Here's another newsletter from A Way with Words!
Who calls baby platypuses "puggles"? Who calls a playground slide a "sliding pond"? Who calls dust bunnies "slut's wool"? You can find out on the brand-new episode we aired this past weekend:
We've also posted the first in a series of minicasts talking about "word of the year" candidates. This first one covers the phrase "nuke the fridge," a mutant cross between Happy Days and Indiana Jones. Listen here:
We're still accepting your word of the year nominations. Send 'em on by email or post 'em here:
By the way, the American Name Society is accepting nominations for "name of the year," too. They can be personal names, place names, trade names, and fictional or literary names. They just have to have been common or prominent in 2008. Send them to Cleveland K. Evans at <firstname.lastname@example.org>. More information here:
In the news:
Boing Boing asks its readers--who respond numerously--what their generic name is for little groceries-and-sundries shops on street corners:
A look at expressions meaning "heavy rain":
Jan Freeman says there are some cases where extra verbal padding is necessary and should not be cut:
Collins announced that it was including "meh" in its dictionaries and there was a flurry of press, both negative and positive.
In the wake of it, Ben Zimmer of Visual Thesaurus arbitrates a dispute between two Philadelphian alt-weekly writers over the value of the word “meh,” which was recently added by Collins to one of its dictionaries.
Mark Peters comes out in support of "meh":
As this is the week of the American holiday Thanksgiving, we'd like to thank each of you, whether you listen over the air or by podcast, for your attention, your questions, your friendship, and your support. You mean a lot to us. With your help over the last year, we were able take the show independent and produce another season of programming.
If you would like to show your support in another way, please make a contribution to A Way with Words. Your donation will support basic, necessary costs without which we would be unable to do the show.
Best wishes to you and your family,
Martha Barnette and Grant Barrett