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Fistumba

Michelle, a middle school teacher in Atlanta, Georgia, says her students believe they’ve invented a new word for “an injury received from a fist bump or dap.” They say they created fistumba as a combination of fist and Zumba, the...

Telephone Greetings

What do you say when you answer the telephone? On the NPR science blog, “Krulwich Wonders,” Robert Krulwich notes that hello did not become a standard greeting until the Edison Company recommended the word as a proper phone greeting...

Books The Way You’ve Never Seen Them

Greetings, all! In our most recent show, we talk about great words for Scrabble, plus "madcap" comedy, mondegreens, "No way, Jose!" "hubba hubba," and the name of that flourish underneath John Hancock's John Hancock...

The Year-End Edition

Greetings! Over the weekend, we played an archive episode featuring a special holiday quiz by John Chaneski. We also talked about “enormity,” “doorknob-hanging,” “cut to the chase,” and oddly phrased headlines. As...

Wheel of Yew

Greetings! In last weekend’s archive episode, we wondered who thinks up those crazy names for paint chips. We also discussed “spam” and “gringo,” dashes and semicolons, the term “first annual,” and wearing...

Language Newsletter in Your Inbox

Greetings! In our latest show, we talk about an expression familiar to many African-Americans but little known outside that community, "I couldn't buy a louse in a wrestling jacket." Also, what does it mean if your dog is...

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