Last week we brought you coverage of the 35th American Crossword Puzzle Tournament, held in Brooklyn. But there was another wordy competition held in conjuction with the ACPT: the first-ever World Palindrome Championship. Here's a full report of the back-and-forth action from The Palindromist Magazine.
Sunday, at long last, marks the return of the acclaimed television series "Mad Men." We're big fans of the show, but we also enjoy nitpicking about it. Read Ben Zimmer's Word Routes column about an anachronistic dictionary prop here
, and about the historical accuracy of the dialogue here
March 4th was National Grammar Day, and one of the events held to celebrate the occasion was a Grammar Haiku Contest, overseen by editor Mark Allen. Language lovers were asked to post grammar- or usage-based haikus on Twitter, and nearly 200 entries were submitted. Herewith, from Allen's blog, the winning haiku and the runners-up, as determined by a distinguished panel of judges.
Today is Dr. Seuss's birthday, celebrated in the United States as Read Across America Day. Seuss contributed many linguistic inventions, but was "nerd" one of them? Ben Zimmer investigated whether we owe Dr. Seuss a debt of gratitude for this word in a column for the Boston Globe
and a Word Routes
followup. Check 'em out, word nerds.
As he did last year
, editor Mark Allen is hosting a haiku-writing contest in honor of National Grammar Day
on March 4th. Submit your grammar-related haiku by posting it to Twitter with the hashtag #GrammarDay
. Deadline is 10 p.m. on March 3rd! Details here
Mike Vuolo, a producer for the NPR show "On the Media," has started a new podcast about language called "Lexicon Valley." For his first installment, he chats with OTM host Bob Garfield about the history of the curious "rule" against ending a sentence in a preposition. Slate is hosting the podcast, which you can listen to here
The Dictionary of American Regional English (a.k.a. DARE) is finally completed — and it only took fifty years to do it! In the Boston Globe, Visual Thesaurus editor Ben Zimmer looks back on this monument to American speech, and looks ahead to new ways of approaching dialectology. Read his column here