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Put on the Dog

Why isn’t “you’re welcome” the default response to “thank you” for everyone? Plus lies that kids tell, Philadelphia lawyer, cowbelly, skutch, mind-bottling vs. mind-boggling, tsundoku, infanticipating, noisy piece...

Palate vs. Palette

Need a mnemonic to remember difference between the spelling of the palate in your mouth and an artist’s palette? Associate the one in your mouth with the past tense of the verb to eat. This is part of a complete episode.

Flying Pickle

How would you like to be welcomed to married life by friends and neighbors descending on your home for a noisy celebration, tearing off the labels of all your canned foods and scattering cornflakes in your bed? That tradition has almost died out...

Avocado vs. Alvocado

A woman in Puyallup, Washington, disagrees with her husband about the pronunciation of avocado. She pronounces it as if it were spelled alvocado, with an L, but the standard pronunciation is ah-voh-KAH-doh. A small minority of English speakers...

Hell for Leather

Victorian slang and a modern controversy over language and gender. In the early 1900’s, a door-knocker wasn’t just what visitors used to announce their arrival, it was a type of beard with a similar shape. And in the 21st century: Is it...

Door-Knocker Beard

In the 19th century, the slang term door-knocker referred to a beard-and-mustache combo that ringed the mouth in the shape of a metal ring used to tap on a door. This is part of a complete episode.