ELT   Mon Jun 25, 2007 6:17 am GMT
1. What's the diff between air and wind, if there is any?

2. what does "rugs pulling" mean?

3. what does "to take something at face value" means?

Thanks a bunch.
Non-meteorologist   Tue Jun 26, 2007 10:36 am GMT
Isn't wind just air that's moving?
furrykef   Wed Jun 27, 2007 12:51 am GMT
1. "Wind" refers to the natural motion of air, whereas "air" by itself is not necessarily implied to be in that sort of motion. For example, if you're carrying a stack of papers, it is the "wind" rather than the "air" that might carry them away, forcing you to chase after them.

2. I don't know. Can you give me the context?

3. It's a metaphor: the "face value" of a piece of money is the amount that's printed on it (on its "face"). How it's used as a metaphor is trickier to explain. If you take a situation at face value, you are assuming that the situation is exactly as it seems to be, just as you would normally assume that a coin is worth the amount that it says it is. But usually the expression as a metaphor is used when there is reason to doubt the "face value" explanation, but that reason may not necessarily be a strong one. For example, if a husband comes home late and he says his car broke down, his wife might take the situation at face value -- she assumes the car really did break down -- or she might be suspicious and assume that he was doing something he wasn't supposed to do. I'm not sure this is a great example, but you can probably understand the basic idea.

- Kef
ELT   Wed Jun 27, 2007 8:18 am GMT
Kef, great explanation! Well done!
"rugs pulling"probably means that when people are tensed and excited because they are watching a suspense or thriller movie on their TV sets. I guessed its meaning from context.
Nail-biting is a similar expression.
Tomm   Wed Jun 27, 2007 9:30 am GMT
<<"Wind" refers to the natural motion of air, whereas "air" by itself is not necessarily implied to be in that sort of motion.>>

But wind can be created artificially.
Guest   Wed Jun 27, 2007 9:37 am GMT
Maybe this:

pull the rug from under sb's feet
to suddenly take away help or support from someone, or to suddenly do something which causes many problems for them
furrykef   Wed Jun 27, 2007 10:00 am GMT
<< But wind can be created artificially. >>

It can, yes. In the case of a fan, though, I myself would normally speak of the "air" from the fan rather than the "wind", although it could also be called "wind". I'm sure other speakers refer to it as "wind". One also speaks of a "wind tunnel", a device used in scientific and commercial research that creates artificial wind. Out of context, though, it generally refers to the natural phenomenon.

On the other hand, if I'm in a car traveling at a high speed and I open a window, I would refer to what I feel as "wind", even though it's actually not the motion of the air itself but the motion of the car that creates it, probably because it isn't as obvious that the phenomenon is artificial.

- Kef