Word Origins: Geek

The word geek has had various meanings over the last five centuries.  The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines the word geek as: 1: a carnival performer often billed as a wild man whose act usually includes biting the head off a live chicken or snake, 2: a person often of an intellectual bent who is disliked  3: […]


Misquoted: Cary Grant – Judy, Judy, Judy

Cary Grant never actually said that phrase “Judy, Judy, Judy” as a scripted line in the film Only Angels Have Wings His character says “Oh, Judy,” and “Come on, Judy,”. The line may have come from celebrity impersonator Larry Storch who was appearing in a nightclub and impersonating Grant when Judy Garland walked in. And […]


Some Octopuses Walk On 2 Limbs

Octopuses are the first animals without a hard skeleton (with muscles supported by fluid and not bone) known to walk on two limbs. They normally travel along the ocean floor using all or many of their eight arms in a sort of crawl.    Using underwater video,  scientists analyzed the strides of Octopus marginatus and Octopus […]


John Lennon – Annie Leibovitz Photo

On December 8, 1980, famed American photographer Annie Leibovitz was sent to photograph John Lennon and Yoko Ono and created the now famous Lennon nude curled around a fully clothed Ono.  Several hours after the photo shoot, Lennon was shot and killed. The photograph ran on the cover of Rolling Stone Lennon commemorative issue in […]


Trichobezoar: Rapunzel Syndrome

Trichobezoar is a rare intriguing disorder in which swallowed hairs accumulates in the stomach. First reported in 1779, trichobezoar is a combination of “trich” meaning hair in Greek and “bezoar” meaning poison antidote in Arabic or Persian. The habitual swallowing of hairs over the years leads to the formation of a hair ball in the […]



Halloween: 10 Interesting Factoids

 1. The word Halloween  first appeared in the 16th century and is a Scottish variant of All-Hallows-Even (“evening”), that is, the night before All Hallows Day. Although the phrase All Hallows is found in Old English (mass-day of all saints), All-Hallows-Even is itself not in use until 1556.   2. Some (though it is disupted) […]


New Phrases: Recombobulation Area

Milwaukee’s Mitchell International Airport coined a new phrase with their “Recombobulation Area” – a play on the word “discombobulate” meaning “to throw into a state of confusion”. Staff set up an area just outside of the security checkpoint so that disheveled passengers can put themselves back together without the stress of rushing to keep the […]


Accidental Inventions: Microwave Oven

  Heating food by microwave was discovered accidentally in 1945 by self-taught American engineer Percy Spencer. Spencer was working with the American company Raytheon on active radar sets when he noticed his Mr. Goodbar chocolate bar melting in his pocket.   Spencer experimented with the idea by microwaving  popcorn, and and eggs. He created a […]