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William Safire

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Top William Safire Articles see all

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  • 10 things you might not know about literary enigmas

    10 things you might not know about literary enigmas
    There's no mystery about the best place for book lovers to gather this weekend — it's the Printers Row Lit Fest in the South Loop. But here are other questions about literature that have confounded many:
  • 10 things you might not know about clout

    10 things you might not know about clout
    Call it "sway" or "pull" or "juice" or "clout" — we're talking about power or influence, often of a political nature. Clout may have made one of its frequent Chicago appearances recently when Metra CEO Alex Clifford got a lucrative buyout deal...

    Cliché watch: 'Boots on the ground'

    Stories in the Tribune using the expression "boots on the ground" to refer to military men and women in a combat theater from the mid 1980s (when the digital record begins) until Sept. 24, 2001 -- Zero. ...from Sept. 25,...

    A Word, Please: Don't let language cops impact your words

    There are a lot of people out there who will think less of you if you use “impact” as a verb: A longer storm season will negatively impact tourism. Failure to study will negatively impact your grades. Technology will impact higher education....

    What's so bad about pounding sand?

    Bogard, 37, of Oak Park, said he tried to settle with the village but was unsuccessful. Now he is suing village officials and the Fire Department for damages. "They basically told me to pound sand," he said recently, standing outside...