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48 votes
Accepted

What is the meaning of "dog-food" here?

The original phrase was "to eat your own dog food", with the meaning of "to use your own products (no matter how bad they might be) because it will help better the company or product ...
davewp's user avatar
  • 621
41 votes
Accepted

in/at one fell swoop(=at one time) What's fell here?

"Fell" is an adjective and not related to the verbs "fell" or "fall" It means "strong and cruel". It is rare in this sense, except in the expression "one ...
James K's user avatar
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31 votes

Is it ok to say "When we would go to a restaurant ......." instead of "When we went to a restaurant, ....."?

'Would go' suggests a pattern, a habit, or multiple visits over a past period, for example: We would go to France every year. You can use 'went' to mean multiple occasions, but it can mean just one ...
Astralbee's user avatar
  • 103k
20 votes

Is "butter on toast" an idiom in English

I found an answer on brainly.in that describes it as: Usually a bully is arrogant and dominating. The poet wishes that if a bully could become softer and more compatible with others, just as butter ...
Smith's user avatar
  • 256
17 votes
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What does "put mileage on somebody" mean?

I take it that she means that the man would 'use' a woman in the same way a person would use a second-hand car; drive it around for a certain time, adding to the wear and tear on it, then seek to pass ...
Kate Bunting's user avatar
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17 votes
Accepted

Meaning of "You're one rib short of a barbecue"

To be short of an amount of something is to have less than that amount. E.g. if I am ten cents short of the dollar I need for something, I have 90 cents. To say that someone is [one thing] or [a few ...
Michael Harvey's user avatar
17 votes
Accepted

Workplace idiom for "bei Gelegenheit" - order to do eventually, but do not provide priority

Some options: At your convenience. Note: In contrast, "at your earliest convenience" means you need it fast When you can No rush. Note: informal Examples: No rush, you can fill out that ...
Laurel's user avatar
  • 15.6k
15 votes

What is the meaning of "dog-food" here?

First “dog food” has become an idiom, which means “use your own product”. This is not about using a pre-release version of your product, but using your product at all. Note that this only applies to ...
jmoreno's user avatar
  • 1,220
11 votes

What does it mean to you: 'Launched into a Roll'?

She started rolling. She rolled across the hallway swiftly. To launch into something means to suddenly start doing it, usually energetically or enthusiastically. In gymnastics, there is a move called ...
Andrew Tobilko's user avatar
10 votes
Accepted

What does 'Gulpin gargoyles' mean?

"Gulpin' gargoyles" is an interjection that the author invented. It's equivalent to saying, "For Christ's sake" or "My god". This type of interjection always comes at the ...
gotube's user avatar
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10 votes
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“What we have here is a truly encouraging sign of what pop could once again become …”

I wouldn't say it means "There is". "There is" only means that something exists somewhere. It doesn't give it a location. I would say "What we have here..." means ...
gotube's user avatar
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10 votes

"As many as 100.000 nurses" vs "Around/about/almost/nearly 100.000 nurses"? Are they the same?

Literally, "as many as 100,000 nurses" means "up to 100,000 nurses", not "almost/nearly/around/about". In a news story, "as many as" is typically weasel words ...
gotube's user avatar
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9 votes
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(How) can I say 'state of the [non-art]'?

The "idiom" you may be thinking of is "State of the Union", an address given by the President of the USA to Congress each year. Many other uses of the phrase consciously or ...
James K's user avatar
  • 223k
8 votes

What is the meaning of "dog-food" here?

There is an idiom among programmers "eat the dog food". It means that you are using the software that you are developing as part of your normal suite of programmes used to develop software. ...
James K's user avatar
  • 223k
8 votes
Accepted

An idiom for "making one's final / last attempt / effort"

If the intention is to encourage the person to keep persevering until the job is finished, I would choose make a final push. Make a last-ditch effort implies that the person has been failing up to now ...
Kate Bunting's user avatar
  • 55.6k
7 votes

Is "butter on toast" an idiom in English

There is an idiom "to butter someone up" to please someone, so that that person will do what you want them to do. The metaphor is that putting butter on something makes it less dry and ...
James K's user avatar
  • 223k
7 votes
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What does 'to come over one's hoot' mean?

