13 posts tagged with wording.
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What is this grammatical thing called?

20ish years ago there was a one-page essay in the (maybe? Last page?) New Yorker that featured many uses of words that had no such root or form. I can't think of any specific words in the essay, but even what the words or practice are called and a list would be nice. Things like "rambunction" for rambunctious, or "consternating" for consternation. Is this mere coinage, or is there a wider practice at work? [more inside]
posted by nevercalm on Aug 29, 2016 - 12 answers

What's a cute phrase to indicate on my cat's tag that he is indoor-only?

My neighborhood has a lot of outdoor cats, so I would like to add something to my indoor cat's tag to indicate that if someone encounters him alone outdoors it means that he is, indeed, lost. I don't like "Oh no, I'm lost!" since it'll be mostly me or my guests that see the tag the majority of the time, when it's not applicable -- but the only alternative I've come up with is "indoor cat," which is lacking the cute factor. What are some options in the 28 character range? [more inside]
posted by Pwoink on Feb 3, 2016 - 30 answers

What's another word for "meaningless"?

I need a word (appropriate in a legal/business discussion) to define the following system: let's say a grocer's point of sale system produces a report, with one row per transaction, with a descriptor field showing "apple", "orange" etc. But now the grocer has introduced baskets so people can buy apples and oranges at the same time. The report doesn't know what to do so it just prints either "apple" or "orange". [more inside]
posted by acidic on Jan 12, 2016 - 43 answers

Words for service

I need ideas for how to word a brief inscription honoring someone's work of N duration, for X cause/ Y institution. Failing that, any ideas for compact inscription-y alternatives to the words "dedicated," "service," or both? [more inside]
posted by gallusgallus on Jun 28, 2015 - 10 answers

How can I decline this trip?

I just spent the weekend in Paris with a friend, which was... okay. It wasn't great. We have another trip planned in a month's time but haven't booked tickets yet. How can I weasel out of this without hurting my friend's feelings? [more inside]
posted by teststrip on Apr 20, 2015 - 18 answers

"The Chinese" or "Chinese people"? Confused about wording!

When referring to Chinese people, what is the correct wording to use? I'm writing a paper, and noticed a couple of times that I wrote "In this study, the Chinese..." which somehow rubbed me the wrong way (although I'm not sure why, maybe it's the definite article?!). So what should I write, "the Chinese," "Chinese people," or something else entirely?
posted by twill on Oct 7, 2014 - 17 answers

Is "matrimony" a religious term?

I've been asked by a friend of mine who is a marriage officiant to translate his marriage ceremony speech into English, and I have a question about wording. In a secular marriage, can you say "joined together in matrimony", or do you have to say "joined together in marriage"? [more inside]
posted by gkhan on Feb 9, 2014 - 7 answers

How to word a party invitation without sounding tacky?

My husband mentioned to me some years ago that he'd never had an actual, cake-and-candles, friends from the neighborhood invited, hats and horns birthday party in his entire life. I'd like to give him a small surprise birthday party for his upcoming birthday in late March, but I have questions about how to actually word the invitations. [more inside]
posted by Oriole Adams on Feb 26, 2013 - 14 answers

What's your theory on this term?

I'm trying to think of a word.... Is there a term for a 'theory' (in the scientific sense) that explains the majority of the data/observations, but is not fully complete? [more inside]
posted by mockjovial on Dec 14, 2012 - 14 answers

Web Server Wording

"Serving-out" a web-based GUI: more natural wording? [more inside]
posted by Paquda on Oct 25, 2012 - 10 answers

pretty PLEASE gimme the report on time

Please hope me! I need help wording a reminder for an official to give in a report on time. [more inside]
posted by mirileh on Oct 11, 2010 - 12 answers

Calling Ms Manners

We've eloped, everything is great! Except, of course, I forgot to figure out how to word the announcements and am now panicking! [more inside]
posted by cestmoi15 on Feb 16, 2009 - 18 answers

If she calls herself an actor, does she have some 'splainin' to do?

When did actresses start calling themselves actors? [more inside]
posted by Wild_Eep on Mar 5, 2006 - 37 answers

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