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# Word for the Day

Hiding your true identity…   incognito   When you want to do something and not be recognized, go incognito — hiding your true identity.   It is funny that the words, recognize and incognito, are both related to the Latin verb, cognoscere, “to get to know” because when you do something incognito, you do not want to be recognized. Celebrities often try to…

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# Word for the Day

A friend or a pal… chum   A chum is a friend or a pal. You and your best chums might spend the weekend camping together.   The informal word chum is more common in Britain than the US, but you can still talk about your school chums or the new chum you made on a Caribbean cruise. Another kind of chum couldn’t…

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# Word for the Day

When you can’t or won’t believe something…   incredulous   If you are incredulous that means you can’t or won’t believe something. If you tell people about those aliens you met the other night, they’ll probably give you an incredulous look.   Incredulous is the opposite of credulous, which means “believing too easily.” Both words come from the Latin word credere, which…

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# Word for the Day

Insulting or contemptuous…   snide   Snide means insulting or contemptuous in an indirect way. If your friend is wearing too much purple eye shadow and your other friend whispers to you, “What? Was she in a car wreck?” that’s a snidecomment.   Snide remarks are the kinds of things people say with a sneer on their face.…

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# Word for the Day

When you make a lot of noise… ruckus   When you raise a ruckus you make a lot of noise. A ruckus can be the sound of an argument, the noise of soccer fans celebrating a victory, or it could be two-year-olds banging on pots and pans.   Ruckus sounds like what it means — loud and maybe a little…

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# Word for the Day

Cheap, shoddy, or tasteless…   tawdry   Tawdry means cheap, shoddy, or tasteless. It can be used to describe almost anything from clothes to people to even events or affairs.   You know that shiny black slip you picked up for nothing at a garage sale and used as the skirt of your lion-tamer Halloween costume?…

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# Word for the Day

Wildly out of control…   amuck   When things go amuck, they are wildly out of control. Someone running amuck is showing no self-control.   This is a word that has to do with chaos and disorder. A riot is an example of people running amuck. In a cafeteria, if people are yelling and throwing food, they are…