The rarely used English noun list, meaning desire or craving, is entirely different from the word list that denotes a series of things. The little-used meaning is at the root of the term listless, which in its original sense meant a lack of desire. Similarly, the word listy is an old term that means desirous. Another word that isn’t what it seems is the adjective full-blown, which means fully developed, such as a full-blown case of pneumonia. The blown in this sense literally means in bloom or having blossomed, and is from the same linguistic root as the word peachblow, which means having the color of a peach blossom. This is part of a complete episode.
- Up Your Alley (episode #1504) 07/30/2018: Book recommendations, including a collection of short stories inspired by dictionaries, and a techno-thriller for teens. Or, how about novels with an upbeat message? Publishers... [more]
- Piping Hot (episode #1503) 07/23/2018: The game of baseball has alway inspired colorful commentary. Sometimes that means using familiar words in unfamiliar ways. The word stuff, for example, can refer... [more]
- Mimeographs and Dittos (episode #1502) 06/24/2018: In this episode: How colors got their names, and a strange way to write. The terms blue and orange arrived in English via French, so... [more]
- Spicy Jambalaya 06/18/2018: Teen slang from the South, and food words that are tricky to pronounce. • High schoolers in Huntsville, Alabama, told Martha and Grant about their... [more]
- Chopped Liver 06/10/2018: There's a proverb that goes "beloved children have many names." At least, that's true when it comes to the names we give our pets. "Fluffy"... [more]