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Origin of Nosy

Are we a nosy species? A listener married to a woman from Bangladesh explains how a Bengali term that translates as “nose-going” reflects the naturally inquisitive style of Bangladeshi culture. In many languages, the nose figures...

Picklebacks and Mountweazels

Martha and Grant talk about phrases you love to hate, like “Do you mind if I put you on hold?” They also talk about mountweazels, jakey bums, picklebacks, and step-ins. And which is the proper term: mothers-in-law or mother-in-laws?

Fake AP Stylebook Tweets

Grant and Martha share some of their favorite tweets from Fake AP Stylebook, the Twitter feed that tweaks journalistic style and tropes, such as “Do not change weight of gorilla in phrase, ‘800-lb gorilla in the room.’ Correct weight is...

harlotfest

harlotfest  n.— Note: A plausible etymology: “It’s called the ‘Harlot Fest’ out of an old rugby tradition about rugby whores. A rugby whore is someone who will go to a tournament & play for any team who will take...

blipster

blipster  n.— «So just what is a black hipster—a “blipster” or “alt-black”? Like many recent cultural trends, this one straddles race, politics, fashion and art. For the purposes of discussion, we’ll stick with men (though I have seen some...

Hip-Hop Book of Rhymes (minicast)

Hip-hop is high art. If you don’t understand that, you’re missing out on some of the best poetry being created today. Grant talks about the new book by English professor Adam Bradley called Book of Rhymes: The Poetics of Hip-Hop.