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A Moniker for Your Monitor

Greetings, oh esteemed listeners. This is another newsletter from A Way with Words.

On the air this past weekend, we talked a bit about giving nicknames to inanimate objects, druthers, Hispanic vs. Latino, stingaree, and people who can't quite ever say goodbye.


This morning we also posted the online-only minicast about Collins and its claim that it's going to take some of the very rare words out of its dictionaries. Listen:


If you're in New York City this week, think about dropping by a presentation at the New York Public Library on 42nd Street on Thursday. Roy Blount Jr. (a frequent panelist on "Wait, Wait Don't Tell Me") will talk about his new book, "Words: Their Roots, Bones, Innards, Piths, Pips, and Secret Parts." Tickets are free if you use the word "BLOUNT" when you register online. Otherwise, they're $15.

Information and a ticket link here:


Recent stories worthy of your attention:

Rwanda drops French as an official language and adopts English instead:


The Arapaho nation tries a last-minute intervention to make sure that the last 200 Arapaho-speakers can successfully pass along the Native American language to young members of the tribe:


"Fail" has arisen as a brief, one-word interjection used to state a simple opinion. It's a noun, too, even though English already has the noun "failure."


James W. Pennebaker's interest in word counting began more than 20 years ago, when he did several studies suggesting that people who talked about traumatic experiences tended to be physically healthier than those who kept such experiences secret. He wondered how much could be learned by looking at every single word people used — even the tiny ones, the I's and you's, a's and the's.


That's all, folks!

Martha Barnette and Grant Barrett

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