A high percentage of that malarkey consists of euphemisms, which is why we could probably develop fusion energy by harnessing the grave-spinning of George Orwell.  Continue reading...
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A craving for linguistic rationality – not to mention a fondness for wordplay – explains how acronyms begat backronyms.  Continue reading...
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London's colossal clog is a reminder of the history of berg and its parent word iceberg. With language, there's always a lot going on beneath the surface.  Continue reading...
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Are you so worried about global warming you can't carbon-restrain yourself? If so, you have a vocabulary term in common with Energy Secretary Rick Perry. This term, and the other euphemisms collected here, are real but insubstantial, like a vengeful ghost or stubborn denial of science.  Continue reading...
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One purpose of slang is to keep illegal doings off the radar of any noisy bystanders, especially cops. So even though slang and euphemisms tend to be on opposite ends of the honesty scale, they can both be used as cloaking devices.  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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Do you have a transfusion specialist? Transfusion specialist is a euphemism for blood boy: a young, healthy fella who the wealthy pay for their invigorating blood. This term comes from the land of fiction, but treating youthful blood as a fountain of youth is all-too-real. Whether you're young enough to sell your blood for a pretty penny or old enough to prey on the young like Nosferatu, I hope you can appreciate a heaping helping of hokum.  Continue reading...
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