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Airplane Bath

Over the years, we’ve had several conversations about terms for washing up quickly without getting in the tub, such as taking a bird bath or a possible bath. A listener chimes in with her family’s version. They take an airplane bath —...

Turn Left at the Whoopsy-Daisy

Linda from Chapel Hill, North Carolina, gives directions to her remote home by telling people to turn left after the whoopsy-daisy, her term for a sudden dip in the road. There are quite a few colloquial expressions for such abrupt depression or...

Episode 1605

Big Bang

A savory Sicilian sausage roll is always a hit for the holidays. This dish goes by a long list of names that are equally delicious to say. Plus, why are those promotional quotes you see on the back of a book called blurbs? The guy who coined the...

Over to Visit or Down to Visit?

Alicia from Prairieville, New York, has a dispute with her new husband over the word over. She said, I’m going over to visit my dad, and he argued that because her father lives southeast of them, she should say going down to visit her dad. Is...

Bunking, Mitching, and Skiving

In the United States, playing hooky from school is often called skipping school. Lots of other terms for truancy throughout the English-speaking world. In South Africa and India, it’s bunking. In England, you might describe that activity as...