When halfalogue won’t do

When halfalogue won’t do

Halfalogue :

An overheard one-sided cellphone conversation. (Half + dialogue)

Some backstory on why overheard cellphone conversations are so irritating:

Whether it is the office, on a train or in a car, only half of the conversation is overheard which drains more attention and concentration than when overhearing two people talking, according to scientists at Cornell University.

“We have less control to move away our attention from half a conversation (or halfalogue) than when listening to a dialogue,” said Lauren Emberson, a co-author of the study that will be published in the journal Psychological Science. “Since halfalogues really are more distracting and you can’t tune them out, this could explain why people are irritated,” she said in an interview.

This, part of the new Schott’s Vocab feature, a joined force with the Oxford English Dictionary, offering daily words of note that tend toward the curious, humorous, and other flights of fancy.