9 votes
Accepted

What does wicky mean in the phrase 'wicky wacky day'?

It's a kind of reduplication. It has no meaning in itself; it's sound-play that only serves to intensify, to make it wackier. Why "wicky"? This is a vowel-shift reduplication, and many of ...
Luke Sawczak's user avatar
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9 votes

What words of endearment may I use for describing a misbehaving child?

This is enormously family dependent, and rapidly changing. Words like "scamp" or "rapscallion" or "scalliwag" now seem rather dated. "Cheeky monkey" seemed ...
James K's user avatar
  • 218k
9 votes

She got her bag caught vs. She had her bag caught

In American English there's a subtle difference: Subway Policeman: Why do you have this woman's purse and why is she lying unconscious on the floor of the subway car? Male Passenger: She had her bag ...
TimR's user avatar
  • 124k
6 votes

She got her bag caught vs. She had her bag caught

I would certainly use get [something] caught to describe an accidental occurrence; as Stuart says, have it caught sounds as though she deliberately caused it to become trapped. However, I think have ...
Kate Bunting's user avatar
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5 votes
Accepted

What does "little" mean here?

'Little' is a diminutive term, and is sometimes used informally in terms of endearment, like "my little honey bunch" or "he's a little hottie!". It doesn't literally mean "...
Astralbee's user avatar
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5 votes
Accepted

Another view of since

You don't say where you found the 'explanation', but it isn't a very good one. It is five years since I had my accident uses the simple past tense to refer to a single event that happened five years ...
Kate Bunting's user avatar
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3 votes

What words of endearment may I use for describing a misbehaving child?

Out of those rascal is common enough to be understood (if still a little old-fashioned) and the most likely to be affectionate out of context. Most of those words are usually used to refer to adults ...
Maciej Stachowski's user avatar
3 votes
Accepted

meaning of "provision" here

The second, although in this case it's not so much a condition as a specific item in a legal document.
SoronelHaetir's user avatar
3 votes
Accepted

Is 'in the same way' redundant '...in the same way as...'?

It's true that including in the same way (often, in such contexts, in exactly the same way) doesn't significantly alter the basic meaning. But it provides emphasis, which when used appropriately is an ...
FumbleFingers's user avatar
3 votes
Accepted

Clearing present simple and present perfect with since

To lift an explanation directly from Oxford dictionary, 'since' means "in the intervening period between the time mentioned and the time under consideration, typically the present". So there ...
Astralbee's user avatar
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2 votes

What words of endearment may I use for describing a misbehaving child?

Some possibilities would be "scamp" or "terror". Note, phrases like this would usually be used as an exclamation, rather than as full sentences: You little scamp! You terror!
Daniel Roseman's user avatar
2 votes
Accepted

What does "so I'm not" mean?

The key part of the sentence is "I'm not understanding", which means the same as "I do not understand". Bella is saying the because Duncan can also do the same as was done to Bella ...
DJClayworth's user avatar
  • 4,490
2 votes
Accepted

What does "pastels and plastics of Los Angeles" mean?

Pastels are a color scheme: Barbieland, in the movie, is distinctively colorful. Pastels also have the connotation of being emotionally positive, in a way. “Leaving behind the pastels of Barbieland” ...
Julius Hamilton's user avatar
2 votes
Accepted

Is the word "you" used as generic "you" here?

It's somewhat ambiguous. Ruth is a ghost who, as a living human, made up Barbie and then died. So she is talking about herself. But she's also talking about humanity as a whole. The things that humans ...
Borgh's user avatar
  • 1,890
2 votes
Accepted

What does "keep it singing" mean?

Answer deleted by me because I didn't realize you can't actually delete accepted answers. Apologies to all.
Lambie's user avatar
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2 votes

She got her bag caught vs. She had her bag caught

For the most part, the two forms mean the same thing, especially in the context given. And they are both a bit ambiguous, too: they could imply that the subject intended for her bag to become stuck, ...
John Bollinger's user avatar
1 vote

What words of endearment may I use for describing a misbehaving child?

A pretty non offensive, endearing way to refer to a misbehaving child is to replace their name with 'Trouble'. You can also use it when they are not misbehaving at the moment but often tend to.
Judith Jones's user avatar
1 vote

What words of endearment may I use for describing a misbehaving child?

I used to read and hear imp, it sounds almost cute but perhaps it's not so common nowadays. She's [a bit of] an imp This tells the listener that the small child sometimes misbehaves. I believe ...
Mari-Lou A's user avatar
  • 27.1k
1 vote
Accepted

What does "running stuff" refer to?

“To run” something can mean to “manage” or “oversee”, like “running a company” (overseeing the company’s operations; being in charge); or even “running an errand” (doing a small task). Wiktionary, “...
Julius Hamilton's user avatar
1 vote
Accepted

Can 'of manuals' be fronted in '...the most conservative of manuals...'?

Yes, Of manuals, only the most conservative ... would be grammatical. It makes "manuals" the topic, and suggests that you are then going to talk about other kinds of writing, in contrast to ...
Colin Fine's user avatar
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1 vote

Can "sit" mean "receive no attention"?

Lots of great answers here, but they all focus on the sense of 'sitting' as something that's waiting to be acted on. This may be regional (I grew up in Michigan, USA), but I would also say something ...
Nate Anderson's user avatar
1 vote

Can "sit" mean "receive no attention"?

This use of "sit" is figurative, based on the metaphor of someone in the waiting room of an office. The person waiting will generally take a seat and just sit there idly until someone ...
Barmar's user avatar
  • 3,160

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