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As a euphemism columnist, I admire the work of anyone who catches dodges, evasions, and Orwellian whoppers in their butterfly nets. So I was thrilled, during the Republican National Convention, to find The Week's list of ways the media didn't say veep candidate Paul Ryan was a liar.  Continue reading...

When it comes to the indelicate matter of pregnancy, English speakers are constantly coming up with creative circumlocutions for the condition of expecting women. In his latest monthly installment of under-the-radar euphemisms, Mark Peters takes a look at some of the more outrageous gestational obfuscations.  Continue reading...

When I'm looking for rare euphemisms to include in this column, I don't turn to drink, but I do turn to Drunk: The Definitive Drinker's Dictionary. Paul Dickson's amazing collection of 2,964 terms for being tipsy, lubricated, guzzled, or uncorked is a euphemism-palooza.  Continue reading...

I usually tiptoe away from the gruesome side of life, preferring to read about kittens and puppies playing peekaboo with babies and bunnies. I avoid horrific, soul-numbing, existentially meaningless stories about topics such as catastrophes and Kardashians. However, one such story — the Florida face-eater episode — had one redeeming feature: the spreading of bath salts as a Euphemism of the Year candidate.  Continue reading...

Do you prefer artisan malarkey, artisan-style poppycock, or artisanal mumbo-jumbo?

All three are readily available these days, as it seems every grocery-store aisle, bakery, coffee shop, and restaurant is selling artisan cheese, artisan sandwiches, or the bizarrely labeled artisan-style bread. Even Dunkin' Donuts is, preposterously, selling artisan bagels.  Continue reading...

I'm no peevologist. I will gladly begin a sentence with a conjunction and end it with a preposition. I love the word moist, and I couldn't care less about irregardless. I write about euphemisms because I love them, not because I want to see them wiped from the face of the Earth.  Continue reading...

One of the happiest occasions in dictionary and word-nerd history occurred recently when the Dictionary of American Regional English — a project five decades in the making — published its final volume. This historical dictionary of words and phrases that do not ring out from sea to shining sea is one of the most ambitious works of lexicography ever. To call it a wealth of lexical riches would be the understatement of the eon. It is a whoopensocker ("Something extraordinary of its kind").  Continue reading...

2 3 4 5 6 Displaying 22-28 of 70 Articles