Would you be intimidated if someone tried to rob you while wearing a balaclava? What about a ski mask? Trick question: they’re the same thing! The head covering recently made popular in the Pussy Riot protests is known as a balaclava. The name comes from the Port of Balaclava on the Black Sea, an important site in the Crimean War, and the headgear worn there to protect against the bitter cold. This is part of a complete episode.
- Coast is Clear 04/24/2017: In the military, if you've lost the bubble, then you can't find your bearings. The term first referred to calibrating the position of aircraft and... [more]
- Sweet Dreams 04/08/2017: In deafening workplaces, like sawmills and factories, workers develop their own elaborate sign language to discuss everything from how their weekend went to when the... [more]
- Gone to Seed 04/03/2017: This week on A Way with Words: Restaurant jargon, military slang, and modern Greek turns of phrase. • Some restaurants now advertise that they sell... [more]
- Why Don't We Pronounce the B in "Subtle"? 04/03/2017: Why don't we pronounce the letter b in the word subtle? The word derives ultimately from Latin subtilis, meaning "fine, delicate," and was adopted into... [more]
- Greek Expressions 04/03/2017: In English, the expression keep your eyes peeled means "pay close attention" or "be on the lookout." In modern Greek, the equivalent is ta matia... [more]