Babbel Offers Free Language Courses for Ukrainian Speakers

I’ve been using Babbel to study French every day for the last few months, hav­ing tak­en advan­tage of one of their Yule­tide spe­cials to get a Life­time mem­ber­ship. Tues­day morn­ing, I received notice of a new press release from them. Babbel Launch­es Free Lan­guage Cours­es For Ukraini­ans On Its Plat­form Babbel to launch lan­guage cours­es for […]

TotD: Why is English spelling so odd?

From David Crys­tal’s book The Fight for Eng­lish: How lan­guage pun­dits ate, shot, and left, by way of Delancey Place. In spelling, the [Eng­lish] lan­guage was assim­i­lat­ing the con­se­quences of hav­ing a civ­il ser­vice of French scribes, who paid lit­tle atten­tion to the tra­di­tions of Eng­lish spelling that had devel­oped in Anglo-Sax­on times. Not only […]

Geography is colorful — and a whole lot more

Nation­al Geograhic is lead­ing the My Won­der­ful World cam­paign. There are sug­ges­tions for par­ents, kids, teens, and edu­ca­tors.  I wan­na be a teen. I want to get a pass­port and a nifty lit­tle GPS unit and go geo­caching and explore the world and learn oth­er languages. 

Needed: Hebrew Speaker With a Good Singing Voice for Recording Project

A dear friend is record­ing a CD of orig­i­nal music and needs a singer. Some­one in the Pacif­ic North­west (US) would be good, but my friend is will­ing to trav­el for this project. This per­son needs to be “will­ing to sing songs hop­ing for equal rights to all res­i­dents of Israel/Palestine.” Please feel free to […]

Translating the Untranslatable

In Oth­er Words: A Lan­guage Lover’s Guide to the Most Intrigu­ing Words Around the World Lin­guist Christo­pher J. Moore has made a career of search­ing out some of the world’s most “untrans­lat­able” expressions—words from around the globe that defy an easy trans­la­tion into Eng­lish. Moore shares a few of his lin­guis­tic favorites from his new book […]


I sub­scribe to sev­er­al dif­fer­ent “word of the day” lists. Some are tech­ni­cal, like the list. One is from Buzz­whack. Sev­er­al are just “nor­mal” lists. Every time there’s actu­al­ly a new-to-me word on one of them, I get all excit­ed. skookum (SKOO-kuhm) adjec­tive Pow­er­ful; first-rate; impres­sive. [From Chi­nook Jar­gon, from a Chehalis word mean­ing spirit […]

Friday Fun

shad­owkatt left her purse at the mar­tial arts stu­dio last night, so I cru­el­ly forced her out of bed to go with me when sam­bear went to the bus. We’re about halfway to the stu­dio there, so I did­n’t want to come all the way back home to get her. The founder, Grand­mas­ter M, was […]

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