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Hi,

Could you please check for me regarding these word choices


I tried to stifle / smother / choke the flames. (Three of these words are correct and common in here?)

The smoke stifled / smothered / choked me, I couldn't talk for a while.

I can hear the metallic grinding / grating from the engine. (Both of these words are correct?)

I am suspicious / leery about that plan. (Both of these words are correct?)


Cheers

+1
John AkiI tried to stifle / smother / choke the flames. (Three of these words are correct and common in here?)

We most often say I tried to put out the fire.

smother the flames is good.
stifle the flames is also OK, but it's used even less than smother the flames.
choke the flames is even more rare.

They all mean the same thing.

John AkiThe smoke stifled / smothered / choked me, so I couldn't talk for a while.

Here choked is the best choice. The others are possible, but used less in this context.

John AkiI can hear the metallic grinding / grating from the engine. (Both of these words are correct?)

Here grinding is better, but grating is not wrong.

John AkiI am suspicious / leery about that plan. (Both of these words are correct?)

Yes, both are correct. The register is different. suspicious is in a higher register than leery. I would not use leery in academic writing.

CJ

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Thank you Mr CJ,

Would you please comment these sentences for me in this thread?


The secret was discovered accidentally / incidentally. (Both of them are correct, depending on if it was "unintended" or "intended"?)

The issue was bought up in the meeting accidentally / incidentally. (Same above)

This is my incidental bonus. (Additional, not regular)

I have to go, incidentally / in addition / but I will be back tomorrow if you still need me. (Which one sounds better to you or you might have a better word please?)


I keep tallying / counting people coming in and out. (Both of them are common?)

This question or his action really baffled me. (Means, can't understand, do you actually use this word in your life?)

I am baffled about this question or his behavior.


Thanks in advance

John Aki

John Aki

The secret was discovered accidentally / incidentally. (Both of them are correct, depending on if it was "unintended" or "intended"?)

The issue was brought up in the meeting accidentally / incidentally. (Same above)

"accidentally" does mean "unintentionally", but I think you may have misunderstood the meaning of "incidentally".


Ninety-nine percent of the time "incidentally" is used as we use "by the way" at the beginning of a sentence. It's a way of changing the topic of conversation to add another piece of information.

[Incidentally, / By the way,] Imran was a Shia, and hence a minority often targeted in Pakistan.
[Incidentally, / By the way,] have you considered very carefully that your husband may be right?
[Incidentally, / By the way,] the washing machine that came with our house was a Maytag Neptune.


Only in a much smaller number of cases do we use "incidentally" in a different way, and then it means "not on purpose" or "by chance" or "in a secondary way".

The goal of the policy was only incidentally to sell more cars.
(The goal of the policy was not primarily to sell more cars.)

Mr. Jaruk suggests that area bombing damaged civilian targets almost incidentally.
(The damage to civilian targets came about almost by chance. It was not the primary goal of the bombing.)

Religion doesn't come into the Sally Lockhart books at all, except incidentally.
(The topic of religion is not discussed in her books except by chance, as a secondary topic.)


John AkiI have to go, incidentally / in addition / but I will be back tomorrow if you still need me. (Which one sounds better to you or you might have a better word please?)

[Incidentally, By the way,] I have to go, but I'll be back tomorrow if you still need me.

John AkiThis is my incidental bonus. (Additional, not regular)

Yes. An incidental bonus is something good that happens, usually unexpectedly. It's "off to the side", not part of normal, expected procedures. It can be money, but it can also be something else:

Conditions such as alcohol dependence may be helped by relaxation therapy. However, this use is insufficiently proven, being an incidental bonus noted during the treatment of anxious patients.


I'll answer the rest of your questions in a separate post.

CJ

Thanks,

After though, maybe these two words "perplex / puzzle" are used more popular?


This question or his action really baffled / perplexed / puzzled me.

I am baffled / perplexed / puzzled about this question or his behavior.


Cheers

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John AkiI keep tallying / counting people coming in and out. (Both of them are common?)

"counting" is much more common that "tallying".

John Aki

This question or his action really baffled me. (Means, can't understand, do you actually use this word in your life?)

I am baffled about this question or his behavior.

I don't use "baffled" much at all. Once every ten years. Emotion: smile

It looks like the underlined sections are all part of the same sentence, but I don't think you intended that.

Please write separate sentences so we know that you don't intend to say all of that in one sentence:

This question really baffled me.
His action really baffled me.
I am baffled about this question.
I am baffled about his behavior.

Of course you can also write them my favorite way:

[This question / His action] really baffled me.
I am baffled about [this question / his behavior].

The most used word for this is "puzzled". Use "puzzled" in everyday situations. (I do.) "baffled" is a very exaggerated form of "puzzled".


Incidentally, Emotion: wink we would say "His actions really baffled me" or "What he did really baffled me". And in everyday conversation we would use "puzzled" instead of "baffled", as I mentioned above.

CJ

John Akiperplexed

Emotion: surprise Emotion: surprise Emotion: surprise Emotion: no

John Akibaffled

Emotion: surprise Emotion: shake

John Akipuzzled

Emotion: nodding Emotion: yes

I listed them above in order of register and frequency of use.

Highest register (lowest frequency) first.
Lowest register (highest frequency) last.
In other words, most popular last.

CJ

Thank you Mr CJ,

Much appreciated~


John Aki

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