Search found 7532 matches

by Erik_Kowal
Wed Oct 04, 2017 2:24 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Beer
Replies: 6
Views: 334

Re: Beer

Maybe the people who set up the Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA) wanted an acronym that sounded snappy.
by Erik_Kowal
Wed Oct 04, 2017 2:56 am
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Chump change
Replies: 6
Views: 281

Re: Chump change

You're very welcome, Bonnie. :)
by Erik_Kowal
Tue Oct 03, 2017 12:21 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Chump change
Replies: 6
Views: 281

Re: Chump change

It can be coins or bills/banknotes, or a mixture of both, or neither. The amount that qualifies as chump change varies according to the situation: for instance, in the context of the October 1, 2017—September 30, 2018 U.S. military budget of $824.6 billion, an expenditure of (say) $1.3 million could...
by Erik_Kowal
Mon Oct 02, 2017 10:05 pm
Forum: Word Origins and Meanings
Topic: Sea change
Replies: 5
Views: 376

Re: Sea change

The etymologist Michael Quinion has covered this idiom , as follows: Q. From Dave Donnelly in Hawaii: The phrase sea change appears frequently in both books and newspapers, and the only definition I’ve been able to find for it is that it is a transformation. How did the phrase come about and why? A....
by Erik_Kowal
Sun Oct 01, 2017 7:07 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Appetite
Replies: 3
Views: 205

Re: Appetite

In this context, it doesn't necessarily mean that the speaker is no longer hungry (although it might mean that as well). It's an indirect way of saying that the atmosphere of the occasion has now become too unpleasant for her to stay in the room.
by Erik_Kowal
Fri Sep 29, 2017 4:42 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Dating
Replies: 3
Views: 164

Re: Dating

The terms that immediately spring to my mind are toy boy (British) and boy toy (U.S.).
by Erik_Kowal
Fri Sep 29, 2017 1:25 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: one/it
Replies: 4
Views: 189

Re: one/it

Your question about 2a) cannot be answered without some context pertaining to the query sentence. They may or may not have nominated the album they want: it is impossible to tell from the sentence alone. We would need some related textual or conversational clues to be sure. If they have specified wh...
by Erik_Kowal
Thu Sep 28, 2017 12:31 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: one/it
Replies: 4
Views: 189

Re: one/it

Because you used the term "a computer" rather than "the computer", neither of your query sentences specifies a particular computer. The sentences are thus interchangeable in terms of their meaning. Note that you cannot modify 1) with "the computer" without significantly changing the meaning: "They w...
by Erik_Kowal
Wed Sep 27, 2017 9:06 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Cars
Replies: 5
Views: 230

Re: Cars

The (US-based) Kelley Blue Book description of the various types of sunroof can be found here: https://www.kbb.com/what-is/moon-roof/ Among other things, it includes a brief history of the term 'moonroof': The first moonroof was introduced on the Lincoln Continental Mark IV luxury car in 1973. The t...
by Erik_Kowal
Tue Sep 26, 2017 12:32 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: didn't shout at him to scare him
Replies: 1
Views: 139

Re: didn't shout at him to scare him

Those all seem fine to me.

Consider also:

"I didn't shout at him [ in order] to make him scared", and

"I didn't shout at him [ in order] to frighten him".
by Erik_Kowal
Tue Sep 26, 2017 2:51 am
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Wallpapers
Replies: 3
Views: 171

Re: Wallpapers

What Trolley said.

Alternatively, you could describe the women as "purely decorative" if they are there only to make the cars look more appealing.
by Erik_Kowal
Fri Sep 22, 2017 3:17 am
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: A title on a ship
Replies: 7
Views: 348

Re: A title on a ship

I spent a lot of my early working years in shipping, twenty-eight of them actually, and I give you a mnemonic uttered with horrible regularity by the Chief Docks Foreman at Swansea Docks, "A boat goes on the boat-deck, a ship goes on the sea". There are numerous exceptions to the foreman's 'rule' a...
by Erik_Kowal
Thu Sep 21, 2017 2:03 pm
Forum: No, wait. Don't tell me
Topic: Semi-aquatics
Replies: 2
Views: 236

Re: Semi-aquatics

Mrs Gingrich has stated, "When he was small, my Newt went to a minuscule".
by Erik_Kowal
Wed Sep 20, 2017 2:17 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Be seeing you
Replies: 2
Views: 134

Re: Be seeing you

Both meanings can be correct, depending on the nature of the relationship between the people concerned. Conventional greetings are so-called phatic expressions, which Wikipedia defines as "communication which serves a social function such as small talk and social pleasantries that don't seek or offe...
by Erik_Kowal
Wed Sep 20, 2017 2:45 am
Forum: Oh, and have you read...?
Topic: Is the sky really blue? Some hunter-gatherers don’t describe colors the same way most people do
Replies: 3
Views: 258

Is the sky really blue? Some hunter-gatherers don’t describe colors the same way most people do

I decided that it would be almost impossible to present the most salient information from this very interesting new article published by Science without posting pretty much the entire piece. So I've restricted myself to just the opening paragraph: "Ask almost any child in the developed world what co...