Category Archives: Articles

The Fear of Being Buried Alive is Called ‘Taphophobia’

Dog Buries Cat Alive

Today I found out that the medical term for the irrational fear of being buried alive is called Taphophobia, also occasionally spelled Tephephobia, which means the same thing.    Taphophobia derives from the Greek “taphos” meaning “grave”. Today, this would be considered a somewhat irrational fear.  However, it wasn’t too long ago that this wasn’t irrational at all.  Taphophobia hit […]

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The American Government Once Intentionally Poisoned Certain Alcohol Supplies, Resulting in the Death of Over 10,000 American Citizens

Detroit Police During Prohibition

Today I found out that in an effort to scare people away from drinking alcohol, the American government once poisoned certain alcohol supplies; this resulted in the death of over 10,000 American Citizens. This, of course, was during Prohibition.  The government became frustrated with the fact that despite the manufacture, sale, and transportation of alcohol being banned, the number of […]

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Origin of the Term “Smart Alec”

kramer pimp

Today I found out the origin of the term “Smart Alec”. It was once thought this term was simply generic and that Alec wasn’t actually a real person.  However, relatively recent research by various etymologists such as Professor Gerald Cohen, in his1985 work “Studies of Slang”, has shown, based on considerable newspaper article evidence, that “Alec” was actually very probably […]

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It’s “Just Deserts” Not “Just Desserts”

Today I found out that the idiom used for the notion of someone “getting what’s coming to them”, whether good or bad, is actually “just deserts”, not “just desserts”. The misconception primarily stems from the fact that most people are unfamiliar with the word ‘desert’ (pronounced dizert), which more or less means the same thing as the word ‘deserve’.  Instead, […]

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