IIIIIIIt’s “Bailout”!

Well, it appears that the word bailout has edged out the competition for the American Dialect Society’s “Word of the Year 2008” vote. So much for my prediction yesterday on a San Diego TV show that the word would be change. My co-host Grant Barrett is right in the thick of the ADS decision-making, and more…

Can “Man of the Year” Be Far Behind?

“Nuke the Fridge.” “Fist Bump.” “Bailout.” Grant tells TIME magazine all about the new buzzwords for 2008.

Some Things You Stumble Across Online. . .

And you just have to share. Like, for example, this letter from a woman to her husband’s pillow. Genius.

Best. Pop-Up Book. Ever

For all you abecedarians, here it is.

Save the Words

A plea for one of my favorite words, “caducity.”

Latin’s Alive and Kicking

Heartening news for fans of Latin in today’s New York Times: The number of students in the United States taking the National Latin Exam has risen steadily to more than 134,000 students in each of the past two years, from 124,000 in 2003 and 101,000 in 1998, with large increases in remote parts of the more…

Typewriters We Have Loved, Part II

A lovely obituary for a typewriter repairman in this week’s issue of The Economist. ANYONE who had dealings with manual typewriters—the past tense, sadly, is necessary—knew that they were not mere machines. Eased heavily from the box, they would sit on the desk with an air of expectancy, like a concert grand once the lid more…

Adventures in Subtitling

Ever wonder who writes those subtitles? Check out this fascinating description of the day-to-day work of professional subtitlers. Guy La Roche, a Dutch translator living in France, offers a vivid look at the particular challenges of subtitling things like cartoons, Shakespeare . . . and porn: Once I had to do a whole series of more…

Verlyn Klinkenborg speaks for me

From his essay in the NYT today: I can see the appeal of a virtual community. I’ve joined three or four of these groups, partly just to see what’s going on but also to reconnect with old acquaintances and find new music. But some of these sites I don’t quite get. I’ve used Twitter a more…

Writers’ Rooms

A roundup in the The Guardian about how other writers’ offices look.