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Blind Tiger

When you pick up a book of poems, how many do you read in one sitting? Some people devour several in a row, while others savor them much more slowly. Plus, it’s a problem faced by politicians and public speakers: When you have to stand in...

The Merkel-Raute

Even foreign dignitaries can be plagued with the age-old problem of standing around in public: what do you do with your hands? German Chancellor Angela Merkel has taken to holding her hands in a certain way so often that it’s been named the...

“Saucered and Blowed” Idiom

Saucered and blowed is an idiom meaning that a project is finished or preparations are complete, but it’s not that odd—Bill Clinton’s used it. It derives from the rustic practice of spilling boiling-hot coffee into a saucer and blowing...

Imeldific

If something’s gaudy and excessive, Filipinos might call it imeldific. It’s a slang term inspired by Imelda Marcos and her legendary shoe collection. This is part of a complete episode.

Washington Monument ploy

Washington Monument ploy  n.— «Cynics suggest the proposed park closings are merely a bargaining tactic, a way to gain leverage in getting the budget passed. There’s even a name for it in political circles: the “Washington Monument...

Clinton fence

Clinton fence  n.— «Just after the morgue-like Border Patrol HQ, the road turns to dirt and the four of us—three Minutemen and I—bounce along in their SUV for a few minutes, due south. Then, abruptly, looms the border, represented here at...