3 4 5 6 7 Displaying 29-35 of 547 Articles

A "bear market" is one where stock prices fall, and a "bull market" is one where prices rise. But why do financial folks talk about "bears" and "bulls"? The public radio show Marketplace looked into various origin stories and called on our own Ben Zimmer to explain the history.  Continue reading...
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Sometimes, a photo "ekes out of the printer." Other times, electronics help "to eke out extra mileage" in cars. And in a more familiar usage, a movie "shows how a once-budding folk singer tries to eke out a living." It's no wonder, then, that most people think "eke out" means to achieve something through effort, to barely get by.  Continue reading...
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Today is the federal observation of George Washington's birthday, also called Presidents' Day. Five years ago, an unfortunate typo was discovered in a quotation from Washington chiseled on the front of the New York State Supreme Courthouse. That typo still lingers today.  Continue reading...
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Online dating sites love to use Valentine's Day as an opportunity to talk about how people size up their potential romantic interests. And it turns out that an attention to grammar, particularly usage of the word "whom," just might help out men who would like to attract members of the opposite sex.  Continue reading...
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Last summer I wrote a lot about zombie rules, usage rules that really aren't rules but that we teach, follow, and pass along with little thought anyway. I have two more zombies to share with you, about using the verbs curate and reveal.  Continue reading...
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Welcome to another roundup of the euphemisms — new and old, fresh and stale, sweet and salty — that have lately come to my attention. I hope they tickle your funny bone and baffle your think bone.  Continue reading...
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Language writer Jen Doll takes on the phenomenon of linguistic "peeving" for the Atlantic and collects a list of "classics." See any you recognize?  Continue reading...
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3 4 5 6 7 Displaying 29-35 of 547 Articles