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How Best to Communicate Shared Grief

What should you say to someone who is grieving the loss of a loved one? When a person is experiencing a loss like that, it matters less what you say and more that you show up in the first place. Non-verbal communication of your sympathy can be far...

Happy as Larry

New research shows that you may be less influenced by superstitious behavior like walking under ladders or the magic of four-leaf clovers if you’re reading about it in another language. • Sometimes not cursing will catch someone’s ear...

Worcestershire Pronunciation

A listener in Williamsburg, Virginia, wants to know the correct pronunciation of the condiment known as Worcestershire sauce. The proper pronunciation involves what linguists call haplology, the loss of a syllable next to a similar-sounding one...

Episode 1374

Polyglot Problems

It’s the business of business jargon. Say you’re in line at the drugstore. Does it bother you if the cashier says, “Next guest”? In department stores and coffeeshops, does the term “guest” suggest real...

Get Web Soon

Ben Schott’s language blog Schott’s Vocab on the New York Times website held a contest for modern age greeting cards called Get Web Soon. Among the favorites: “Heartfelt condolences on the loss of your data” and...