Our Crazy Language

  • Did you know that “verb” is a noun?
  • How can you look up words in a dictionary if you can’t spell them?
  • If a word is misspelled in a dictionary, how would we ever know?
  • If two mouses are mice and two louses are lice, why aren’t two houses hice?
  • If Webster wrote the first dictionary, where did he find the words?
  • If you wrote a letter, perhaps you bote your tongue?
  • If you’ve read a book, you can reread it. But wouldn’t this also mean that you would have to “member” somebody in order to remember them?
  • In Chinese, why are the words for crisis and opportunity the same?
  • Is it a coincidence that the only 15 letter word that can be spelled without repeating a letter is uncopyrightable?
  • Is there another word for a synonym?
  • Shouldn’t there be a shorter word for “monosyllabic”?
  • What is another word for “thesaurus”?
  • Where do swear words come from?
  • Why can’t you make another word using all the letters in “anagram”?
  • Why do fat chance and slim chance mean the same thing?
  • Why do overlook and oversee mean opposite things?
  • Why do people use the word “irregardless”?
  • Why do some people type “cool” as “kewl?”
  • Why do we say something is out of whack? What is a whack?
  • Why do we say something’s out of order when its broken but we never say in of order when it works?
  • Why does “cleave” mean both split apart and stick together?
  • Why does “slow down” and “slow up” mean the same thing?
  • Why does flammable and inflammable mean the same thing?
  • Why does the Chinese ideogram for trouble symbolize two women living under one roof?
  • Why does X stand for a kiss and O stand for a hug?
  • Why doesn’t “onomatopoeia” sound like what it is?
  • Why don’t we say “why” instead of “how come”?
  • Why is “crazy man” an insult, while to insert a comma and say “Crazy, man!” is a compliment?
  • Why are a wise man and wise guy opposites?
  • Why is abbreviation such a long word?
  • Why is dyslexic so hard to spell?
  • Why is it so hard to remember how to spell MNEMONIC?
  • Why is it that no word in the English language rhymes with month, orange, silver, or purple?
  • Why is it that the word “gullible” isn’t in the dictionary?
  • Why is it that we recite at a play and play at a recital?
  • Why is it that writers write but fingers don’t fing, grocers don’t groce and hammers don’t ham?
  • Why is the alphabet in that order? Is it because of that song?
  • Why is the plural of goose-geese, and not the plural of moose-meese?
  • Why isn’t “palindrome” spelled the same way backwards?
  • Why isn’t phonetic spelled the way it sounds?