THE AMATEUR WORD NERD: As American as pumpkin pie

By Barbara McAlister Word of the Day: Pumpkin It’s that time of year when everything turns to pumpkin. The word pumpkin comes from an ancient…

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THE AMATEUR WORD NERD: Earmark this one

By Barbara McAlister Word of the Day: Earmark Politicians talk about earmarking funds all the time, particularly in an election year. It refers to setting…

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THE AMATEUR WORD NERD: Have a cup of tea tea by the big river river

By Barbara McAlister Word of the Day: Chai You might already know that if you ask for chai tea, you are literally asking for “tea…

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THE AMATEUR WORD NERD: Freelancers can thank Sir Walter Scott

By Barbara McAlister Word of the Day: Freelance Are you a freelance worker or do you freelance a particular talent? If you do, you are…

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THE AMATEUR WORD NERD: Sacre bleu, ‘sabotage’ started with French shoes

By Barbara McAlister Word of the Day: Sabotage Sabotage, the action of deliberately destroying or damaging something, often for military or political gain, comes from…

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THE AMATEUR WORD NERD: Nothing lost in this translation

By Barbara McAlister Word of the Day: Translation The word “translation” comes from a part of the Latin root that means to transfe’, literally carry…

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THE AMATEUR WORD NERD: Did you know that Lewiston is eponymous?

By Barbara McAllister Word of the Day: Eponymous Eponymous refers to something named for a person. It comes from the Greek root onyma, meaning name….

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THE AMATEUR WORD NERD: Protean is a protean word

By Barbara McAlister Word of the Day: Protean In June, Dr. Anthony Fauci, the country’s leading expert on infectious disease, said in a coronavirus update…

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THE AMATEUR WORD NERD: Spam, a tale of singing Vikings and computer nerds

By Barbara McAlister Word of the Day: Spam Ever wonder why the unsolicited junk mail in your computer is called spam? The name is a…

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THE AMATEUR WORD NERD: Can you be left-handed and still be adroit?

By Barbara McAlister Word of the Day: Adroit “Adroit” means skilled, and comes from the French à droit — to the right. It is similar…

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