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Will You 'Cotton' to These Word Origins? Jun. 24, 2020

The Word Guy

"I don't cotton to that idea," a friend said the other day. The idea he wasn't "cottoning to" was my... Read More

Find What's Weak, and Make a Tweak Jun. 17, 2020

The Word Guy

Sentences, like radios, often require fine-tuning. Misplaced modifiers, ambiguous pronoun references... Read More

'Gregarious' and 'Ruminate' Share Beastly Origins Jun. 10, 2020

The Word Guy

Whenever a minister speaks of a congregation as a "flock" — the last time this happened, by th... Read More

When Being 'Correct' Can Lead to a Wreck Jun. 03, 2020

The Word Guy

A newspaper reporter recently wrote that an Edgar Degas exhibit was "up for fewer than 10 days." I d... Read More

Classic Ann Landers May. 31, 2020

Classic Ann Landers

Editor's Note: Hundreds of Ann Landers' loyal readers have requested that newspapers continue to pub... Read More

Are You A-Where of These Regional Terms? May. 20, 2020

The Word Guy

Despite the homogenization of American language during the past century, many delightful words uniqu... Read More

Are You Game for Some Word Games? May. 06, 2020

The Word Guy

What is the only letter that does not appear in the name of any U.S. state? What do the city of Pari... Read More

All's 'Fare' in Love and 'Commuting' Mar. 04, 2020

The Word Guy

Q: Why do we call someone who travels back and forth to work a "commuter"? — Chris Ryan, New Y... Read More

Sitting in the Cat Word Seat Jan. 29, 2020

The Word Guy

On an evening dark and dreary, I was pondering possible topics for my next column when my gray tabby... Read More

Dad Fires Up His 'Range' Rover Jan. 22, 2020

The Word Guy

My 23-year-old daughter called me the other day to tell me that her landlord had provided a "new ove... Read More

Bristle While You Work Jan. 15, 2020

The Word Guy

One of the occupational hazards of writing a language column (other than introducing myself and havi... Read More

Walking in a Winter 'Worder'-land Nov. 20, 2019

The Word Guy

Put some words in your wassail and some punctuation in your punch this holiday season with one of th... Read More

Thinning Hair May. 13, 2019

Dear Doug

Q: I've always been proud of my hair, even as it started to turn gray with age. Other women always c... Read More

Flo & Friends

May. 29, 2014