Search found 7622 matches

by Erik_Kowal
Mon Feb 19, 2018 3:33 am
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: currently sat
Replies: 9
Views: 137

Re: currently sat

It's perhaps more the sense of a lack of intention to do anything else, or deliberate passivity, rather than a sense of purpose or making a statement. What's being conveyed, it seems to me, is the attitude of an onlooker, or of a person who doesn't want to be involved in something that's happening i...
by Erik_Kowal
Sun Feb 18, 2018 10:52 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: currently sat
Replies: 9
Views: 137

Re: currently sat

As Bob says, it's a very common colloquial usage in English (albeit not in American English — as far as I'm aware, it's largely restricted to the British Isles). It's not 'bad English', however. It's merely English in a different register of formality and intimacy than the academic style of English ...
by Erik_Kowal
Thu Feb 15, 2018 2:42 am
Forum: Word Origins and Meanings
Topic: tinfoil hat
Replies: 9
Views: 1027

Re: tinfoil hat

tony h wrote:
Thu Feb 15, 2018 1:35 am
Ok, I looked up "Paul Revere and the Raiders" but what is the connection to tinfoil or tricorn hat?
Tony, do an image search on them and your question will be at least partially answered.
by Erik_Kowal
Wed Feb 14, 2018 9:00 pm
Forum: No, wait. Don't tell me
Topic: milquetoast
Replies: 1
Views: 254

Re: milquetoast

Maybe, if the spelling was changed to 'tresparsing'.
by Erik_Kowal
Tue Feb 13, 2018 2:53 am
Forum: Addicts' Corner
Topic: Bizarre photo
Replies: 2
Views: 190

Re: Bizarre photo

Thanks Tony, that was a good story nicely told. :)
by Erik_Kowal
Sun Feb 11, 2018 5:03 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Curtain
Replies: 3
Views: 69

Re: Curtain

Depending on what aspect of it you want to emphasize, you could call it a bed canopy, bed curtain, lace curtain, princess curtain or mosquito net.
by Erik_Kowal
Sun Feb 11, 2018 12:34 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: ask someone
Replies: 1
Views: 58

Re: ask someone

The way that you would normally interpret this expression (i.e. in line with your last sentence) is correct.

The answer to both your questions is therefore 'no'.
by Erik_Kowal
Sun Feb 11, 2018 12:29 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: it is worth
Replies: 3
Views: 174

Re: it is worth

Compare these with "It is {worth [making] the effort} / [taking] the trouble} to see that movie". My sense is that the problem you are having centres on the omission of the unstated but implicitly understood elements that I have explicitly included in the sentence above. Your 6) is not idiomatic: *I...
by Erik_Kowal
Sun Feb 11, 2018 2:46 am
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Purely out of curiosity: loth/loath
Replies: 5
Views: 227

Re: Purely out of curiosity: loth/loath

I spell the adjective loth, though like Phil, I've also seen it spelled loath. However, I have no particular feeling of attachment to loth. The online Merriam-Webster describes it as "[a] less common spelling of LOTH", and most of the other dictionaries I looked at take a similar view. (The not unre...
by Erik_Kowal
Sun Feb 11, 2018 2:37 am
Forum: Word Origins and Meanings
Topic: Ground Zero
Replies: 2
Views: 93

Re: Ground Zero

Wikipedia's article on Ground Zero says the following: "In terms of nuclear explosions and other large bombs, the term "ground zero" (also known as "surface zero"[1]) describes the point on the Earth's surface closest to a detonation.[2] In the case of an explosion above the ground, ground zero ref...
by Erik_Kowal
Sun Feb 11, 2018 2:32 am
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Gifts
Replies: 4
Views: 125

Re: Gifts

Good call, Tony! :P
by Erik_Kowal
Sat Feb 10, 2018 4:03 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Cute chair
Replies: 5
Views: 130

Re: Cute chair

It's a (wicker) hanging egg chair.

I can't say it looks particularly comfortable for anyone who's not already a cat or dog, or who was born with a head (or at least, with a head that sits above their shoulders).
by Erik_Kowal
Fri Feb 09, 2018 12:57 pm
Forum: No, wait. Don't tell me
Topic: A Very Big Worry
Replies: 2
Views: 96

Re: A Very Big Worry

I'm wondering about these "reasons of his own"...
by Erik_Kowal
Fri Feb 09, 2018 4:17 am
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: arrived in front of
Replies: 6
Views: 155

Re: arrived in front of

I think the reason it works better with a race than a conference is that to cross the finish line in front of someone else means preceding them in both time and space, hence invoking both connotations in the mind of the hearer or reader. Trolley's specimen sentence illustrates this quite well.
by Erik_Kowal
Thu Feb 08, 2018 3:20 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Queuing up
Replies: 3
Views: 108

Re: Queuing up

Also Tensabarrier®, [retractable] [stretch] belt barriers.

(Descriptors in square brackets are optional.)