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Seagulling

What do you call it when you’re about to jump into a conversation but someone beats you to it? Mary, a caller and self-described introvert from Indianapolis, calls it getting seagulled, inspired by an episode of The Simpsons in which nerdy...

Take-Offs Word Quiz

Our Quiz Guy John Chaneski offers a quiz called Take-Offs. For each clue, remove the first letter of a word to get the second (or third) word in the puzzle. For example, in the first chapter of Moby Dick, Ishmael had to screw up his courage and join...

To The Sticking Point

What’s Lady Macbeth talking about when she urges Macbeth to “screw your courage to the sticking point”? This image of mustering up bravery most likely has to do with tightening the strings of a crossbow. This is part of a complete...

The Birds and the Bees

Hi, ho! Lots of “Behind The Scenes” news from “A Way with Words” this week, but first: In this week’s episode, we discuss “burrito babies” and other college slang. Also, “overegging the pudding,”...

own a blackout

own a blackout  v. phr.— «Otherwise take any taxi plying the Blue Town route at the busy taxi rank and tell the driver- as confidently as possible, or with a good dose of Dutch courage- to take you to Mma-Ten Days. He will deliver you at...

personal Everest

personal Everest  n.— «We awoke at dawn resembling damp tramps but feeling as if we had climbed a personal Everest of endurance…well maybe a Pen y Fan. Gordon Brown has his opinions on what defines courage. In my book, it’s spending...

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