Category Archives: Language & Terms

Are You a Pig, Owl, Beaver, or Clam?

Animals and people have a lot in common, if language is any indicator (something that shows the current state or level of something). We compare people to animals all the time, whether it’s because of their appearance (how they look), … Continue reading

Posted in Language & Terms | 6 Comments

A Rock versus a Stone: A One-Minute Video Lesson

Here’s a one-minute video lesson on the difference between a rock and a stone in English. Enjoy! -Jeff  

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Color or Colour? Spelling as a Political Act

If you’re an English learner, you may be annoyed  at (bothered by) the differences in spelling in American English and British English. We Americans use “color” and the British use “colour.” We write “realize” and they write “realise.” You might think … Continue reading

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Things That Stick Out

“Stick out” is an interesting little expression. It describes something that is easy to see, or is noticeable, because it comes out farther than the rest. For example, “He’s so tall that he sticks out in a crowd (large group … Continue reading

Posted in Language & Terms, Life in the United States | 8 Comments

English is a Four-Letter Word

When someone in the U.S. uses the term “four-letter word,” they are referring to those words in English that are considered “obscene” or “vulgar”  – that is, bad language that you would not say in front of your mother, your teacher, or … Continue reading

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It’s All About “I”

Have you ever wondered why some words in English are capitalized (in big letters; type of letters at the beginning of sentences) and some words are not? Lucy has written about this topic before (see a couple of interesting posts here … Continue reading

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The Word Of The Year Is . . .

. . . is surreal. In the early 1800s, Noah Webster wrote the first American dictionary to show how American English is different than British English. His dictionary, now called Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary, is probably the most-used American English dictionary. Most … Continue reading

Posted in Language & Terms, Life in the United States | 12 Comments

What am I, Chopped Liver?

Hello, everybody! Today, I’m going to talk about a phrase you might hear in conversation, one that sounds just a little bit strange. Jeff:  “I heard that you need a singer for the show.” Lucy:  “Yes, I’m thinking of asking … Continue reading

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How Hot Is It?

Summer is winding down (coming to an end) in the U.S., and Matt Pace is probably glad to see it end. Pace is the weatherman for a TV station in Phoenix, Arizona. And in a recent interview, he said that he … Continue reading

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Danger! Dumpster Fire!

In the U.S., our national elections are less than 100 days away. For the next three months we’ll read and hear a lot of what some call “politalk” – political talk – in news stories, TV ads, speeches, and interviews. … Continue reading

Posted in Language & Terms, News and Current Events | 6 Comments