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Decathlon, heptathlon, pentathlon, triathlon and biathlon

The decathlon is a summer sporting event that consists of ten track and field events over two days. The events in the decathlon are held in this order: 100 meters, long jump, shot put, high jump, 400 meters, 110 meters hurdle, discus throw, pole vault, javelin throw, 1500 meters. The Olympic decathlon is a male event, the winner is often considered the unofficial greatest all-around athlete in the world. The modern Olympic decathlon was first run at the 1912 games. The heptathlon is a summer … [Read more...]

Manspreading

Manspreading is the process in which a man sits on a public conveyance such as a bus or train with his legs spread wide apart in order to take as much space as possible and discourage other passengers from sitting close to him. The idea of men sitting on public conveyances with their legs spread very wide has been bandied about on the internet since 2008, but the New York blog AM New York was the first place where the term man spread was used, in 2014. The term proved very popular, and the noun … [Read more...]

The whole megillah

The whole megillah means the entirety of something, especially something that is an entanglement of intricate arrangements or a long, complicated story. The whole megillah is an American idiom taken from Yiddish. In Hebrew, the Megillah is one of five books read on special Jewish feast days. The Book of Esther, read on Purim, is especially long and complicated. A tedious and complicated story came to be called the gantse Megillah in Yiddish, which translates as the whole Megillah. The term … [Read more...]

Morning vs mourning

Morning is the early part of the day, before noon. Morning is the time between midnight and noon, but most often the word is used to refer to the time period of the day between sunup and noon. Morning is also used figuratively to mean the beginning of something, the early stages of something. The word morning is derived from the Middle English word morewen. Mourning is the expression of grief, the official period of time during which one grieves a death or the trappings of grief, such as … [Read more...]

Muscle vs mussel

Muscle is the fibrous tissue in an animal or human body that contracts and expands in order to create movement, either internal or external. The word muscle is also used to describe someone or something that is powerful or influential or something that is accomplished through force. Informally, muscle also indicates a person who is physically strong or whose job it is to enforce rules. Muscle is derived from the Latin word musculus. A mussel is a bivalve mollusk of the marine genus Mytilus or … [Read more...]

Marquee vs marquis

In North American English, marquee describes the canopy that hangs over the entrance to a building such as a theater or a hotel. This marquee usually advertises the name of the building or the movie, play or entertainer appearing at the building. Marquee may also be used as an adjective to indicate the lead or premier entertainer in a production. In British English, a marquee is a large, commercial tent used in outdoor events of a social or commercial nature. A marquis is a European nobleman … [Read more...]

Mind your own beeswax

Mind your own beeswax means stay out of of my affairs, stop being nosy. Mind your own beeswax is a slang rendition of the phrase mind your own business. There is a popular theory that mind your own beeswax started as a retort in the 1700s. As the story goes, women covered their pockmarks with beeswax in the 1700s, which would often run off their faces when they got too near the fire. This story is untrue. In fact, the first known rendering of the term mind your own beeswax is in a children's … [Read more...]

Oligarchy vs monarchy

An oligarchy is a small group of elite people who control a country, business, government or other institution. An oligarchy may also be a country or government that is controlled by a small group of elite people. An oligarchy may be an assembled clique of people or a particular select class of people, an oligarchy is usually considered tyrannical. Related words are oligarch, oligarchic, oligarchical, oligarchically. The word oligarchy is derived from the Greek word oligarkhia, which means … [Read more...]

SOS and Mayday

SOS is a distress call, it is recognized internationally as a message calling for help in a time of extreme distress.  The letters SOS are not an acronym, SOS was developed to be used as a radio signal. In Morse code, "s" is transmitted as a series of three dots and "o" is transmitted as a series of three dashes, which makes SOS in Morse code easy to transmit repeatedly and easy for the listener to decode. Germany was the first country to used SOS as a distress call in 1905, the SOS distress … [Read more...]

Monday morning quarterback and armchair quarterback

A Monday morning quarterback is someone who second-guesses a decision someone else has made after the event is finished. A Monday morning quarterback criticizes from the comfort of 20/20 hindsight. The term comes from the fact that most American football games are played on Sunday, and it is easy to criticize a quarterback's decisions in the heat of the moment from the vantage point twelve or more hours after the football game has ended. Monday morning quarterback is a pejorative term, first … [Read more...]

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