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Jockey Box

A bartender wonders about the origin of the term jockey box. In his world, a jockey box is a metal container for ice. However, in some parts of the western U.S., a jockey box is the glove compartment of a car, and much earlier, the term referred to...

Tickets to the Gun Show

Why do we call our biceps guns? The slang lexicographer Jonathon Green suggests that the metaphor first pops up in baseball around the 1920s, when players referred to their throwing arms as guns. Believe it or not, the early baseball pitchers...

Hooch

An Indianapolis listener says her family often refers to strong liquor as hooch, and wonders where that term comes from. The hosts trace the term’s path from an Indian village in Alaska. This is part of a complete episode.

Horseradish

A Burlington, Vermont, caller wants to know: Is horseradish so named because of this root’s strong resemblance to part of a horse’s anatomy? This is part of a complete episode.

leggy

leggy  adj.— «When plants did come up, they were undeniably “leggy,” meaning their central stalks were tall and spindly before their first leaves. Seedlings won’t necessarily die from being leggy, but they don’t grow up to be as healthy or...

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