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Reading the OED from A to Z (minicast)

Word nerd Ammon Shea quit his job as a furniture mover in New York City to spend an entire year reading the entire Oxford English Dictionary. The result, in addition to eyestrain, headaches, and skeptics’ puzzlement, was Shea’s new book...

spiff

spiff  n.— «Does Staples have a chance? You bet, because they have thousands of people walking into their retail stores every hour, giving them a huge customer base to contact. Although their Staple Business Advantage program for office...

flow

flow  n.— «These days, Mr. Macintosh is on “flow” from Etnies, meaning he receives shoes for free, in an informal sponsorship that is one of the ways companies support and nurture skateboarders, and, yes, advertise their brand...

momtourage

momtourage  n.— «There’s a new word out there—momtourage—to describe that group of people who provide a mother with the support she needs to get the job done, especially as the new school year starts.» —“’Momtourages’ lend a...

mudjacking

mudjacking  n.— «The repairs to Sprigg Street have included removing fill material put in place to raise the roadbed following the Great Flood of 1993, material that had deteriorated badly, Gramling said. “It was just kind of a mud...

play pump

play pump  n.— «Two men in South Africa recognized that the average woman in rural Africa has to walk three miles to get clean water. And they created something called “play pumps,” which is a hydraulic system, in which they...