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old maid

old maid  n.— «The key to successful popcorn is the roughly 13 percent moisture inside each kernel, which makes it explode under heat. Lose the moisture and you’ve got duds, or what the popcorn industry calls Old Maids.» —“Tricks to...

chain migration

chain migration  n.— «Demographers have a name for it: chain migration. “People who live near each other share information about where to retire, where to vacation,” said Lance deHaven-Smith, a professor of public administration at Florida...

stained-glass ceiling

stained-glass ceiling  n.— «The Rev. Barbara Williams Riddle knows all about the stained-glass ceiling the psychological barrier that keeps women from the pulpit of large, upscale congregations.» —“The stained-glass...

horse ballet

horse ballet  n.— «In her 20s, Lesko’s interests turned to dressage, an intense form of competitive horse training that is sometimes called “horse ballet.” She trained to the Grand Prix level in dressage and became a serious...

fluorescent tan

fluorescent tan  n.— «After a few nights of club crawling, you’ll need some fresh air and sunshine. You don’t want to return home with a fluorescent tan and emphysema, do you?» —“A rockin’ tour of Austin” by Curtis...

vulture clause

vulture clause  n.— «Crist termed it the “vulture clause” because private companies could conceivably offer someone in Citizens a rate that was 24 percent higher and the homeowner would be forced to accept it.» —“Insurance...