Search found 8472 matches

by Erik_Kowal
Fri Jan 01, 2021 6:18 am
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Machine
Replies: 3
Views: 863

Re: Machine

Wikipedia has a page devoted to this type of equipment.

It says the following:: "A pallet jack, also known as a pallet truck,[1] pallet pump, pump truck, scooter, dog, [1] or jigger[1] is a tool used to lift and move pallets".
by Erik_Kowal
Thu Dec 31, 2020 2:36 am
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: couple months!
Replies: 5
Views: 971

Re: couple months!

Your preferred usage is standard British English, Ken.

However, my impression from having both lived in the States and still reading articles written by Americans is that the "couple months" formulation is steadily gaining ground in the USA and may now even be the norm.
by Erik_Kowal
Wed Dec 30, 2020 4:49 am
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Without makeup
Replies: 4
Views: 877

Re: Without makeup

I suppose you could also describe such a face as having "a natural complexion", though that would probably be applied more to women than to men.
by Erik_Kowal
Tue Dec 29, 2020 3:05 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Without makeup
Replies: 4
Views: 877

Re: Without makeup

I would describe it as unmade-up or naked.

Unmade-up is probably the more usual term.

Something that is barefaced or baldfaced is a different thing entirely.
by Erik_Kowal
Mon Dec 28, 2020 5:50 am
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: the angels
Replies: 2
Views: 665

Re: the angels

The only way to find out for sure what Jack meant is to ask him. But since his answer to Tom is clearly facetious (and since angels don't actually exist, despite the belief of the majority of citizens of the USA that they are real), it hardly seems worth investigating how many angels Jack knew — or ...
by Erik_Kowal
Sat Dec 26, 2020 3:34 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: fell twice
Replies: 3
Views: 883

Re: fell twice

Not to overlook Schrodinger's umlaut, which simultaneously exists and doesn't exist, depending on who's writing his name. :lol:
by Erik_Kowal
Thu Dec 24, 2020 12:13 am
Forum: Word Origins and Meanings
Topic: deuteragonist
Replies: 3
Views: 748

Re: deuteragonist

...quadragonist... pentagonist... hexagonist... heptagonist... For those hefty high-Victorian novels (or novel sequences) like The Forsyte Saga.
by Erik_Kowal
Sun Dec 20, 2020 5:29 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: it would be preferable
Replies: 1
Views: 680

Re: it would be preferable

A native speaker would be likely to simplify that message to something like: For him to come here would be better than for you to go there. If he comes here, it would be better than if you go there. Him coming here would be better than you going there. Shortest of all: Better that he come(s) here th...
by Erik_Kowal
Sat Dec 19, 2020 2:51 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: dated two women
Replies: 2
Views: 786

Re: dated two women

Any of those inferences is possible because that sentence is highly ambiguous, as you obviously already know.

Anyone who prioritized clarity in their messaging would find a different way of expressing their intended meaning.
by Erik_Kowal
Fri Dec 18, 2020 6:43 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: safe place
Replies: 3
Views: 980

Re: safe place

Strangely, I prefer sentence a in your first pair (the attributive construction) and sentence d (the postpositive construction) in your second pair. Annoyingly, I have no idea why at present. The obvious difference is that the heart of the expression in a) is "safe from" and in d) it is "safe for" ...
by Erik_Kowal
Fri Dec 18, 2020 4:17 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Style
Replies: 2
Views: 863

Re: Style

There's an expression which is common in North America, namely the injunction to "fake it till you make it". According to the brief article on it in Wikipedia, "Fake it till you make it" (or "Fake it until you make it") is an [...] aphorism which suggests that by imitating confidence, competence, an...
by Erik_Kowal
Fri Dec 18, 2020 7:19 am
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Hold my Ensure
Replies: 3
Views: 971

Re: Hold my Ensure

Just to supplement Trolley's otherwise nutritious explanation, Person B's utterance is a play on the well-known trope of "Hold my beer!" that is jocularly attributed to people — stereotypically, they are American working-class and/or rural-dwelling men — who are about to do something that most peopl...
by Erik_Kowal
Mon Dec 14, 2020 11:20 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Rice balls
Replies: 3
Views: 1049

Re: Rice balls

The description is only an approximation description of the shape, and not to be taken too literally.
by Erik_Kowal
Sat Dec 12, 2020 3:16 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: the devil, he may take you
Replies: 9
Views: 3278

Re: the devil, he may take you

navi wrote: Sat Dec 12, 2020 8:30 amI had found meaning in something meaningless!
You possess a useful superpower for parsing the utterances of many of today's politicians.
by Erik_Kowal
Sat Dec 12, 2020 2:57 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: whose book's cover
Replies: 12
Views: 2711

Re: whose book's cover

I have never thought about this one, but we can often simply tack two words together to convey the meaning "the x of the y". Some examples "car door" "kitchen light", "chair leg". And "book cover" can also work like this. But when we try to use them in certain sentences, they sound rather absurd: "...