World’s Strangest

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17 Winning Words From Past National Spelling Bees

KEVIN LAMARQUE/Reuters/Landov Yesterday, 14-year-old Snigdha Nandipati from San Diego won the Scripps National Spelling Bee by correctly spelling the word guetapens, which means “to ambush.” To celebrate Nandipati’s impressive achievement, here are 17 of the most interesting words from the Bee’s 87-year history. 1. Gladiolus, 1925. The word (a type of flower) is notable not due to [...]

11 Obscure Regional Phrases We All Should Start Using

REUTERS /KEVIN LAMARQUE /LANDOV Now that you’ve added those 19 distinctly American words to your vocabulary, here are 11 more phrases from different linguistic regions around the country—courtesy of the wonderful Dictionary of American Regional English, edited by Joan Hall, which released its fifth volume this spring. Keep in mind that these phrases are representative not [...]

19 Regional Words All Americans Should Adopt Immediately

REUTERS /KEVIN LAMARQUE /LANDOV When traveling across the United States, it sometimes feels like the locals are speaking a whole different language. That’s where the Dictionary of American Regional English comes to the rescue. The last installment of this staggering five-volume tome, edited by Joan Houston Hall, was published last month, and let me tell you, [...]

The Unauthorized Biography of the Easter Bunny

The Easter Bunny is a beloved springtime character, but look deeper and you’ll realize nobody gives away that much chocolate unless they’re hiding something. KEVIN LAMARQUE/Reuters /Landov He Can’t Even Cover the Whole World! Say what you will about Santa Claus, but at least he’s delivering presents the world over. The shiftless Easter Bunny outsources egg and candy [...]