Search found 7852 matches

by Erik_Kowal
Fri May 06, 2005 8:56 am
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: suck it up
Replies: 3
Views: 5934

suck it up

To which I'll just add that I don't think this expression is in common use in Britain.
by Erik_Kowal
Thu May 05, 2005 8:04 pm
Forum: Word Origins and Meanings
Topic: crocodile tears / alligator tears??
Replies: 2
Views: 2575

crocodile tears / alligator tears??

If one chose the mock-terrapin soup from a false prospectus that also offered alligatawny, the experience would be truly ersatz... No, unreally!
by Erik_Kowal
Thu May 05, 2005 6:31 pm
Forum: Miscellaneous
Topic: Need Advice
Replies: 4
Views: 1726

Need Advice

Nina, I have a few comments about your form. Firstly, you have submitted this posting to four different forum areas of this site. This is not very considerate of our site visitors. Secondly, people would need to copy and paste your entire posting into theirs in order to give them a framework for the...
by Erik_Kowal
Thu May 05, 2005 6:19 pm
Forum: Word Origins and Meanings
Topic: to street
Replies: 8
Views: 1470

to street

As in:

Here's a well-USed lawyer for sale,
Thrash him uphill and whack him down Dale.

?
by Erik_Kowal
Thu May 05, 2005 11:05 am
Forum: Word Origins and Meanings
Topic: fanny packs
Replies: 12
Views: 3165

fanny packs

Hmm... Judging by William's and Gary's apparent nonplussedness, it is the Americans among us who don't know A from C!

Bob, a 'fanny pack' is what you might call a 'bum bag'.
by Erik_Kowal
Tue May 03, 2005 3:24 pm
Forum: Miscellaneous
Topic: Name of word puzzles?
Replies: 8
Views: 4140

Name of word puzzles?

Bob, you are quite right. My fault for not reading Lili's post carefully enough before responding; apologies all round.
by Erik_Kowal
Tue May 03, 2005 11:17 am
Forum: Word Origins and Meanings
Topic: full bore
Replies: 5
Views: 5758

full bore

Of course, car engines also have piston bores in their blocks. This strikes me as being intuitively a more likely automotive association than 'the full bore of the gas line' explanation, since a piston reciprocating back and forth in its engine block seems a much more powerful image than the notion ...
by Erik_Kowal
Tue May 03, 2005 11:12 am
Forum: Miscellaneous
Topic: Name of word puzzles?
Replies: 8
Views: 4140

Name of word puzzles?

These are called 'palindromes'. If you search for that word on this site, you will encounter quite a few postings devoted to them.
by Erik_Kowal
Tue May 03, 2005 6:53 am
Forum: Miscellaneous
Topic: Just joined site!
Replies: 14
Views: 2693

Just joined site!

Walter, perhaps what Hans meant was that this site has driven him towards other forms of addiction. Surgeons (and physicians) have good access to happy-making meds, you know! ;-)
by Erik_Kowal
Tue May 03, 2005 3:14 am
Forum: Word Origins and Meanings
Topic: same-store sales = comps
Replies: 5
Views: 1328

same-store sales = comps

What Ken is describing is simply a retail accounting method that excludes factors that can be predicted to produce anomalous revenue results; one such is the new store that will take some time to generate sales momentum, and which is therefore not included in the calculations. The financial results ...
by Erik_Kowal
Sun May 01, 2005 9:22 pm
Forum: Word Origins and Meanings
Topic: whole shebang
Replies: 2
Views: 2236

whole shebang

Ken, that was a most interesting excavation of the history of the word, even though nothing conclusive emerged.

When you started off your discussion with your account of the dark matter seminar, I also expected you to mention the "whole shebang" theory of the origin of the Universe...
by Erik_Kowal
Sat Apr 30, 2005 1:49 am
Forum: Miscellaneous
Topic: fruitless search
Replies: 7
Views: 2017

fruitless search

How appropriate to spend eternity looking for something in Time...
by Erik_Kowal
Fri Apr 29, 2005 10:36 am
Forum: Word Origins and Meanings
Topic: Heavens no vs Hell no
Replies: 7
Views: 3949

Heavens no vs Hell no

Maybe what phrase falls most readily from your lips depends on which part of Britain you're from. If I invoked any kind of hypothetical hangout of the gods to express disbelief or disagreement, it would probably be "Good Heavens no!" in preference to "Heavens no!" (I'm from the Thames Valley region,...
by Erik_Kowal
Thu Apr 28, 2005 9:45 pm
Forum: Miscellaneous
Topic: EU Language
Replies: 3
Views: 1737

EU Language

Hmm. I first saw this spoof in 1997, and it is still fairly funny. However, it is worth mentioning that German is not in fact one of the principal languages in which EU business is conducted, even though Germans might wish it otherwise. According to the abstract of an article by Paul Wood in the Aug...
by Erik_Kowal
Wed Apr 27, 2005 7:13 am
Forum: Word Origins and Meanings
Topic: New ROOTs?
Replies: 20
Views: 3750

New ROOTs?

Of course, the 1940 description makes it clear that the '-on' suffix in 'nylon' was not novel, and the selection of the 'nyl-' prefix was influenced by both 'no' and 'new', even if merely negatively. So one could still argue that the coinage 'nylon' is only novel up to a point.