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Half a Hole

Is there such thing as a half a hole? Most holes are whole holes, but even half holes are whole holes, if you think about it. In any case, it’s a fun conundrum, sort of like asking someone if they’re asleep. Children’s book author...

Digging to China

The idea of digging a hole to China surfaces as early as 1872 in a Chamber’s Journal fiction piece about beavers and engineers. Unfortunately, digging from almost anywhere in the United States would lead you to open water on the other end. To...

Higgs Boson

Among Grant’s word-of-the-year picks had to be Higgs boson, that fundamental particle of matter discovered by scientists at the Large Hadron Collider in Switzerland. This is part of a complete episode.


If you’re looking for a clever way to straddle the glass-half-empty line, try using litotes, or understated slights turned positive. For example, the guy you met for a blind date was really not unattractive. This is part of a complete episode.

Hypnagogic Startle

You’re falling asleep, then suddenly snap awake. There’s a term for that: hypnagogic startle or hypnic jerk. This is part of a complete episode.


jamiton  n.— «We’ve all been there—stuck in traffic, inching along, running late and getting angry when suddenly everyone starts moving. Just like that, the road clears. No flashing lights, no mangled cars, no clue to suggest what went...

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