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Episode 1540

Tiger Tail

You may have a favorite word in English, but what about your favorite in another language? The Spanish term ojalá is especially handy for expressing hopefulness and derives from Arabic for “God willing.” In Trinidad, if you want to ask...

Episode 1528

Gift Horse

The edge of the Grand Canyon. A remote mountaintop. A medieval cathedral. Some places are so mystical you feel like you’re close to another dimension of space and time. There’s a term for such locales: thin places. And: did you ever go...

Shoofly Pie

Jim from Abilene, Texas, says his Pennsylvania-born mother, used to bake a molasses-based tart called shoofly pie. The name most likely derives from the action of shooing away flies attracted to the sweet, sticky dessert. Found primarily in her home...

Porkies = Lies

If you’re telling porkies, you’re telling lies. This phrase is from British rhyming slang, where the term pork pie substitutes for lie. This is part of a complete episode.

À La Mode Origin

A slice of pie topped with ice cream is said to be served à la mode, a French phrase that means “in the fashion of.” A listener in Greenfield, Massachusetts, wants to know why. This is part of a complete episode.