Do you know what a “buffet flat” is? Is it A) a type of shoe you wear to all-you-can-eat dinners, B) a lull in economic growth predicted by Warren Buffet, or C) a squalid apartment found in the Rocky Mountain States? Find out when Grant gives you the whole megillah.

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  1. dkropp says:

    I had missed that episode. Thanks! Perfectly addressed.

  2. Niel says:

    I was taught ‘the’ with a schwa as the one under current discussion, while the the “long e” (actually a dotted i…) variant indicated emphasis on status as either the sole example (i.e. one and only… “The Holy See” ði ?ho?li si) or most important example (e.g. “The Book” ði b?k, meaning The Bible)

  3. KarlWinthrop says:

    The only things I can think of are sarcastic. I have, in a similar situation, used “OK” with at tone that implied that it was not.

  4. FLUFFY says:

    so the people with the doctor degrees say that coke bugs arent real well I beg the differ.Because as I sit here reading the post I took some crack cocaine and smash it up on a white piece of paper and by the time I finished reading there was black spots all in the coke. They were moving and before I knew it. it was more black spots than coke. I did this test with a sober state of mind

  5. dayofthedave says:

    Why not just “former”? David used this seemingly apt word to describe the problem, then Martha used it again to do the same, and it made me wonder (twice). And now I see it used here in the segment description, not just once, but twice, which doubly makes me double-wonder. Am I missing something about “former” as being an appropriate substitute for “ex”?

  6. dayofthedave says:

    “Baby storm”, “Dad-fest”, “Dad-bash”, “Papapalooza”, or if you want to be really edgy try “Baby shower”.

  7. indulginginsin says:

    I know this is an old post, and I know most of you have zero experience in the matter and are all just mouthing off. And given the subject matter, I can’t blame you and you absolutely have the right.

    But here’s the thing, @wonder bug wasn’t completely out of scope. I’ll give you a little background.

    Years ago I used to be an avid IV user of cocaine. When I got to the point where I did too much in a sitting, I first experienced this phenomenon.

    Now I didn’t think invisible bugs were crawling out of my skin, but I did feel the sensation that made me jerk around to see if there was something there. News flash, really wasn’t. But I’d be jumpy as all get up.

    Pretty much a clear and cut case of psychosis right? And if I stared long enough, due to the toxins in me, my eyes would get a bit fuzzy, so I couldn’t ever determine for sure.

    Now I’m a very logical person. So I’d rope my friends who didn’t partake in to watch this take place. Like the sheet experiment, my clothes would exhibit the same thing. Certain spots would draw out with seemingly no outside influence.

    After I stopped my IV use I’d still do the occasional line with no such side effects. But the odd time I was in a situation where I ended up doing much more than that, the same effects would start to surface.

    The larger the span of time between usage the less the effect. All lines up with psycosis.

    But here’s the thing, while there’s no doubt there’s a heavily psychological affect, there was also this physical one. The sheet/shirt “pulling” on its own, frayed strands of clothing sticking out much more than normal (one checks prior to using), near invincible threads attached to ones body, hair being drawn toward something (upwards, towards a specific spot on the body regardless of position) and a few others.

    I’ve hypothesized a few causes. Toxins in the body making your skin react. This body hair reacts and moves differently and with more gusto than normal. Would explain the shirt drawing away from the body, but not the sheet.

    The other is the affect could be something that changes the static electricity of the body. This could explain not only the shirt and sheet, but also the hair, fuzz, and threads that appear abundant when in the thick of it.

    Whether the psychological affects influence the physical or visa versa is unknown to me. But by bringing in outside validations , not believing there was bugs in my drugs or really on my body , but absolutely feeling the both physical and psychological affects with varying degrees of use, something is happening.

    And if you think about all the completely different ways psychosis can manifest itself, the sheer numbers of incidents where people experience it in the exact same way, leads me to believe that something more is going on.

    One that doesn’t necessarily involve near invisible bugs, but one that could explain the physical side of things.

    Love some more serious input on this. I don’t really partake much anymore, but still curious of the why.

  8. afgrove says:

    I can’t help but wonder if there is some connection between the work kimble, the confident rolling strut, and the word gimbal, a pivoted support that allows the rotation of an object about a single axis. Just a thought…

  9. BMarie says:

    Hi. Just found your website and podcast. I am intrigued by the use of “get down” in Burqueno slang. I live in Augusta, GA, and grew up in the country near here. I tend to think of that as a rural country term. My father would use it in reference to trucks. For instance, if you are a kid, riding in a truck with your father, and he took you somewhere you didn’t want to go, and perhaps you are dawdling and don’t want to get out, he might get annoyed and shout, “GET DOWN OUT OF THE TRUCK!!” It was always my thought that it was because of the height of the vehicle, although sometimes someone might accidentally say. “get down out of the car.” My uncle had a pony, and we would also, “Get down off the horse”– as opposed to getting off the horse. Because horses and ponies are tall. So you get down off of it. I don’t know the history of it, but that’s how it was used when I was young. I am 40. I don’t live in the country anymore, so I don’t know if this use is dying or not. I would have thought, if I heard that in Albequerque, that it had to do with a rural history and truck/horse use, as opposed to a Spanish link.

