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Like a Boiled Owl (episode #1559)

What’s it like to hike the Pacific Crest Trail all the way from Mexico to Canada? You’ll end up with sore muscles and blisters, and great stories to tell. Along the way, you’ll also pick up some slang, like NoBo, SoBo, Yo-yo and...

Bring Your Mop for a Whang

The word whang is an old term used in New England, particularly Maine. It’s an annual party where you invite your friends and neighbors to help you with the drudgery of spring cleaning. This is part of a complete episode.

Plat Neighborhood

Dan from Atlantic Beach, Florida, grew up in southwestern Ohio, where he and his friends and family referred to their neighborhoods as plats, as in “What plat do you live in?” To plat a place is jargon for the process of making a...

Counting Out Words for Approximate Seconds

Jim in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, says that during childhood games of touch football, he and his friends would count out the required three seconds before rushing as Mississippi one, Mississippi two, Mississippi three. Other ways of counting...

Devil Strip

Terry, a native of Akron, Ohio, is curious why it seems no one outside of his hometown uses the term devil strip to mean “the narrow band of grass between sidewalk and street.” Devil strip was formerly used this way in a few other...

Fiddlesticks

Dawn in Evansville, Indiana, wonders why we dismiss something as nonsense by exclaiming Fiddlesticks! The term arose in the 17th century, most likely because the bow for a fiddle is light, thin, and insubstantial, or in other words...

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