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Episode 1608

In the Ballpark

Novelist Charles Dickens and the musician Prince were very different types of artists, but they also had a lot in common. A new book chronicling their extraordinary careers becomes a larger meditation on perfectionism and creativity itself. Plus...

Zoris and Tabis

Dexter from San Diego, California, says his family used the word zoris for the footwear other people call flip-flops. In Japan, the word zori refers to a type of footwear made of grass or straw, and English speakers adopted this term in the early...

Alligator Arms

Our conversation about slang terms in various countries to denote someone who’s a tightwad prompts a Minnesota listener to leave a message with his favorite term along these lines. He likes to say that stingy people have alligator arms that...

Jinx! You Owe Me a Book!

You know how when two people accidentally say the same thing simultaneously, they then race to yell Jinx!? There may be hundreds of versions of this game. Anne and her young daughter Amina in Jacksonville, Florida, say versions they’ve heard...

How Much = What’s Their Name

Jack from Sentinel Butte, North Dakota, reports that in his part of the world, people sometimes inquire about a person’s last name with a question that combines the person’s first name with the phrase How Much, as in Jack How Much? This...