Words Borrowed From Foreign Languages

by Kevin Burton    When I travel to foreign lands such as Mexico or Mississippi, I bring back souvenirs. I’m sure you do too in your travels.    Some of the souvenirs we bring back are words and phrases. Today we look at some favorites from the Merriam Webster dictionary. Their list is of words …

Words For Real Life Or For Scrabble

by Kevin Burton      “Scrabble” is not a German word meaning “one letter off,” that’s just my little joke.    Scrabble also at its essence is not a word game as commonly supposed, but a game of mathematics and strategic placement of little tile soldiers.    For the words used in scrabble aren’t words so …

Loud Arguments About Silent Letters

by Kevin Burton    When my parents issued me flash cards before kindergarten, I wondered why the work “knife” had a K in it when it didn’t do anything.     All these years later I hear from Merriam-Webster that not just e’s and k’s but all the letters of the English alphabet are silent at …

All The Letters Can Be Silent? Shut Up!

by Kevin Burton    Silent E is so famous it has a song, we all know about that one. We know how the letter e at the end of man, changes the word to mane, for example.    The silent e turns the a from short to long.    But did you know all the …

Hey Word Lovers, Have An Awesome Day!

by Kevin Burton    Good day you awesome readers! Are you sick yet of the word “awesome”?    The term’s overuse is sparking some awesome outrage among speakers of English. Some generational friction emerges when you look into who is cool with “awesome” and who is not.    “Awesome” started with the California surfer crowd …

Rapping To The Ladies, Wishful Thinking

by Kevin Burton    I love the Doobie Brothers, but I have a complaint.   Let’s engage in a little wishful thinking, shall we? I wish Michael McDonald would enunciate.    Wishful thinking is “the attribution of reality to what one wishes to be true or the tenuous justification of what one wants to believe,” according …