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Mafted

If you’re mafted, then you’re exhausted — especially if it’s due to heat, crowds, or exertion. Mafted is a Britishism, and its origin is unknown.  This is part of a complete episode.

Etymology of Pessimism

We get lots of calls and emails that take a pessimistic look at the way language changes– which reminded us that the word pessimism itself, just 100 or so years ago, was derided by the curmudgeons of old. People thought the word pessimism was...

Portuguese Procrastination

If you keep postponing an important chore, you’re said to be procrastinating. There’s a more colorful idiom in Portuguese, however. It translates as “to push something with your belly.” This is part of a complete episode.

The Whole Kit and Caboodle

Nothing brightens up an email like an emoticon. But is it appropriate to include a smiley face in an email to your boss? Also, what do time management experts mean when they say you should start each day by “eating the frog”? Plus, the...

Half Full of What?

If you see the trash can as half full, does that make you an optimist or a pessimist? Since it’s half full of garbage, as opposed to daisies or puppies, it’s questionable. On the other hand, in the tweeted words of Jill Morris:...