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Arika Okrent

Arika Okrent is editor-at-large at TheWeek.com and a frequent contributor to Mental Floss. She is the author of In the Land of Invented Languages, a history of the attempt to build a better language. She holds a doctorate in linguistics and a first-level certification in Klingon. Follow her on Twitter.

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The sign language interpreter for Mayor de Blasio's press conference was deaf. How does that work?

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11 versions of 'Average Joe' from other countries

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15 tricky words — and how to pronounce them hilariously wrong

Lifestyle

7 overlooked Thanksgiving rituals, according to sociologists

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A linguistic dissection of the 2016 contenders' book title choices

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20 Italian hand gestures, demonstrated by male models

Entertainment

5 baffling foreign-language versions of the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air theme song

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Explained: English's 3 different prefixes for 'half'

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Feast your eyes on this beautiful linguistic family tree

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Dumbbells, barbells, kettlebells: Why do we call weights 'bells'?

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How well does Mark Zuckerberg speak Chinese?

Entertainment

5 baffling foreign-language versions of the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air theme song

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5 words that are spelled weirdly because someone got the etymology wrong

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The secret emotional lives of 5 punctuation marks

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Where did the word 'dude' come from?

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How an awesomesauce new suffix came to be

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11 facts yü should know about the umlaut

Entertainment

The true origin story of the football huddle

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15 words you didn't realize were named after people

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18 apple varieties with badass names

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10 words with difficult-to-remember meanings

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Can y'all be used to refer to a single person?

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15 words plagued by unusual silent letters

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26 fancy, unusual plurals that work like 'attorneys general'

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Why is 'colonel' spelled that way?

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