Browsing Month March, 2006

Washington Post food words

I forgot to mention that Double-Tongued Word Wrester got two mentions in the Washington Post in a list of Jane Mengenhauser’s favorite food words.

Sixth Seal

I’ve been reading the blog Sixth Seal for years. Originally, Malaysian Poh Huai Bin caught my eye because he and a friend were posting about experiments with various legal and illegal drugs. It seemed bold and revolutionary and a good way to find new drug slang. Now I read it because his prose is straightforward, more…

Camel Toe

There’s a thread on Ask Metafilter about foreign names for the camel toe. You know: when a woman’s pants are too tight. Eh? Update: The Ask Metafilter thread inspired today’s DTWW entry for moose knuckle.

Unprintable language? WTF?

Here’s a statement with which I almost completely disagree. It’s from a footnote on the first page of John Lancaster Riordan’s article “American Naval ‘Slanguage’ in the Pacific in 1945,” from California Folklore Quarterly, Oct. 1946, vol. 5, no. 4, p. 375. The employment of unprintable language represents an attempt to be manly—”one of the more…

Naming of viruses

That last post got me curious about how the name “H5N1” came about. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention explains: “Influenza type A viruses are divided into subtypes and named on the basis of two proteins on the surface of the virus: hemagglutinin (HA) and neuraminidase (NA). For example, an ‘H7N2 virus’ designates an more…

Avian bird flu influenza

I posted this a while back to ADS-L, but the avian bird flu epidemic continues. Not the virus, the redundancy of “avian” and “bird” when talking about the virus. Maybe “avian bird flu” is when an airline pilot gets sick from the chicken entree. What’s the opposite of “avian bird flu”? Pedestrian bird flu? But more…

An Imam in America

An amazing three-part series on a Muslim leader’s difficult work with his congregation in Brooklyn deserves to be permanently outside of the New York Times’ paywall (buyerwall, feewall, whatever you want to call it). There’s a mosque a couple of blocks from my apartment; I’ve always wondered how difficult the lives of the immigrant families more…

The Missing Austin Friars

I have a submission in the March issue of the online-only Lost Magazine.

Collegiate sex columnists: old hat

“It was one of the earliest student sex columns.” Baloney. The University of Missouri student newspaper, the Maneater, had a sex columnist more than 18 years ago, long before Natalie Krinsky was anywhere near puberty. (The newspaper’s name refers to a tiger, the school’s mascot, not to your collegiate sexual fantasies.)

The nature of a Missourian

There’s a passage I often quote (or, usually, misquote) from William Least Heat Moon’s 1982 book Blue Highways. A Missourian gets used to Southerners thinking him a Yankee, a Northerner considering him a cracker, a Westerner sneering at his effete Easternness, and the Easterner taking him for a cowhand. Bill is from Missouri and lives, more…