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Category: Language

Banana split

You’ll undoubtedly have heard this phrase before. Now take your pick from a selection of over 90 versions. I write a weekly newsletter called Everything Is Made Up and I sign off with a variant of the phrase “I’m gonna make like an X and Y”. To keep things fresh, I use a website and […]

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genius lightbulb

genius ˈdʒiːnɪəs noun: genius; plural noun: geniuses 1. exceptional intellectual or creative power or other natural ability. “she was a teacher of genius” synonyms: brilliance, great intelligence, great intellect, great ability, cleverness, brains, erudition, wisdom, sagacity, fine mind, wit, artistry, flair, creative power, precocity, precociousness antonyms: stupidity 2. an exceptionally intelligent person or one with […]

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Peter Sellers at home in Belgravia, London, 1973

Accent-switching is a wondrous talent, for entertainment or as an element of code-switching. Peter Sellers was a skilled intellect. In a 1979 sketch, he presented “The Complete Guide To Accents of The British Isles”, as Don Shulman, an American professor of “accents and languages”. He travels through Europe and Britain playing numerous accents from John […]

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Black Lives Matter logo

There’s something to be said about the link between semiotics and activism. So I’m doing that right now with the help of this insightful video. I’m still on my semiotics tip and discovered this interesting video about myths, the hashtag #BlackLivesMatter and the loathsome #AllLivesMatter. I was wary of how both hashtags would be described […]

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The longest sentence composed of one single word. Buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo. One word, three meanings: the city of Buffalo, New York the verb, to buffalo, meaning “to bully, harass, or intimidate” or “to baffle” the animal (in North America bison are mistakenly called “buffalo”)

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