9 10 11 12 13 Displaying 71-77 of 367 Articles

Spring has sprung, and we have some seasonally appropriate wordplay in this month's puzzle. Figure it out and you could win a Visual Thesaurus T-shirt!  Continue reading...
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Blog Excerpts

Gosh-All-Potomac! 10 Great Minced Oaths

"Minced oaths," Arika Okrent of Mental Floss reminds us, are "creative substitutions" of taboo expressions, and English used to be full of them. Okrent lists ten entertaining ones, including "G. Rover Cripes!" and "Gosh-All-Potomac!" See the whole list here.
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The NCAA College Basketball Tournament, nicknamed "March Madness," is in full swing again, and some early-round upsets have spelled bad news for those betting on chalk, meaning the favorites in the tournament. How did the term chalk come to be associated with teams favored by oddsmakers? A Word Routes column by Ben Zimmer has the answer.  Continue reading...
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Blog Excerpts

Obsolete Words Worth Reviving?

Some words that have fallen into disuse are due for a revival. Recently, the blog Jezebel compiled "18 uncommon or obsolete words that we think may have died early," including curglaff ("the shock felt in bathing when one first plunges into the cold water") and resistentialism (the seemingly spiteful behavior shown by inanimate objects). Check out the complete list here.
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For those who like their wordplay competitive, this weekend featured two high-stakes contests: the American Crossword Puzzle Tournament and the first-ever Symmys Awards for the year's best palindromes. The top contenders at the ACPT were the same names that have dominated the crossword world for the past few years, while the surprise overall winner of the Symmys was a palindromic novice.  Continue reading...
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This weekend, it's time once again for the best crossword solvers to gather in Brooklyn for the American Crossword Puzzle Tournament. Meanwhile, in Portland, Oregon, another kind of wordy celebration is going on, as the winners will be announced in the first annual Symmys Awards, given to the best palindromes of the year.  Continue reading...
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I've gone theme-happy with this column in recent months, looking at euphemisms for death, pregnancy, 30 Rock, and angels. Enough cohesion! It's time for a random roundup of terms that have crossed my eye, brightened my day, and befuddled my brain.  Continue reading...
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9 10 11 12 13 Displaying 71-77 of 367 Articles