91

I am a native speaker with a careful ear. From my experience, I can tell you that when the millennium turned from 19xx to 20xx, we said "two thousand" plus the remainder throughout the aughts (01, 02, ..., 09). To use the "twenty" construction would have required acknowledging the zero digit: "twenty oh-eight, twenty-oh-nine" or "twenty-aught-seven" etc. ...


43

I have seen this written many times on bus timetables etc. and find no reason why someone wouldn't understand it. To be extra clear, I would make one amend:: The train departs at 16 minutes past every hour. Or even better The train departs at 16 minutes past the hour, every hour.


41

One of these days One of those days These are idioms. The former means sometime in the near future. So you can say "we really must visit them one of these days". The latter (one of those days) means a bad day; a day when everything goes wrong. I missed breakfast, got late to work, and got caught in the rain at lunchtime - it was one of those days!...


34

by is used to show the person or thing that does something. You can't really use by with a table in this sentence, because it's you that's doing something (kicking the table). You could use by about a table if, for example, it fell on you: He was killed by a table that fell from the roof garden of the hotel. onto is used to show movement into or on a ...


22

Both can be fine. While the first focuses more on the objective description of the weather, and the second focuses more on someone's subjective opinion of the weather, the answer can go either way, depending on how the listener chooses to interpret the question. Examples: James: What's the weather out there? Phil: It's miserable. James: No, I ...


22

Both are “haven’t seen” and “didn’t see” can be correct. I would use the first one (“haven’t seen”) if the letter is still unaccounted for. I would use the second one (“didn’t see”) if the letter was eventually found, but you are replying late because you hadn’t seen it as soon as expected. In your example, though, you’ve found the letter, so you ...


21

Which version to use? Neither! This is one of those contexts1 where most native speakers would feel they have to use the Past Perfect... Hi, I'm sorry, I hadn't seen your letter. I've just found it. How are you? Present Perfect (I haven't seen it) doesn't make sense here, because that always implies from the Past up to and including the Present. Which ...


18

Although saving face is an expression used in English, it is not commonly used with children. A common suggestion to the child would be Don't make a scene. Particularly in British English. The expression making a scene carries the meaning you require. An embarassing display in front of guests or the public.


18

You could say: When it started to rain, I was outdoors. or When it started to rain, I was (caught) outside. Outdoors is an adverb and means out of doors (not in the building), in the open air.


17

Seem used as a link verb can be followed by an adjective,to be +an adjective, You seem (to be )angry with something, noun phrases, She seems (to be) a nice girl. infinitives, They seem to have made a mistake. like, The village seems (like) a nice place for a holiday. that- and if-clauses. It seems as if the night is never going to end. ...


17

You can't easily establish how the year component of C21 dates is spoken by searching online, because hardly anyone would actually write, say, two thousand [and] sixteen or twenty sixteen. Note also that the [and] there is usually omitted by AmE speakers, and no-one includes it unless they explicitly articulated thousand (or nineteen hundred and sixteen for ...


17

They're both perfectly natural. Arguably some people might think the what version is more appropriate when the speaker is specifically interested in knowing what the weather actually is (or perhaps will be, later in the day). Conversely, the how version might be more likely if what the speaker wants to know is how the addressee feels about the weather. ...


17

Both are acceptable but mean slightly different things. "To make a space" implies that a specific open area is being made for a specific purpose or object in a particular location. "To make space" is more vague and relaxed and denotes the creation of more available space in general. In some cases one is more appropriate than the other, and in other cases ...


17

On I stubbed my toe on the table But I’m assuming it was the table leg? So if you want to be more specific: I stubbed my toe on the table leg


16

As a native American English speaker, both "two-thousand seventeen" and "twenty seventeen" are acceptable ways to say the year "2017". Generally, I consider "two-thousand seventeen" to be more formal and "twenty seventeen" to be more casual. As examples, you might hear "two-thousand seventeen" in a news broadcast, but use "twenty seventeen" in personal ...