  10. dulcimoo says:

    It happens with Other languages as well. My wife and many of her friends come from the PRC or Taiwan. They often speak English with Chinese grammar. Many times the English isn’t quite correct English. Often Chinese words or idioms sneak in the English conversations; everyone refers to this version of Chinese English, Chinglish.

  11. Danny says:

    This reminds me of a friend who lived in Israel for a time, and who reports the common use of “Shalom-bye!” as a farewell greeting. Importantly, however, the greeting is said as though “shalom-bye” is one word.

  12. yungavocado says:

    If i’m going to be truthful here, which is something my dead mother does love, I’d tell you that I’ve never really been shook in my life, therefore the need for this argument is invalid, as ive never needed to use the word. Recently, I’ve been shooken with crippling depression, which leaves me in a state of “woah” or “whoa” on a daily basis. Tasks that were simple to me, now leave me with that tiny little word, dripping from my mouth. If someone would like to actually gather some information, meet me at the park. Love you mom.

  13. Bianco says:

    Its been years and its still going on. I filed a lawsuit Jan. 30 2017 against Shiv Sakti Investments Llc. owners of many hotels in Los Angeles . I was a victim of the 28 day shuffle at the Bonnie Lee in Wilminton and Palos Verdes in San Pedro Ca.along with many others. my Class Action Lawsuit will be for all who were victimized by this unjust. Its illegal and must be stopped.

  14. John Scott says:

    re. neb/nib to mean nose

    The words for “beak” (as in a bird’s beak) in the Scandinavian languages is:

    næb (Danish), näbb (Swedish), nebb (Norwegian).

    I think the origin of the word would be pretty obvious for someone who speaks Swedish, Danish or Norwegian –especially as Martha points out that it is primarily associated with northern England and Scotland, the parts of present-day UK that were most influenced by invasion and settlement from Scandinavia.

    In modern Swedish, näbb means the beak (including nose) of a bird. The Scandinavian words for nose are not very similar to neb/nib.

    I’ve always guessed that the verb “nab” (as in to catch, grab, snatch) is somehow also derived from the Scandinavian næb/näbb/nebb, maybe an association with the way birds grab objects with their beaks.

    On a related subject, in many cases I hear the origin of many English words attributed to German, when the link to Scandinavian languages is really more obvious. Etymologists often seem to be reaching past the more-obvious Norse links to try to find a more-tenuous association with German. I just assume it is probably due to the fact that English speakers are much more likely to be familiar with German than Swedish, Danish or Norwegian. Of course, over the centuries, the evolution of the English language has been very deeply influenced by both Germanic and Scandinavian people, though I think the Scandinavian influence is more recent.

  15. John Scott says:

    re. neb/nib to mean nose

    The words for “beak” (as in a bird’s beak) in the Scandinavian languages is:

    næb (Danish), näbb (Swedish), nebb (Norwegian).

    I think the origin of the word would be pretty obvious for someone who speaks Swedish, Danish or Norwegian –especially as Martha points out that it is primarily associated with northern England and Scotland, the parts of present-day UK that were most influenced by invasion and settlement from Scandinavia.

    In modern Swedish, näbb means the beak (of a bird). The modern Scandinavian words for nose (näsa) are not very similar to neb/nib, but then then Nordic influence on English was happening about 1000 years ago..

    I’ve always guessed that the verb “nab” (as in to catch, grab, snatch) is somehow also derived from the Scandinavian næb/näbb/nebb, maybe an association with the way birds grab objects with their beaks.

    On a related subject, in many cases I hear the origin of many English words attributed to German, when the link to Scandinavian languages seems to be more obvious. Etymologists often seem to be reaching past the more-obvious Norse links to try to find an association with German. I just assume it is probably due to the fact that English speakers are much more likely to be familiar with German than Swedish, Danish or Norwegian. Of course, over the centuries, the evolution of the English language has been very deeply influenced by both Germanic and Scandinavian people, though I think the Scandinavian influence is more recent.

  16. Goldin says:

    I heard this today….my dad has always us “booby” as a term of endearment. He had told me that it was Yiddish. Not like “Bubbie” (grandma) but pronounced “booby”.

