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Working Titles of Famous Books

One of the greatest novels in all of American literature was originally titled Catch-18. Then Joseph Heller found out that a novel about World War II called Mila 18 already existed. So he changed his book to Catch-22. And guess which American...

“Redneck” Origins

Where does the term redneck come from, and is it derogatory? It goes back at least to the 1830s where it pops up in the Carolinas to refer to a farmer that works in the sun. Over time, people like listener Richard Ramirez of Fort Worth, Texas, have...

Books with a Letter Missing

The Twitter hashtag #Bookswithalettermissing has proved to be a popular one. We discussed some great examples in an earlier episode. But why not take a letter off the author as well? As in, Animal Far by George Owell, the story about an animal that...

Names for Rolling Stops

When a car rolls slowly through a stop sign, it’s often called a California stop or a California roll. But the Midwest has its own monikers for this sneaky move, including the farmer stop, the Chicago stop, and no cop, no stop. This is part of...