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Mappine Means Dish Towel

A listener notes that among the many Italian-Americans in Rome, New York, the term mappine is commonly used for dish towel. In some some dialects of Italy, particularly the Piedmont and Neapolitan regions, the word mappina means cloth or towel or...

Spit Baths

Spit baths are another common form of quickie baths, wherein a moist towel is used to wipe schmutz off a child’s face. One fraternity member emailed us to say that when he was in college, over-spraying with cologne in lieu of a shower was...

Paper Towelling

Do you use paper towels or paper towelling? While a listener insists her husband’s wrong for his use of paper towelling, Grant explains how certain nouns take a gerund ending. For example, clothes derive from clothing, and the side of a house...

Celebrate National Grammar Day

Hey, everybody! This past weekend's show was our tribute to National Grammar Day, which is Tuesday, March 4th. Among other things, we talked about "booby trap," the food dish "turkey Manhattan," "lock, stock, and...