We are now far beyond the day when a product might be distinguished from its competitors with descriptors such as mild, strong, or rich. Lately I'm noticing what is surely a very common trope in consumer marketing: the enhancement of an adjectival descriptor for a product by introducing it with an adverbial.  Continue reading...
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For a while, the trendy prefixes i- and e- may have been flashy signposts for this new era, but go communicates what they couldn't: urgency, energy, and, most of all, mobility.  Continue reading...
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One variant of the perfect euphemism combines optimism and nonsense in a sandwich of slop. Speaking of slop, my euphemism mop wiped up the following terms from the drippy drivel of 2018. Enjoy and employ these terms, but keep a twaddle towel handy.  Continue reading...
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English loves its o-ending words with a curious fervor, considering how seldom they occur naturally in our mother tongue. For centuries, we've made up for that lack by importing or coining words that end in o.  Continue reading...
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At the end of each year, while linguists and lexicographers cast votes for words of the year, I'm compiling a different list: the brand names that distilled the mood of the previous twelve months. To narrow the field, I add another criterion: the brand names must be linguistically notable.  Continue reading...
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In many areas of business and personal life, failure is being redefined as either a challenge that can be overcome with the right coaching or attitude – or, at the extreme, as a source of pride. What's behind this upbeat sense of what it means to fail?  Continue reading...
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