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Interesting Foreign Expressions

The French expression peigner la girafe means to do a useless, tedious, or annoying job, but literally translates as “to comb the giraffe.” That’s one of the many gems in Mark Abley’s new book Watch Your Tongue: What Our...

Crotch Watch and Flying Dirty

What do flight attendants call that point in takeoff preparations when they walk up and down the aisle to make sure seatbelts are securely fastened? It’s the crotch watch, also known as a groin scan. The expression flying dirty refers to when...

Segal’s Law

Segal’s Law states, “A man with a watch knows what time it is. A man with two watches is never sure.” This is part of a complete episode.

macaroon technique

macaroon technique  n.— «He used PowerPoint to impart what he calls the “macaroon technique,” referring to the sandwich-like French macaron pastry. This can be applied to most any product (including, presumably, a Xerox machine) and goes...

sorry gift

sorry gift  n.— «Because guilt over spending is playing a big role in the sales downturn, he teaches salespeople to suggest a “sorry gift”—of another timepiece—for a wife who might be disappointed that her husband just dropped a sizable...