15

TL/DR: Use "full name" in your case. Here's why: "Real name" (or "actual name") is a little strange if they know you personally in real life†. Does that mean that you've been letting them call you something that's not your real name? Best not to get into that. The only other exception to this would be if they've only recently been introduced to you by that ...


14

In U.S. English, the simplest way would be to ask What time does she get off work? A shade more formal would be What time does she usually leave work? or What time does she usually leave for the day? In the latter, the work context would be understood. Don't use it if there could be some confusion. Here's one way to ask involving the word stay: ...


13

Heir apparent here is a fixed phrase. It is a legal term and descends from the two or three centuries after the Norman Conquest when laws were written and legal proceedings conducted in a variety of French, which ordinarily postposes its adjectives. Heir apparent does not mean "seems/seemed to be the heir" but "is/was the heir". The heir apparent is the ...


13

If I wanted to warn my kids before guests arrive, I would say Please behave yourselves in front of the guests (later, today, this evening, etc). behave : to act in an acceptable way : to act properly


13

While you can do things with good manners, it is rare to direct someone to do so in imperatives. Unless addressing children, it is not required to remind people to be polite— a person with good upbringing has good manners out of habit; an poorly raised person cannot tell the difference, anyway. This may reflect a difference of cultural perception, but I ...


13

In Japan, there are many odd (and sometimes unintentionally hilarious) signs with translations of Japanese phrases into English. This is a good example, as "please smoke with good manners" is not at all idiomatic. A more idiomatic version might be: Please be considerate of others when smoking in the area surrounded by planters. or Please be ...


13

What alephzero said (in comment) is also true of US English: "every hour at 16 past the hour." From Merriam Webster dictionary Definition of past the hour used with a certain number of minutes to indicate how long after the beginning of an hour something will happen "Trains leave every hour at ten minutes past the hour." This is more ...


12

There are a lot of subtleties hidden in the different words and word orders mentioned here. Changing the place in the sentence of the word please changes its emphasis; roughly, the earlier the word comes in the sentence, the stronger the request for help. Notice RayB's point that putting please at the end of the sentence sounds more polite. This is ...


12

"Water me" sounds like you are asking someone to water you like a plant (you obviously don't want them to start spraying you haha). "Give me water" and "serve me with water" mean the same thing but they can be impolite because you are commanding someone to do something for you. If you are asking someone for water it would be better to say "May I have water?"...


12

In connection with bad weather, rain, snow, hail, etc, we can say we are, or were, "in the open" and this is understood to mean "not in a building".


11

On my polite-o-meter, the two sentences score very close: "Could you help me, please?", "Could you please help me?". The former sounds more formal. Use whichever one you want and you'll be more polite than most people. The following data is a very rough indication that "please-on-the-end" might be more common: 1 Google Search "Could you help me*...


11

I've actually profitably made heavy use of the phrase "friendly reminder" in email and text. As in: Friendly reminder: your appointment with me is at 4pm this afternoon. or Just a friendly reminder, your appointment with me is at 4pm this afternoon. The other thing you can do, which I also do, is to skip the preamble about how they might have ...


11

We are implying knowledge of a particular domain. More completely we might say According to my understanding of calculus while in principle we can use understandings as a plural, I've only ever seen it used in the sense of understanding meaning agreement between people. However I would not use according to my understanding here. We use according to ...


11

Yes, a slight difference, more in usage than in grammar terms. You cannot drink it alone. means wanting to drink with other people around. More common would be: You cannot drink alone. For example: (Someone walks into the bar and wants to join you, and insists) You cannot drink alone. as for You cannot drink it by yourself. means you need ...


10

The short answer. The two phrases are idioms. one of these days On some day in the future one of those days a day when everything goes wrong So if you want to visit them in the near future, but you're not sure when, then use I don't know exactly when we'll go but we really must visit them one of these days. The long answer. The two ...


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