5 6 7 8 9 Displaying 43-49 of 74 Articles

The current love of my life is Green's Dictionary of Slang: an enormous, meticulous, ridiculously wonderful historical dictionary that's the biggest slang collection ever made (uncurated Wiki-crapola like Urban Dictionary doesn't count). Jonathon Green's slangapalooza is an extraordinary source for fulfilling this column's mission: finding under-the-radar euphemisms.  Continue reading...

Charlie Sheen's ongoing meltdown has been a godsend for the lexicon. (Read VT supreme commander Ben Zimmer, Slate's Christopher Beam, or me for more.) But what has he done for the wild world of euphemisms?  Continue reading...

What is it about the three-word phrase that lends itself so well to euphemisms?

From enhanced interrogation techniques to life problem issues, the three-word form is a red flag for a five-star euphemism. One that made headlines in January — marking our first candidate for Euphemism of the Year 2011 — was taco meat filling, a disturbing term/substance that Taco Bell confessed is the secret ingredient in their tacos and other "beef" products.  Continue reading...

In this special edition of Evasive Maneuvers, our euphemism-meister Mark Peters reviews a new book on verbal evasions, Euphemania: Our Love Affair with Euphemisms by Ralph Keyes. According to Keyes, euphemisms serve as "an excellent way to determine what we find embarrassing."  Continue reading...

The American Dialect Society’s annual meeting is coming up, and like all word nerds, I have Word of the Year fever. I won’t be in Pittsburgh for the meeting, but as the only euphemism columnist in this star quadrant, I want to make a case for euphemism of the year.  Continue reading...

Even the most kind and gentle soul can probably think of dozens of people to loathe, despise, disrespect, scorn, condemn, resent, pooh-pooh, or simply hold in contempt — the unkindest cuddle of all. But it’s difficult to discuss the objects of our hatred in language that captures the despicable-ness of the named while keeping the namer clean of the mud being slung.  Continue reading...

I looooooove staying at swanky hotels. I seldom have the cash to do so on my own, but one of my non-euphemism-related employers often puts me up at various Hyatts and Hiltons. Man, I love escaping my semi-squalid lifestyle while enjoying some HD TV, about 6 or 9 pillows, and the absolute joy of having a maid tuck in my blankie. Still, despite my good fortune, I've never been lucky enough to stay at a hotel with its own death ray.  Continue reading...

5 6 7 8 9 Displaying 43-49 of 74 Articles