Search found 7548 matches

by Erik_Kowal
Sun Dec 10, 2017 5:57 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Sniper
Replies: 1
Views: 11

Re: Sniper

I'd call such a person a spotter.
by Erik_Kowal
Sun Dec 10, 2017 5:51 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Fruits
Replies: 5
Views: 54

Re: Fruits

BonnieL wrote:
Sat Dec 09, 2017 11:42 pm
I've never seen a persimmon. Are they sweet or tart?
I've probably eaten about two persimmons in my life. I remember the ripe fruit as having soft-to-mushy, moderately sweet, slightly aromatic flesh encased in a skin that is physically akin to a tomato's.
by Erik_Kowal
Wed Dec 06, 2017 1:57 am
Forum: Word Origins and Meanings
Topic: The bones of his ass
Replies: 3
Views: 72

Re: The bones of his ass

I've never come across this colourful expression before, but I suspect your emaciation hypothesis may be correct. Not only would one's bottom look emaciated, but without much of a layer of cushioning fat or muscle it would be very uncomfortable to sit for long on a hard surface like a wooden bench.
by Erik_Kowal
Tue Dec 05, 2017 12:24 pm
Forum: Miscellaneous
Topic: Why English is so hard to learn
Replies: 5
Views: 104

Re: Why English is so hard to learn

I can think of a few instances in Danish where the meaning of a word changes according to the placement of the stress, but overall that language doesn't have anywhere near as many identically spelled but differently pronounced words as English does. The problem that learners of English encounter wit...
by Erik_Kowal
Tue Dec 05, 2017 12:09 am
Forum: Word Origins and Meanings
Topic: Sea change
Replies: 10
Views: 573

Re: Sea change

I echo Trolley and Bob.

Welcome back, Ken!
by Erik_Kowal
Mon Dec 04, 2017 11:41 am
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Plate
Replies: 2
Views: 68

Re: Plate

Here, 'plate' relates to the same literal object that you quoted a definition for, except that in this context it is also being used metaphorically to mean 'program(me), to-do list, unfinished tasks' etc. (i.e. the contents of the plate).
by Erik_Kowal
Mon Dec 04, 2017 1:22 am
Forum: Word Origins and Meanings
Topic: scot-free
Replies: 2
Views: 57

Re: scot-free

Being unaware of the etymology of scot in this context I'd never previously made the connection, but there's another descendant of the Old Norse root word that is still very much alive and well in Danish, namely skat, which means tax, treasure or darling, depending on the context. As for White House...
by Erik_Kowal
Mon Dec 04, 2017 1:06 am
Forum: Welcome to the Clubhouse
Topic: The new style Clubhouse and site
Replies: 21
Views: 1250

Re: The new style Clubhouse and site

Phil White wrote:
Sun Dec 03, 2017 7:30 pm
I shall have a look at where I can change the text to something with a little more decorum...
Howdy-doody?
by Erik_Kowal
Fri Dec 01, 2017 5:35 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Ashtray
Replies: 5
Views: 102

Re: Ashtray

I'd go with notch, groove or recess. My sense is that this feature of an ashtray is not often given any thought by most people, so it lacks a particular term to describe it in everyday usage. Maybe there is a different technical term for it that is used by ashtray designers, but if so I don't know it.
by Erik_Kowal
Wed Nov 29, 2017 10:34 pm
Forum: Oh, and have you read...?
Topic: When languages die, ecosystems often die with them
Replies: 4
Views: 120

Re: When languages die, ecosystems often die with them

Tony is right. According to this Wikipedia page , "The name Welsh originated as an exonym given to its speakers by the Anglo-Saxons, meaning "foreign speech" (see Walha ). The native term for the language is Cymraeg, meaning "British", and the name of the country of Wales is Cymru ." Another page on...
by Erik_Kowal
Wed Nov 29, 2017 10:21 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: High-end
Replies: 3
Views: 89

Re: High-end

Stevenloan wrote:
Wed Nov 29, 2017 4:45 pm
What adjective do you use to describe "high-end fashion clothes"?
Tony's implied answer (which I agree with) was, in effect, ridiculously expensive.
by Erik_Kowal
Tue Nov 28, 2017 9:33 pm
Forum: Oh, and have you read...?
Topic: When languages die, ecosystems often die with them
Replies: 4
Views: 120

Re: When languages die, ecosystems often die with them

One might question whether the locally important words are being imported to the new language. I suspect that the pressure to adopt a language understood beyond one's immediate locality is also accompanied in most cases by the pressure to conform to, and adopt or accept, the norms of a generally mo...
by Erik_Kowal
Sun Nov 26, 2017 8:26 pm
Forum: Oh, and have you read...?
Topic: When languages die, ecosystems often die with them
Replies: 4
Views: 120

When languages die, ecosystems often die with them

"You probably know that much of the world's environment is under threat. But a new study says languages are disappearing alongside plants and animals. The study, from the World Wildlife Fund, measured the threat to languages using a scale that tracks how threatened species are. Not only are many lan...
by Erik_Kowal
Sat Nov 25, 2017 12:31 am
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: to take to school
Replies: 1
Views: 56

Re: to take to school

Which of the following can she say to her son? 1) I have bought the cookies to take to school. Answer: Ambiguous statement. It is unclear who will take them to school. 2) I have bought the cookies for you to take to school. Answer: She has bought the cookies for the son to take to school. 3) I have...
by Erik_Kowal
Sat Nov 25, 2017 12:25 am
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Mountain part
Replies: 5
Views: 159

Re: Mountain part

Ha! Thanks for the corrective info, Bob. :)