Word of the day: catch on

Like any major city around the world, London is a busy, noisy place. People are often rushing from one place to the next and, increasingly, we are all bombarded by sound: there's the roar of traffic, the ringing of phones,…

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Word of the day: provincial

This morning, I took my kids down to Gökyüzü, one of the many amazing restaurants near where we live, for a Turkish breakfast. As you may have seen  from the featured photo, the portions there are so huge that the…

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Word of the day: craic

Over the last few days, I've actually been to Dublin, the capital of Ireland, twice! Last Friday, I also spent a few hours in Galway, on the wild west coast of Ireland, where the winds come whipping in from the…

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Word of the day: less

The other day, just as I was slowly waking up and making my first cup of coffee, I heard a discussion on the radio about the whether or not you can say “less than one in five people”. It seemed…

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Word of the day: social mobility

Social mobility is the idea that over their lifetimes or across generations, people from lower-class backgrounds can move to a higher social class. An example of this would be my father, who grew up in relative poverty in Liverpool before…

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Word of the day: cowboy

If, like many foreign students, the main image that comes into your head when you think of cowboys involves men in big hats and long boots, riding horses and heading off into the sunset somewhere in America, then you may…

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Word of the day: mate

I witnessed a rather entertaining scene yesterday afternoon outside a tube station in north London. The wallet of a middle-aged man somehow managed to drop out of his back pocket as he was leaving the station, and a younger -…

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Word of the day: drone

Up until a few years ago, the word drone was most commonly used as a verb. If someone droned on and on, they talked about something in a boring way for a long time, so you might get stuck next…

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Word of the day: Cheers

Following on from our previous post on the phrase bon appetit, it's perhaps a reflection of the priorities here in the UK that it's far easier to come up with a single English word for what we say before we…

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Word of the day: wide boy

Every big city contains certain kinds of characters who come to represent some deep and fundamental truth about the place. They capture some timeless essence of their being. One of the most enduring social types familar to anyone who's spent…

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