A Way With Words
Beat the Band - 12 October 201510/12/15
This week on "A Way with Words": Can language change bad behavior in crowded places? The Irish Railway system has launched ad campaign to encourage passengers to be more generous at boarding time. For example, have you ever rummaged through your...
Fighting Artichokes - 5 October 2015
What's in a mascot name? Maybe you're a fan of the Banana Slugs, or you cheer for the Winged Beavers. Perhaps your loyalty lies with the Fighting Artichokes. There are some strange names for sports team out there. But what's even stranger is the...
Burn Bag - 28 September 2015
This week on "A Way with Words": Slang from the 19th century. The slang coming out of Victorian mouths was more colorful than you might think. A 1909 collection of contemporary slang records clever terms for everything from a bald head to the act of...
Lord Love a Duck (Rebroadcast) - 21 September 2015
This week on "A Way with Words": Someone should write a love letter to a new book called "Letters of Note." It's a splendid collection of all kinds of correspondence through the ages: Elvis Presley fans writing to the president, children making...
Pumpkin Floater (Rebroadcast) - 14 September 2015
This week on "A Way with Words": Your telephone is for talking, right? Or is it? We're guessing it's been a while since you sat next to a telephone waiting for it to ring. In fact, maybe you're one of those people who HATE to see that voicemail...
Upstairs Basement (Rebroadcast) - 7 September 2015
This week on "A Way with Words": Giving your baby an unusual moniker may seem like a great idea at the time. But what if you have second thoughts? One mother of a newborn had such bad namer's remorse, she poured out her heart to strangers online....
Hang a Salami (Rebroadcast) - 31 August 2015
This week on "A Way with Words": What's so special about the phrase Sit on a pan, Otis!? It's an example of a palindrome -- a word or phrase that's spelled the same backwards as it is forwards. This year's contest known as the Oscars of the palindrome...
Hard Words Are Hard (Rebroadcast) - 24 August 2015
This week on "A Way with Words": The SAT is changing things up, but that's not necessarily a bad thing. Just because words like membranous are no longer in the verbal section doesn't mean kids aren't learning important vocabulary. And speaking of...
Brown as a Berry (Rebroadcast) - 17 August 2015
It used to be that you called any mixed-breed dog a mutt. But at today's dog parks, you're just as likely to run into schnugs, bassadors, and dalmadoodles. Also, if someone has a suntan, you might say he's brown as a berry. But then, when's the last...
Keep Your Pants On (Rebroadcast) - 10 August 2015
This week on "A Way with Words": If everyone on the planet spoke a single language, wouldn't that make life a whole lot easier? For that matter, is a common world language even possible? Maybe for a minute or so--until new words and phrases start...
Springtime Twitterpation (Rebroadcast) - 3 August 2015
Springtime is the right time to feel twitterpated—you know, you're smitten beyond a crush. Speaking of relationships, are dog owners really owners, or should they call themselves something else, like guardian or human? And if you're up for a...
Dust Bunnies (Rebroadcast) - 27 July 2015
This week on "A Way with Words": Is it cheating to say you've read a book if you only listened to it on tape? Over the centuries, the way we think about reading has changed a lot. There was a time, for example, when reading silently was considered...
Sound of a Kiss (Rebroadcast) - 20 July 2015
This week on "A Way with Words": You're at a social gathering and meet someone you'd like to know better. What do you ask to get a real conversation going? Some people lead with "What do you do?," while others avoid talking about work entirely. Still...
Bingo Fuel - 13 July 2015
This week on "A Way with Words": "If you come to a fork in the road . . . take it!" Baseball legend Yogi Berra was famous for such head-scratching observations.. What most people don't realize, though, is that the former Yankees star often wasn't the...
Feeling Gruntled (Rebroadcast) - 6 July 2015
Hyperbolic Headlines Will Restore Your Faith In Humanity!!!! Or maybe not. You've seen those breathless headlines on the internet, like "You Won't Believe What This 7-year-old Said to The President!" They're supposed to lure you to another...
Spit Game - 29 June 2015
This week on "A Way with Words": People in ancient times could be just as bawdy and colorful as we are today. To prove it, we found some graffiti written on the walls in the city of Pompeii, and found plenty of sex, arrogance and good old fashioned...
By the Seat of Your Pants (Rebroadcast) - 22 June 2015
Dude! We're used to hearing the word "dude" applied to guys. But increasingly, young women use the word "dude" to address each other. Grant and Martha talk about linguistic research about the meaning and uses of "dude." Also, the story behind the term...
How America Talks (Rebroadcast) - 15 June 2015
For language lovers, it's like New Year's, Fourth of July, and the Super Bowl all rolled into one: The brand-new online edition of the Dictionary of American Regional English. Martha and Grant explain what all the fuss is about. Plus, the debate over...
Thrown for a Loop (Rebroadcast) - 8 June 2015
We all lead busy lives--so are speed reading courses a good idea? Plus, if you hear someone speaking with a British accent, do you tend to assume they're somehow more intelligent? And some common English surnames tell us stories about life in the...
Shakespeare's Insults - 1 June 2015
If you don't have anything nice to say, say it like Shakespeare: Thou unhandsome smush-mouthed mush-rump! Thou obscene rug-headed hornbeast! The Shakespeare Insult Generator helps you craft creative zingers by mixing and matching the Bard's own...
- San Diego, CA
P.O. Box 632721
San Diego, CA 921631 (877) 929-9673