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“To Boot” Origins

Maribel in Montgomery, Alabama, asks about why we say to boot to mean in addition. This kind of boot has nothing to do with the kind you wear on your feet. It’s from Old English bot, meaning advantage or remedy, and is a linguistic relative of...

Shoelace Express

Sarah in Fairbanks, Alaska, has a term to add to our discussion about colloquial terms for traveling on foot, like shank’s mare, chevrolegs, and getting a ride with Pat and Charlie: taking the shoelace express. This is part of a complete...

Peace Symbol Origins

A Huntsville, Alabama, man asks: What’s the origin of the peace symbol? A good resource on its history is Peace: The Biography of a Symbol, by Ken Kolsbun. This is part of a complete episode.

Slammed Meaning Busy

A worker in Montgomery, Alabama, doctor’s office reports that when the office is extremely busy, she and her colleagues will say “We’re slammin‘” or “We’re slammed.” It’s a common expression in...