Anagramming — rearranging the letters in an existing word or phrase to form something new — is a hugely popular form of wordplay seen today in puzzles and games such as Jumble, Scrabble, Words with Friends, and cryptic crosswords. Explaining the continuing popularity of anagrams would require several thousand words, but I can get to the heart of the matter with just one: magic. Not that I think actual magic is involved, mind you, just that it sometimes seems that way. After all, a skilled anagrammatist can turn, say, statement into testament in a couple of seconds. And when you learn that an anagram for astronomer is moon starer, the accompanying psychological mixture of surprise, delight, and mystery is akin to what we feel when a magician pulls off a clever trick.
All this is by way of introduction to one of my favourite new anagram tricks: a bot that looks for Twitter posts that are anagrams of each other. That’s magical enough, but the ANAGRAMMATRON, as it’s called, has a knack for finding anagrammatical tweets that complement each other. Here are some recent examples:
I have so many haters / Heart is so heavy man
I need my own spot, seriously / Spend your emotions wisely
Such a bad mood tonight / Hot bath and good music
OMG I am so sad right now / Mariah got mood swings
[ANAGRAMMATRON is on Twitter and Tumblr; h/t Ben Zimmer]