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Light a Shuck

Light a shuck means “to skedaddle” or “leave quickly,” and is often found in cowboy literature. It’s a reference to moving quickly while using a burning corn shuck to light one’s way, and may also be influenced by...

Powder River, Let ’Er Buck

John from Bremerton, Washington, is puzzled by a radio announcer’s use of the hortatory phrase Powder River! Let ’er buck! The rollicking, rootin’-tootin’ story of this phrase is told in Western Words: A Dictionary of the American West, an...

Lamming

The modifier lamming or lammin’, is used as an intensifier, as in “That container is lammin’ full,” meaning “That container is extremely full.” There’s a whole class of intensifying words like this in...

Pecorous

A cowboy loves a ranch that’s pecorous, meaning abundant with cattle. Just something worth knowing. This is part of a complete episode.

I Ride An Old Paint

An Indiana woman is puzzled about a phrase in the old western song, “I Ride An Old Paint”: “I’m goin’ to Montana to throw the houlihan.” What’s a houlihan? You’ll find one version of the lyrics here...