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Little Pitchers

Did you know reading poetry improves your prose? That includes hip-hop lyrics, too.  Also, how linguist can guess where you come from based on how you speak.  What do you call someone who picks the chocolate out of the trail mix...


Looking glegged up, with staring into space with the mouth agape, comes from glegged, which shows up in some old dialect dictionaries meaning “to look askance.” This is part of a complete episode.

By the Seat of Your Pants

Dude! We’re used to hearing the word “dude” applied to guys. But increasingly, young women use the word “dude” to address each other. Grant and Martha talk about linguistic research about the meaning and uses of...

German Influence on Wisconsin Dialect

In parts of Wisconsin where the dialect is heavily influenced by German, it’s not unusual to hear phrases, like “Let’s go buy some bakery” for “let’s buy some baked goods,” and “from little on...


Is Hoosier a derogatory term? People from Indiana proudly embrace it, but in the dialect island that is the St. Louis area, the word means someone who is uncouth or uncultured. In Southern Appalachia, the related words hoodger, and hoojer still...

Dialects of Crayon

Do you pronounce crayon like crown? This common variation tends to be a Midlands pronunciation. Americans may pronounce this word several ways, as this dialect map shows. This is part of a complete episode.

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