  17. polistra says:

    I suspect the fancy stuff about the heavenly meaning of Ahura-mazda was tacked on later. The founder was Matsuda, which would be pronounced Masda in rapid speech. He wanted to pick a less confusing spelling for Westerners. Mazda was already familiar as a brand of light bulbs.

  18. adkins9b says:

    In my family we use the term Unky or Unty (contraction of uncle & aunty), depending on one’s preference.

  19. John Scott says:

    First thing that came to mind when listening to this discussion was Texas Ranger La Boeuf’s retort to Rooster Cogburn in “True Grit”: “You’ve been hoorah-ed by a little girl!”

  20. dayofthedave says:

    How about some variants with “kin” as the root? This word on its own already offers a way to describes one’s familial relations without any reference to gender.

    Something like “kinner” or “kinny” could be used to describe an aunt/uncle. The latter seems well suited for forms of address, like Kinny Dylan or Kinny Diane.

    You could also use this form to neutrally describe grandparents with words like “grandkin”, “grandkinner” and “grandkinny”.

    For the other direction, just add a D into the mix, and the word “kinder” seems to work pretty naturally to describe one’s nieces and nephews (or any children a grown-up might feel responsible for).

  21. polistra says:

    I just ran across a use of cold turkey in a 1929 ‘Radio Retailing’ magazine. Clearly means cold calling. If the drug-related use had also been common at the time, I doubt that a magazine would have used the phrase.

    Dealers should not forget — particularly at the outset of their efforts — that cold turkey work is not synonymous with doorbell pounding. While the personal, outside canvass is undoubtedly the most thorough of all soliciting media, the telephone runs it a close and effective second.

  22. PhoebeY says:

    A steamed stuffed bun was walking on the street and he felt hot. So he took off his coat and then he became a meatball. XD

  23. NC777 says:

    Very insightful podcast 😀 Aside from spelling issues, I also have another problem with the interjection ‘Whoa’ — it’s often confused with ‘Wow’. Both are different in tone and meaning. While ‘wow’ can be used express both sarcasm and surprise, ‘whoa’ can only express surprise. Watch this Youtube video and see what you think. I could be wrong.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nidqrK0p3i0

  24. Greg says:

    I’ve always assumed this came from the fact they were on the front of the truck. As in the lights you see when you’re “playing chicken.”

  25. schlubbubomagee says:

    I first came across this word in Kurt Vonnegut’s Galápagos–he uses to describe someone showering — as in “potching around in the shower”

  26. Belgian says:

    The roots of this way of using the prefix “un-” seem to go back to Germanic and Latin languages. The Dutch translation of the word “unthaw” is “ontdooien” but the prefix “ont-” has a double meaning in Dutch. It can mean “not”, like the English “un-” as well as “to initiate an action” which is similar to the English prefixes “in-” and “en-” as used in “inflame”, “inquire”, “enlighten” and maybe also the “a” in “awake”, “arise”.

    There are several other Dutch, German and French words in which the prefixes “ont/ent/en” are still used to indicate the initiation of an action:
    – ontbijten (Dutch for to have breakfast): literally “start to bite”
    – ontvlammen (Dutch), entflammen (German), enflammer (French): to inflame
    – ontbranden (Dutch), entbrennen (German): to ignite
    – ontstaan (Dutch), entstehen (German): to arise. Literally “to initiate to stand”
    – ontsteken (Dutch): to enkindle
    – ontwaken (Dutch): to awake

  27. Belgian says:

    This expression also exists in Dutch as “uit zijn nek kletsen” or “uit zijn nek praten” and it originates from phrenology. Phrenology was a science from the beginning of the 19th century that investigated the relation between a person’s brain and mental capacity. One of the methods was to measure skulls and link certain shapes with certain skills and characteristics.

    This science had big impact on the 19th century society starting in the academic world and later also in the other sections of society. This resulted in expressions such as “to talk out of your neck” (talking nonsense) and other Dutch words such as “talenknobbel” which stands for a head for languages but it literally means “language lump or language knob”. It was believed that the language lump was above the eye. In Dutch the word “knobbel” referring to a lump or knob in the brain is used to refer to intellectual abilities including maths, science, etc.

  28. flowbeus says:

    I think Woah is a good thing.

    There’s two different meanings here and I think having different spellings is just fine.

    I use Whoa when I want to say: “Stop!” or “Hold up!”

    I use Woah for amazement, especially under-the-breath amazement. As a result the trailing H is justified due to the onomatopoeia.

    John Wayne says “Whoa!” Keanu Reeves says “Woah.” But there are distinct meanings here.

    Since clarity is important to me, I will continue to consciously use these two different words in their correct context.

