Spectacular vs. Spooktacular

“Spectacular” is a very positive (good) word in English. It is related to the word “spectacle” which usually means something impressive or good to see.

Here are some synonyms for “spectacular” in everyday usage:
Super
Awesome
Terrific
Great
Superb
Excellent
Fantastic
Wonderful
Marvelous

Now… about “Spooktacular.”

“Spooky” in English means scary, eerie, weird, frightening. We use this word a lot in association with the holiday of Halloween.

For example: A spooky ghost; a spooky costume; a spooky house; a spooky decoration.

English speakers love to do “word play.” That means making one word sound like another word. Or, combining two words into one. (Like, “chillax” which is “chill” and “relax.”)

So, something really great or awesome that is on or around Halloween is “spooktacular.”

We hope you have a very spooktacular Halloween next week!

It will be very common to see Halloween events using this name. We found these and many more on the internet easily.

What Does it Mean to be Called a Nut?

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Have you ever heard of the “Nutty Professor?” Has anyone ever said you were nuts?

Calling someone a “nut” in English can be an insult. It means that person is crazy or acting in an insane manner.

But, just like the word “crazy,” there are times when it can be a good thing. For example: “I’m crazy in love with you” is probably a good thing.

Similarly, you could say “I’m nuts about you,” which means I like or love you A LOT.

Here are some example sentences in which “nut” or “nuts” may be an insult (a bad thing) or a way of saying someone is crazy or insane:

“Wow, your boss is totally nuts.”

“I can’t believe he said that. That is nuts!”

There are also variants of this word which have a similar, negative meaning:

“Don’t talk to him. He’s totally nutso.”

“Don’t ask her out to dinner. She’s a real nutjob.”

There are also phrases from go + nuts, such as:

“Be careful! Your roommate is going nuts.”

“I’m sorry but your boyfriend has gone completely nuts.”

The insult of “nuts” can be made a little less intense by changing it to “nutty.” This might mean the person is a little weird or different. Here’s an example:

“I like your brother, I really do. He’s just a little bit nutty.”

Lastly, let’s not forget there are times when being crazy for something is a good thing. Like being crazy for healthy food or exercise. We might say:

“Wow I didn’t know David was such a health food nut.”

“He’s really nuts about his new job.”

“Saul is a crazy good artist.” (“Crazy” here acts like an adverb, similar to “very”)

My high school Spanish teacher always called us his “bag of mixed nuts.” Mixed nuts are the nuts you buy from the supermarket and eat. He meant that in a nice way, as in we were crazy but he liked us.

Here are some other slang synonyms for nuts: wacko (adj/noun), psycho (adj/noun), loony (adj/noun), weirdo (noun), freak (noun), maniac (noun), messed up (adj), cray cray (adj)

Here are some images we found online when we typed “crazy nut”:

What vocabulary should you learn before taking TOEFL & IELTS?

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If you are planning on taking the TOEFL some time this year, you are probably not a beginner in English. On the other hand, in order to get the score you want, you may want to (or need to) improve your vocabulary knowledge.

If you are planning to take the TOEFL (or other high-stakes standardized test in English), what are the best words to learn?

The TOEFL and other such tests emphasize academic English. That is, English used in university classes, essays, and discussions (formal and informal).

Lucky for you, we live in a time when computers can analyze the language in the university and help us understand which words are most common in a university setting. Today, we know which words are most common in the universities. Likewise, understanding and using these words are essential for success on the TOEFL.

To start, you should learn these TOP 60 ACADEMIC WORDS IN ENGLISH: https://www.vocabulary.com/lists/23710

You may know some or all these words. Once you’ve learned all of these, we recommend moving on to the full AWL list (Academic Word List), provided here: http://www.cal.org/create/conferences/2012/pdfs/handout-4-vaughn-reutebuch-cortez.pdf