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Preview: The Word Guy - ArcaMax Publishing

The Word Guy - ArcaMax Publishing

The Word Guy News Feed

Copyright: Copyright 2017 ArcaMax Publishing

Will Texting Ruin Our Writing? OMG!


Texting -- a tumultuous treehouse full of bizarre spellings, incomplete sentences and weird abbreviations -- is being widely blamed for the decline of students' composition skills. A pugnacious posse of teachers, parents and pedants, armed with...

When Should 'Predominate' Dominate?


Q: Nowadays, I see more and more journalists use the verb "predominate" as an adjective, instead of "predominant." Are these journalists wrong? -- Curt Guenther, Memphis A: A journalist wrong? My stars! Quick confession. I made the error you ...

I Know Where You're Coming From


Trick question: If it's "quarter of four in Boston," what time is it in Seattle? Answer: "Twelve forty-five." People in New England usually say "quarter of" and "quarter after" when telling time, but Pacific Coasters tend to say the number of ...

Dishing Up the Origins of 'Chafing'


I was serving as a "celebrity chef" at a recent fundraising event (despite my being neither a celebrity nor a chef). Suddenly one of my fellow c.c.'s (who actually WAS a celebrity) approached and asked why the device warming the scrumptious Coq ...

Read These Bloopers and Commiserate


The ever-vigilant Word Guy Blooper Patrol reports these recent sightings: 1. "We wanted a highly qualified superintendent ... and we have to pay someone a commiserate salary." Is the pay really that low? (Spotted by Stuart Jay Sydney, Storrs, ...

I Know What You Said Last Summer


Summertime, when the living is easy . . . But the lingo of summer isn't so easy. Here's a handy guide to pesky terms that dive bomb us like mosquitos on long summer evenings. Speaking of long evenings, remember that it's "daylight saving time"...

The Devil Made Me Chew It


Picture a devil on your left shoulder and an angel on your right shoulder. Now select the correct origin for each diabolical or heavenly food name: 1. Deviled eggs A. They often have red paprika sprinkled on them. B. They're often made with ...

Let's Play Beach Blanket Lingo!


Whether you're boating, biking or beaching this summer, tote along one of these new books about words and language. Take a refreshing dive into a crystal lake with "Do I Make Myself Clear? Why Writing Matters" by Harold Evans (Little, Brown, $...

Let's Jive 'Bout 'Gibe' 'n 'Jibe'


"Gibe, "jibe" or "jive"? We seem to slip on the banana peels dropped by these troublesome triplets every time we encounter them. See whether you can select the correct word in each of these sentences: The raucous audience started to heckle and...

This Column Is a Good Read


We can do the remove and install in two days. The build will take a week. I'd like to introduce the new hire. If these sentences grate on your nerves, you're not alone. Mark Lander of Old Saybrook, Conn., sent them to me to illustrate the ...