  29. sgolden says:

    The discussion of mmm-bye was a delight. A year ago, my South African friend asked me why Americans insist on saying “buh-bye” and “mmm-bye.” Before she asked, I had never consciously heard mmm-bye before. Now I seem to hear it all the time! Anyway, ever since she and I talked about mmm-bye last year, we simply end the calls between us with “mmm.”

  30. bnevins says:

    I think the word comes from the Polish word “duza” which means large. When I remember hearing the word in the 1970’s, it usually meant something especially large or difficult. The appearance of the word in English coincides with a time when many Polish and eastern European immigrants were coming to this country.

  31. WordWorm says:

    The first week I moved to Massachusetts, the grocery store person asked me, “Do you need a carriage?” I kept staring at him and asking him to repeat his question. He said it four times before I realized he was talking about a shopping cart.

  32. ffossjr says:

    Love to see the baseball references here. I was wondering if you got “High Cheese” correct. My understanding, from listening to Dennis Eckersley do the color commentary for Red Sox games, was that high cheese was a relatively quick fastball (cheese) at the top of the strikezone (high). In some uses, it even seems like High Cheese can just be a fastball near the batter’s face, whether it is a strike or not. Usually, the hitter cannot catch up to the “High Cheese.” Here Eckersley gives a fun breakdown on the different types of cheese. I particularly like “Sneaky Cheese” and “Educated Cheese.” (https://vimeo.com/16060249, Hope it’s okay to post a link.)

  33. ffossjr says:

    I love to see baseball terminology here. I am wondering if you got “High Cheese” correct. My understanding, from listening to Dennis Eckersley do the commentary for Red Sox games, was that high cheese was a relatively quick fastball (cheese) at the top of the strikezone (high). In some uses, it even seems like High Cheese can just be a fastball near the batter’s face, whether it is a strike or not. Usually, the hitter cannot catch up to the “High Cheese.” Here Eckersley gives a fun breakdown on the different types of cheese. I particularly like “Sneaky Cheese” and “Educated Cheese.” (Left the link out of this post, but you can search for TBS MLB Analyst Dennis Eckersley gives a lesson on “Cheese”)

  34. elnest.bantolo says:

    i know this is an old thread but in Philippines we call it the “Dyahe” piece.

  35. elnest.bantolo says:

    i know this is an old thread but if it helps we call it the “Dyahe” piece in Philippines.

  36. Rasta says:

    My dad uses the expression “doesn’t know from Adam”.

  37. John Scott says:

    In modern Swedish, “dal” is a valley, or relatively low land. “dell” and “dale” are likely related.

  38. hwgray says:

    We used it in my family in East Texas. I Googled the term several years ago and found a post by someone from Washington, DC, noting that his grandmother used it.

  39. Don Bunch says:

    My mother told me once that she couldn’t see through me. I laughed and repeated a phrase she used on me, “My daddy wasn’t a glassmaker!” She quickly replied, “No, but you sure are a pain (pane)!”

  40. hwgray says:

    As Snagglepuss once said, ca. 1959: “That turns my record over! Like, on the _flip_ side!” It’s a reference to the B side of _any_ record and especially the B side of 78-rpm records. These records were rarely over three minutes long on a side and flipping the record over to its B side in order to hear the rest of the story and/or music was often necessary, as in the case of the multi-record albums, _A Christmas Carol_ and _Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs_, e.g. in the case of the latter, “I’m Wishing” and “One Song” on one side, “Dwarfs’ Yodel Song” on the flip side. The use of “flip side” was popularized by the disk-jockeys, such as DDT (Darrell “Downbeat” Turner), of the Post-War – i.e. WWII – era.

  41. jeffinity says:

    As a Californian born and lifer, with a Navy dad and two Navy brothers, closest port being Port Hueneme, and as a one-year adolescent Sea Coast Cadet, I had never heard the term “watch cap” before. It makes sense though. And as I recall, the only color you could get them in was Navy blue. Most of us in Ventura County called it a “beanie.” I’m also familiar with zories and thongs. And you’re right about “Cali,” that just grates on my native ears! If they want to shorten it why not the proper “Calif” since the root word of California is from the Arab “Kalif/Calif/Kalifate/Caliphate” family.

    The other thing about knit caps in California: WHY?! For that cold night the temp drops below 55?!

  42. John Scott says:

    Thanks for the book tip!!
    Dö (die/dead/death) städning (cleaning or tidying).
    Swedish is a more agglutinative language than English, so something that requires as many as 3 or 4 words in English can be expressed with a single, long word in Swedish. e.g. “yrkeskompetensbevis” (certification of professional competency), or “lastbilsförare” (truck driver).

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