Tag Archives: usage

Mentor, mentee — how about mentoree?

One of the positives (or is it a negative?) of working with language so much of the time is the sheer volume of unusual things you encounter. Not simply an odd word or usage here and there, but also the … Continue reading

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When is a word not a word?

The question should be: Is there any validity to a claim that “a word isn’t a word?” Alright, you’re asking yourself: What’s got his goat this time? It’s not so dramatic as that! But, because I spend (waste?) some portion … Continue reading

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Times Less and Times Fewer? Bad Choices.

What’s wrong with the following two sentences? “At its closest approach, New Horizons swooped to within 3,500 kilometers of MU69, more than three times as close as the probe got to Pluto.” Science News, February 2, 2019. “That’s about twice … Continue reading

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Utopia vs Dystopia? Surprise! They mean the same thing.

I’ve noted in the past on this blog how every once in a while a word rises to sudden prominence in popular usage, but is nonetheless used incorrectly by almost everyone. I blame this largely on media pundits, who hear … Continue reading

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Unusual Words: Defining Prelapsarian and Manichaean

As a language person I, of course, love words. Although as with most things that generate intense feeling, I also hate words (remember everyone: the opposite of love is not hate—it’s indifference*). So I relish moments when I come across … Continue reading

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