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11 or 22 or 44 or 66 or even 77

Every once in a while we ask you for money. Please donate now. Use the forms and fields below. If everybody who’s reading this right now sent in just $11 — that’s eleven dollars — we’d completely meet our budget and finish off the...

Take Me to the River

We’ve heard a lot lately about great athletic rivalries, most notably between Olympic swimmers Michael Phelps and Ryan Lochte. So it’s worth noting the source of this watery word. In ancient Rome, the word rivus meant “a small...

Mutt’s the Good Word?

Mary Jean Mueckenheim of Windsor, Vt., asks: What’s the origin of the word mutt? Our recent “Double Dog Dare” quiz about mixed-breed dogs has her thinking about that term. She wonders, “Did the word mutt come from the word...

Criminy Jiminy

Hey, friends! This past weekend, we re-aired an episode you may have missed. Among other things, we talked anatomical eponyms in medicine, such as Achilles heel and fallopian tubes, which are being phased out; litotes, which use negatives to say...