Monday, February 29, 2016

Happy Bissextus!

English: Postcard: Leap Year, 1908 Description...
"Be Careful, Clara, that's a fine Specimen!" (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In ancient Roman times, the leap day was inserted after the sixth day before the calendas of March, essentially creating a second sixth day.

Hence bis-, two or double, plus sextus, sixth.

Happy Bissextus!

To make more sense of this, see what I wrote about it last Wednesday.

Also, an old tradition says that in a bissextile year (and only in a bissextile year), women can propose to men, and men are not allowed to refuse.

Although proposing might be a bit much, a woman asking a single guy* on a date would be a nice way to mark the tradition. Just saying.

* Like me.

Thursday, February 18, 2016

A New Old Word for the Political Season: bomfog

Yesterday, in honor of Presidents' Day but two days late, I published "Presidential Coinages" at With a lot of help from Paul Dickson's book Words from the White House: Words and Phrases Coined or Popularized by America's Presidents, I highlighted eleven words that had been coined by U.S. presidents.

Thursday, February 11, 2016

A New Look for

A screen shot of the new layout. is wearing some nice new threads these days. Go to the website now and ooh and aah at the slick new look. (What's even better than how it looks for readers is how it works for contributors.)

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Eleven More Homophones You Didn't Know Existed

Back in December, I published one of my more popular posts, "Ten Homophones You Didn't Know Existed." There are certainly more than ten. And because I enjoy learning wonderful new ways to spell words I'm so used to pronouncing, I figured, why stop?

So here, then, are eleven more homophones you didn't know existed.