You want a palinode with that Epopee?

The two most recent words from “Wordsmith” are more than a little obscure. As an engineer, I don’t expect to...

DadWords08/30/06 0 comments

Old, Older

When is "older" younger than "old"?

PatrickWords03/01/06 2 comments


Tending to find fault and make trivial and excessive criticisms

PatrickWords02/27/06 0 comments

The first Boycott

Bet you didn't know that "boycott" is the name of a real person.

DadWords01/30/06 2 comments

Somewhere, beyond the pale

One of his characters is a mysterious man who is ostensibly the last wandering story teller in Ireland.

DadWords01/26/06 0 comments

Unnegative Words

"It had been a rough day, so when I walked into the party I was very chalant, despite my efforts to appear gruntled and consolate."

PatrickWords01/16/06 3 comments

Aptronym (charactonym)

An aptronym is a name that suits one's profession, which is why I try to drive my students crazy with my teaching.

PatrickWords10/22/05 1 comments

Do Icebergs Itch?

Sometimes, I think I'm just scratching the tip of the iceberg.

DadWords07/31/05 3 comments

E. Brunswick wins again!

It's the first time East Brunswick is a two-peat.

DadWords05/03/05 0 comments

fait divers

In this provisional universe, our axioms have only the value of a _fait-divers_. --E. M. Cioran.

PatrickWords03/08/05 1 comments


Schlemiel, schlemazel, hosenpepper incorporated!

PatrickWords11/06/04 0 comments

“Looking it up” to save your life

Use those reference books. They may just save your life. They saved Neil Peart's.

PatrickConnections/Words10/03/04 1 comments

Trepfverten / Trepverter

What do you call the perfect comeback that you think of too late?

PatrickWords10/03/04 8 comments


Do you delight in others' misfortunes? You just might have _schadenfreude_.

PatrickWords10/03/04 5 comments

Last gristle

How come the gristle's always in the last bite of the burger/taco?

PatrickObservations/Words09/25/04 2 comments


If you don't like 'em, lumpen!

PatrickWords09/15/04 1 comments


You're so strong and sweet, you oenomel, you!

PatrickWords09/15/04 1 comments


Docent (lecturer or museum guide), where have you been all my life?

PatrickWords08/29/04 1 comments


Reclude: to open or to close.

PatrickWords08/25/04 1 comments


...his first novel, ''You Bright and Risen Angels,'' ... narrated the endless struggle, down through history, between insects and electricity.

DadReviews/Words04/25/04 0 comments


Trying to convince somebody of an ethical or moral claim? Try casuistry!

PatrickWords04/22/04 0 comments


The pleasant smell that accompanies the first rain after a dry spell.

PatrickWords04/07/04 0 comments

Common Mispronunciation

"Common Mispronunciation" is full of idiotspeak that we Maddens frown on down on. Some is just nitpicking, but hey.

DanWords03/31/04 4 comments


Petra=rock, oleum=oil. Why did this never click before?

PatrickConnections/Words03/18/04 1 comments

Piggies and Toadies

I’ve been reading Arianna Huffington’s book Pigs at the Trough in which she exposes the abuses of power that are...

DadWords03/09/04 1 comments


How come changing an a to an e makes the o sound different?

PatrickWords03/04/04 3 comments


illation (n) is not a late-twentieth-century rapper neologism.

PatrickWords01/27/04 2 comments


I've discovered a new word, enigmaramus, which, the Internet tells me, has been used only in the naming of a Chilean lacewing, and which, logic tells me, has a bright future as an insult.

PatrickWords01/01/04 2 comments

Hopefully, I will be able to

During my instant messaging conversation with Matt about ESPN polls I told him not to kill anything when he gets...

DanWords11/25/03 2 comments

Anomy (or anomie)

According to dictionary.com and the American Heritage Dictionary: 1. Social instability caused by erosion of standards and values. 2. Alienation...

PatrickWords11/22/03 1 comments