Monthly Archives: September, 2013

Truly Epic Words and Phrases from Mythology

Have you ever finished a conversation wishing your words had a more lasting impression? Do you want your similes and metaphors to sound more intelligent? Then look no further than to the realm of mythology. With an abundance of literature stocked full of literally epic deeds and the characters who performed them, it’s the perfect(…)

Hyperbole: The Sport Commentator’s Greatest Tool. Ever.

The Super Bowl is sometimes called “the greatest sporting event in the world”. That’s quite a claim considering that the vast majority of fans hail from just one country. Baseball players dream of winning the World Series, which for a league including only one non-American team, is also absurd. Money is the primary driving force(…)

The German Words We Should All Be Using

If there’s one thing I love about the German language – and one thing German is excellent at – it’s stringing words together to make new words. We do the same in English: sea-lion, armchair, fireplace; but they’re usually a little more straightforward and don’t get anywhere near as long as German words can. If(…)

From N00B to 1337: Gamer Talk Dissected

If you’ve ever spent any serious time playing video games, you should be able to translate the title. If not, there’s never been a better time to acclimate yourself with the lingo. Since video games are exponentially evolving in line with Moore’s law, they’re positioned to keep pace with computers and become an increasingly important(…)

Has Political Correctness Gone Mad?

If I type “political correctness” into my search bar, third in the list of suggestions is the phrase “political correctness gone mad”. A favourite of UK tabloid the Daily Mail, it has become somewhat of a cliché and is used to invoke hysteria about supposed policing of language. Ironically, many people would object to the(…)

Sugarcoatings for Sweet Tooths – Euphemisms Explained!

I’m going to send you to Belize. If this phrase has any meaning to you apart from embarking on a tropical vacation, chances are good you’re a fan of AMC’s hit television series Breaking Bad. The phrase is used in the final season of the show as a euphemism for murder. A euphemism, of course,(…)

A Gift of Words from Pillagers & Ransackers

English is a mishmash of all the languages that have influenced it over thousands of years. Although Britain has done more than her fair share of conquering and ruling invading about 90% of the world in one way or another, so too have the British Isles been subject to invasion after invasion. From the Romans(…)

Migrating Voices: Languages in Unexpected Places

From the dawn of time to the present day, we as a species have roamed the world – and not just as individuals and families, but as communities. Whether escaping unfortunate circumstances in the places we leave behind or chasing a dream away from home, we continue to move from country to country and take(…)

Brosteque Enough For You? The Devolution of the ‘Brother’

Patrick sets down a red plastic cup of Miller Lite and looks at himself in the mirror. He adjusts his baseball cap and pops the collar of his rugby shirt. He can’t wait to start shouting about how awesome he is. There is a knock at the door. “Hey bro, you almost ready?” Patrick and(…)