Monthly Archives: December 2004


A group of four coverall-clad workmen were gathered near the elevators the other day, fiddling with a partially disassembled door (all the doors leading into the interior spaces of our building have magnetic locks), their tools spread out around them.

Posted in General

Dude Sighting

Set your wayback machine to…well, last February: Home Run

Posted in General

Buffalo Gals Won’t You Come Out Tonight?

Buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo buffalo. Is that a valid English sentence? Can you parse it if you haven’t had it explained to you before? (if you haven’t, try it with some extra words to

Posted in Linguistics, Wordplay

Out of Little Eggcorns

Mighty weathervanes grow. Naked Translations, in discussing how to translate flip-flop into French has a really neat discussion of the evolution of the French term for weathervane: _girouette_. A crucial step appears like it might have been an eggcorn. _Wirewite_

Posted in Languages

Are you hep to the jive?

bq. John Leland kicks off his entertaining new book, Hip: The History, with a seductive little linguistic anecdote. The word hip, he says, derives from the West African language Wolof, and was “cultivated by slaves” from West Africa. Leland goes

Posted in Linguistics

And yet whom lives on

In some webcomics like qwantz at least

Posted in General

Puny Humans! Prepare to consult the bibliography!

Tip of the hat to It’s Ablaut Time for pointing out the amusingly-named MorBo bibliography of morphology literature at the University of Bologna.

Posted in General

Riddle Me This

It’s cheating if you remember them from the Hobbit.

Posted in Wordplay