal
Sat Mar 21, 2020 8:35 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: It gets the lungs
Replies: 7
Views: 4900

Re: It gets the lungs

That must explain the new habit some people now have of bumping their elbows together as a form of greeting. They obviously can't tell their aerosol from their elbow.
by Erik_Kowal
Sat Mar 21, 2020 5:27 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Flying through the letter box
Replies: 3
Views: 315

Re: Flying through the letter box

I have no idea what Person B is referring to. Maybe they meant to say "the bills are flying through the letter box", but it would still be a complete non sequitur lacking any connection with what Person A said.
by Erik_Kowal
Fri Mar 20, 2020 4:21 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Bloody hell
Replies: 2
Views: 305

Re: Bloody hell

The exclamation "Bloody hell!" can be used in a wide variety of situations, ranging from shock, surprise and dismay to approval and admiration. In the context you described, I take "Bloody hell for me" as an expression of admiration from Simon Cowell. This may make his utterance a bit easier to foll...
by Erik_Kowal
Thu Mar 19, 2020 3:39 am
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: League
Replies: 2
Views: 631

Re: League

The phrase is indeed often used in that context, but it can be applied more generally too.

I suspect the term originated in sports, where groups of teams of roughly similar ability are often organized as a hierarchy of leagues.
by Erik_Kowal
Tue Mar 17, 2020 11:06 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Charge way
Replies: 3
Views: 631

Re: Charge way

Trolley's right.

I suppose the "tine of need" is where you find yourself when you've been forced to fork out over the odds.
by Erik_Kowal
Mon Mar 16, 2020 6:07 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Across the desk
Replies: 6
Views: 1296

Re: Across the desk

If I was asked to describe what is happening in the photo, I would say "The woman has fallen asleep at her desk" or "The woman is asleep at her desk". If I particularly wanted to emphasize her posture, I would say "The woman is lying [asleep] across her desk". The form "laying" is also often used, e...
by Erik_Kowal
Sat Mar 14, 2020 5:29 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: A lesson to
Replies: 3
Views: 1484

Re: A lesson to

My sense of the difference in the way these expressions are used is that the admonitory aspect of "lesson to" is stronger than with "lesson for". But they are both grammatically standard terms.
by Erik_Kowal
Mon Mar 09, 2020 4:51 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Splash water
Replies: 2
Views: 2844

Re: Splash water

Yes.

I would argue that in this case, their lack of considerateness towards the pedestrian is more significant than their lack of common sense.
by Erik_Kowal
Thu Mar 05, 2020 5:25 am
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: House
Replies: 4
Views: 4498

Re: House

There are two possible terms that both seem equally valid to me, namely maisonette, and terraced house (in British English) or row house (in American English). In the US it might also be called a town house. According to this page, "The term ‘maisonette’ refers to an apartment on two or more storeys...
by Erik_Kowal
Sun Mar 01, 2020 5:07 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Coloring books
Replies: 2
Views: 3989

Re: Coloring books

They are implying that AOC's mentality, temperament or level of understanding is that of a young child (i.e. like that of someone who would be attracted to a colouring book).
by Erik_Kowal
Fri Feb 28, 2020 3:12 am
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Apples
Replies: 5
Views: 4687

Re: Apples

As far as I can make out, it's the fruit of a species of ziziphus, otherwise known as the jujube, green jujube or Chinese date.
by Erik_Kowal
Tue Feb 25, 2020 4:09 am
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Think pass the nose
Replies: 3
Views: 4627

Re: Think pass the nose

There's a typo in the transcript. The term should be "think past [i.e. beyond] the nose on one's face".