I'm British, and I believe I have an ear for UK regional dialects, and I had never heard 'hoot' used in this way. I was ready to declare this, and be done, but a little imp said 'Google hoot speaker ...
Michael Harvey's user avatar
7 votes
Accepted

Can we use the verb 'hath' in modern English?

No. Hath is archaic and is not used in current spoken or written English, unless you are deliberately trying to sound very old-fashioned (as in, 400 years out-of-date).
randomhead's user avatar
  • 21.1k
7 votes

“What we have here is a truly encouraging sign of what pop could once again become …”

"There is" would suggest a distant relationship between the speaker and the concept. By using "What we have here..." the speaker emphasises their connection to the notion of "...
James K's user avatar
  • 223k
7 votes
Accepted

I'd sooner starve than eat that disgusting food. (sooner or rather)

They are two very different words, but in this context, they both amount to the same thing. I'd sooner starve - I am going to starve before I eat disgusting food. I'd rather starve - I would prefer ...
LeLetter's user avatar
  • 195
7 votes

to paint someone (other than oneself) "into a corner"

You can only paint someone else into a corner if they're holding your paint pot ;) To paint yourself into a corner is to, by your own action, make it impossible to get out of a difficult situation, ...
DoneWithThis.'s user avatar
6 votes
Accepted

"Back in the day" vs "back in the days"

Good question. Fascinating NGram supporting Kate's comment about back in the day being a recent development. Google Ngram Back in The Day vs Back in the Days To some extent your sentences are not ...
EllieK's user avatar
  • 9,202
6 votes

What is the meaning of "dog-food" here?

I always thought the term originated with a dog-food company whose manager advertised that its product was so good, he ate it himself. But there's a bit of a connotation that people in the company ...
Michael Kay's user avatar
  • 1,387
6 votes

Is "You don't half sound confident" a positive or negative?

Oxford Languages gives as its first definition: INFORMAL not at all; in no way. "the players are not half bad". In this sense it means 'much less than half'. The more common British usage is ...
Kate Bunting's user avatar
  • 55.6k
5 votes

Is "butter on toast" an idiom in English

There is no idiom butter on toast, but there is the established phrase in Britan hot buttered toast, which I think the poem riffs on. The post is still, I think, the most common term in Britain for ...
Colin Fine's user avatar
  • 75.8k
5 votes
Accepted

What does it mean to you: 'Launched into a Roll'?

Merriam-Webster gives the following definition of 'launch'. 1a: to throw forward : HURL. launched an arrow at a target In your quoted text, Corazon is launching their body, moving quickly like a ...
knol's user avatar
  • 66
5 votes

"It rings engaged" OR "It rings busy"

Neither. "The line is engaged" (British) or "busy" (American). If it rings, then it is not engaged.
James K's user avatar
  • 223k
4 votes
Accepted

What does the idiom 'to give someone away' mean in A Guide to Second Date Sex?

Yes, there are two meanings to 'give away' To [often unintentionally] reveal a secret; any secret, not just identity. The 'give away' can be a tell-tale sign, or an inadvertent statement. My orange ...
DoneWithThis.'s user avatar
4 votes
Accepted

Idiom: use of "all things X"

The phrase "all things electronic" functions like a noun. So consider Do you have a question cats? Do you have a question on cats? Do you have a question on cats related? I'd say the ...
James K's user avatar
  • 223k
4 votes
Accepted

put pen to paper

To "put pen to paper" simply means "to start writing", but the context describes what they are writing. In this context, we see that "parts of the deal have been inked ...
Richard Winters's user avatar

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