Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Foreign Word: figo

figo (adjective) [fee-go]:

Italian slang for cool.

Ford (the car company) today unveiled a small car for India called the Ford Figo. With this nomenclature, Ford joins car companies who've named their cars after European words. A couple of examples:
  • Fiat: Grande, Linea

  • Maruti Suzuki: Zen Estilo

Can you think of any other such cars?

Monday, September 21, 2009

Fashion Week Special: Mini Skirt

It's fashion week in Mumbai, New York and London. So let's delve into the the story behind fashion's iconic garment- the mini skirt.

The mini skirt, or just the mini, was first designed by Mary Quant, an English fashion designer. However, it was French designer André Courrèges who made it popular when he included the mini in his 1965 spring/summer collection.

And why was it called the "mini"? The theory goes that Quant's favourite car- the BMW Mini- inspired her to name her new garment the mini!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Buzzword: Austere

austere (adjective): [osteer]

This word has several meanings, but in the recent discussions on the Congress Party's cost-cutting driving, the meaning is:
  1. simple; lacking comforts and luxuries; without excess

  2. Other meanings are:
  3. stern, serious or harsh in appearance, manner or behaviour
  4. morally strict

Example: Rahul Gandhi went austere with his Shatabdi train ride in chair car from Delhi to Ludhiana and back earlier this week.

Monday, September 14, 2009

New Word: Passionista

passionista (noun):

Someone who is passionate about an interest or brand.

This word was apparently coined by Yahoo! and Media Vest after a 2007 study into online consumer behaviour.

Our view is that while this word may or may not catch on, what's true is that the two companies did the best they could to try to create a new buzzword, which they hoped would catch on.

Word of the Day: cogitate

cogitate (verb) [ko-ji-teyt]:

to meditate, think hard.

Example: Shyam took his time to cogitate on the various career options before him- a Masters, an MBA or the civil services?

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Buzzword: Partisanship

partisanship (noun) [paar-ti-zan-ship]:

  1. Strong, unbiased support to a cause, person or organisation.

  2. Member of a secret armed party (like a guerrilla band)

Example: Former first lady Laura Bush criticized excessive partisanship of Washington in a recent interview with CNN.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Buzzword: Impasse

impasse (noun) [im-pass OR am-pass]:
A situation, road or path in which progress is impossible; or with no escape.

Similar words: deadlock, dead end.

Example: "The impasse has been broken," Commerce and Industry Minister Anand Sharma said last week about the breakthrough in global trade talks.