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Nickname Stories

Following our earlier conversation about nicknames, listeners are still responding with stories about their own nicknames. Two of those show how nicknames sometimes arise from a single incident, then stick around for years. In one story, a girl...

Rare-Do-Wells Puzzle

Quiz Guy John Chaneski says his wife, the poet Jennifer Michael Hecht, has pointed out that there are some people who shouldn’t be classified as ne’er-do-wells, because every once in a while, they do manage to do something right...

Dictionary of Southern Appalachian English

The splendid new Dictionary of Southern Appalachian English (Bookshop|Amazon), edited by Michael Montgomery and Jennifer Heinmiller, is a greatly expanded version of the Dictionary of Smoky Mountain English (Amazon), edited by Montgomery and Joseph...

Episode 1550

Queen Bee

An artist asks strangers to write haiku about the pandemic and gets back poetic, poignant glimpses of life under lockdown. Plus, the new book Queenspotting features the colorful language of beekeeping! Bees tell each other about a good source of...

Episode 1543

Goody Two-Shoes

She sells seashells by the seashore. Who is the she in this tongue twister? Some claim it’s the young Mary Anning, who went on to become a famous 19th-century British paleontologist. Dubious perhaps, but the story of her rise from seaside...