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English Rhyming Slang in the US

English rhyming slang had a short run of popularity in the western U.S., thanks in part to Australians who brought it over (and then, again, thanks to a scene in Ocean’s Eleven). But even in the U.K., it’s now mostly defunct. This is part of a...


The term skinnymalink, or a skinny marink, is one way the Scots refer to someone who’s thin. In the United States, the term goes back to the 1870’s. This is part of a complete episode.

Roof and Hoof?

If you pronounce roof to rhyme with hoof, you’re not alone. Millions of people all over the U.S. say it that way, though the pronunciation with the long o sound is more common. This is part of a complete episode.

Dis, Dat, and Dose

Depending on your ancestry, or where in the country you’re from, you might pronounce the words this that them there and those as dis dat dem dere and dose. This is part of a complete episode.

International Word Competitions

Do spelling bees exist outside the United States? Not really. English is unique for how vast and complicated it is, which makes our bees pretty exciting. In France, they have competitions for taking dictation, and the Chinese hold races for looking...

Slash Symbol

An election official in Arcata, California, wonders how the “/” symbol should be pronounced on ballots for the visually impaired. The symbol is becoming more and more popular as a kind of conjunction. In the U.K., they call it a stroke...