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Burning the Coconuts

The Spanish word for “sunroof,” that opening in the top of a car, is quemacocos, which has a picturesque origin. Coco is a slang term for “head,” from the resemblance between that body part and a coconut. And the Spanish word...

A Brown Bear but Not a Brown Bear

A hilarious news story about a pair of heroic terriers that chase off a bear from a California home leads to an equally hilarious correction about the difference between black bears and brown bears. Big ups to Squirt and Mei Mei! This is part of a...

Acronames

Tim and Allison Moyer of Ingram, Texas, care for lots of feral cats in their neighborhood, and refer to them by various names. Often they eventually shorten those names to just initial letters. For example, Calico Kitty becomes simply CK. Is there a...

Dogging a Door

Emily in San Diego, California, wonders about the phrase to dog, meaning “to close and secure” as in to dog a door. In a nautical context, the phrase dog the hatches means to secure them with a bolt or handle designed for that purpose...

Episode 1546

Singing Sand

Cat hair may be something you brush off, but cat hair is also a slang term that means “money.” In the same way, cat beer isn’t alcoholic — some people use cat beer as a joking term for “milk.” And imagine walking on a...