A listener was confused when she heard a radio announcer say a man had “Amanda Lynn” in his hands, only to find out that it was “a mandolin.” These funny misheard phrases are called mondegreens, a term coined in Sylvia Wright’s 1954 Harper’s article, “The Death of Lady Mondegreen.” It comes from a mishearing of the song “The Bonny Earl of Moray”: “They have slain the Earl o’ Moray, and laid him on the green.” Another example: “Olive, the other reindeer” for “all of the other reindeer” in the song about Rudolph. Other misheard lyrics. This is part of a complete episode.
- Ring-Tailed Tooter (episode #1563) 02/22/2021: National Book Award winner Barry Lopez had wise advice for young writers. First, read widely and follow your curiosity. Second, travel or learn a foreign... [more]
- What the Blazes? (episode #1562) 02/08/2021: What kind of book do people ask for most often in prison? Romance novels? No. The Bible? No. The most requested books by far are... [more]
- Mudlarking (episode #1561) 01/25/2021: Twice a day the River Thames recedes, revealing a muddy shoreline. Hobbyists known as mudlarks stroll the surface searching for objects that have found their... [more]
- Snaggletooth (episode #1560) 01/11/2021: Many of us struggled with the Old English poem "Beowulf" in high school. But what if you could actually hear "Beowulf" in the English of... [more]
- Like a Boiled Owl (episode #1559) 12/21/2020: What's it like to hike the Pacific Crest Trail all the way from Mexico to Canada? You'll end up with sore muscles and blisters, and... [more]