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Lean on Your Own Dinner

Sam from Abilene, Texas, wonders about the phrase lean on your own dinner, which can be used literally to mean “support your own weight rather than leaning against me,” or metaphorically, as in suggesting someone refrain from asking...

Episode 1557

Sock it to Me

In the 15th century, the word respair meant “to have hope again.” Although this word fell out of use, it’s among dozens collected in a new book of soothing vocabulary for troubled times. Plus, baseball slang: If a batter...

Tiffin Meal

Nick from San Antonio, Texas, says his father used to use the word tiffin to denote a meal or snack made of leftovers. It’s a word borrowed from Indian English which was itself borrowed from the English verb tiff, which means “to eat or...

Slushburger

Sarah from Moorhead, Minnesota, emailed a story from her early days of teaching in North Dakota. While reading the lunch menu to her students, she was flabbergasted to see that the day’s fare included something called slushburgers. She’d...

Al Desko

To eat al desko is a joking term for having lunch at work without leaving the office. It’s a play on al fresco, meaning “in the openair.” This is part of a complete episode.

Pharmacist Eponymous Law

Our discussion of eponymous laws prompted Peg Brekel of Casa Grande, Arizona, to send us one based on her years of experience in a pharmacy, where she had to keep minding the counter even during her lunch break. Peg’s Law: The number of...