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Episode 1532

Off the Turnip Truck

It’s hard to imagine now, but there was a time when people disagreed over the best word to use when answering the phone. Alexander Graham Bell suggested answering with ahoy! but Thomas Edison was partial to hello! A fascinating new book about...

Until a Week of Thursdays

In English, to wait until the cows come home, means you’ll wait a long time. In French, it’s attendre la semaine des quatre jeudis, literally, to “wait for a week of Thursdays.” This is part of a complete episode.

Have a Fat Morning

A French idiom that means “to sleep in” or “lie around lazily in bed after waking” is faire la grasse matinée, literally to “make the fat morning.” If you fall in love easily, you’re said to have un coeur...

Episode 1529

At First Blush

Book recommendations and the art of apology. Martha and Grant share some good reads, including an opinionated romp through English grammar, a Spanish-language adventure novel, an account of 19th-century dictionary wars, and a gorgeously illustrated...

Episode 1527

Had the Radish

Your first name is very personal, but what if you don’t like it? For some people, changing their name works out great but for others it may create more problems than it solves. And: at least three towns in the U.S. were christened with names...

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