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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...

Prince and Dickens

Author Nick Hornby is an ardent fan of both the novelist Charles Dickens and the musician Prince. In Dickens and Prince: A Particular Kind of Genius (Bookshop|Amazon), Hornby shows that those two very different men actually had a lot in common...

Episode 1586

Mittens in Moonlight

Need a slang term that can replace just about any noun? Try chumpie. If you’re from Philadelphia, you may already know this handy placeholder word. And there’s Queens, Brooklyn, Staten Island, Manhattan, and … The Bronx — why do we add...

Chumpie, A Multipurpose Philadelphia Word

Alvin in Huntsville, Alabama, is a fan of the multipurpose noun chumpie, which he learned from a native Philadelphian. He remembers hearing it on the television show The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, when actor Will Smith, who is originally from...

Fill Your Boots

Jonathan, who lives in Dallas, Texas, is originally from Prince Edward Island, Canada, where he often heard the phrase fill your boots, an injunction that means “help yourself.” Variants include dig in and fill your boots, eat up and...

News Limericks 2017

This week’s puzzle by Quiz Guy John Chaneski involves limericks based on notable news from 2017. For example, how would you finish this one? “My dependable British authorities / Say the royals have excellent qualities / Like handsome...