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  • Do you hunker down or bunker down?

    Feb 27, 2015 | 0 Comments

    It depends on what kind of emergency you are facing. A bunker in the First World War was a reinforced concrete underground shelter, designed to withstand a bomb. To bunker down is to find shelter against attack, whether that shelter is physical or metaphorical. People preparing for a cyclone would bunker down. Read more...


  • Under the pump

    Feb 20, 2015 | 0 Comments

    What does it mean to be 'under the pump'?

    It seems that the story begins in merry England with the village pump. There is an account in The Pickwick Papers where Mr Pickwick is almost put under the pump until Sam Weller rescues him. Read more...


  • Be my Valentime!

    Feb 11, 2015 | 0 Comments

    There is a common mispronunciation of St Valentine’s Day which has led to the spelling Valentimes Day.This is possibly the result of mishearing combined with a lack of awareness of the existence of St Valentine. Read more...


  • John Birmingham takes on the 2014 Word of the Year – and mansplains manspreading

    Feb 03, 2015 | 2 Comments

    A blog post from guest contributor John Birmingham

    John Birmingham tells us what he thinks of the Macquarie Word of the Year 2014. He's reviewed the list of contenders ahead of time and doesn't hold back: 'Oh God, it’s so not funny because it’s just so true'. Read more...