S1: Hello, I’m Nicole Holliday, a linguistics professor at the University of Pennsylvania, and
S2: I’m Ben Zimmer, language columnist for The Wall Street Journal.
S1: And this is spectacular vernacular, a podcast where we not only explore language.
S2: We also play with it.
S1: This week, our guest is Everdeen Mason, editorial director for games at the New York Times and later crossword puzzle editor. Peter Gordon turns the tables on us and challenges us with a wordplay quiz. Ben I see you’ve been busy keeping up with your writing on the language beat. I stumbled across your recent piece in the Wall Street Journal column. You have, and it was about who day. So for me as an Ohioan, I was delighted to see that.
S2: Yeah, that was definitely a fun one to write.
S1: Do you want to say a bit about who day four are not Ohio listeners?
S2: Right? So fans of the NFL team in Cincinnati, the Bengals, who unfortunately just lost the Super Bowl, have a fairly distinctive chant that goes Who day? Great, great. So as we heard there, the chant goes, who day, who day, who they think are going to beat them Bengals and when it’s chanted at the Cincinnati Home Games, the crowd responds with nobody.
S1: That’s definitely an unusual chant. So in the piece, you dig into the history of it a little bit. Where did it come from?
S2: Well, most of the early media pieces about it are from the early 1980s, and researchers have looked into it, including me. I did a lot of kind of research in newspaper archives, and the first time that chant starts getting mentioned is in the 1981 82 season of the Cincinnati Bengals, when they went all the way to the Super Bowl but lost to the San Francisco 49ers. So, you know, there was actually a particular fan named Frankie Bennett, who was credited in one newspaper account and supposedly, you know, he came up with this while he was with his friends, who were often at an Irish pub and they went to a Bengals game. And so that was one story of where this all came from. There have been a lot of stories over the years, and so for instance, in 2015, the Cincinnati Enquirer ran a whole series of letters to the editor from Bengals fans sharing their own tales of how the who they chant got started. And Frank or Frankie Ben it got mentioned again there. Lots of the locals told a popular story attached to the chant, which relates to a local Cincinnati beer from the Hoople Brewing Company. So as the story goes, they say the beer vendors shortened who to bowl to hoodie or who hoodie to advertise at the stadium. Or, you know, the beer vendors would chant this out. And this led to a call and response chant from the fans who were there.
S1: So this is very nice football history. But what’s the point of interest for our language fans?
S2: Well, football fans may also be familiar with a similar chant that’s used by fans of the New Orleans Saints. And instead of who day, they say, Who dat?
S3: Who? People say, Oh, that’s weird.
S1: So it seems to put a wrinkle in the beer story, for sure. And now thinking more about New Orleans, I’m starting to suspect that both who day and who dat may have come from African-American English or E, because in Asia, there are two patterns that would give rise to this kind of chant. First, there’s a feature called Zero Copula, which means that the phrase is expressed without an overt is or are. So in this case, instead of who are they? You get Hooray. And the second thing is that the pronunciation of they kind of makes me think this. So in that case, the T-H at the beginning of the day gets pronounced as a de, which is a common feature of African-American English called H Stopping. So is it possible that both of these chants actually originate from a few speakers?
S2: Well, that’s certainly a theory, and it definitely seems to be the case for who dat at least. So, for instance, in 2010, there was an article in The Root by Hollis Robins, a scholar of African-American literature who talked about this phrase Who dat? And how it has roots in vernacular poetry of the 19th century and was popularized by black entertainers. And it’s notable that before the Saints got to it, who dat was getting used as a chant in sort of local high school and college sports in the region, going back to at least the late 70s? So, for instance, in Patterson, Louisiana, there’s a high school there, the Patterson High School and their team is the lumberjacks. You know, they had their own cheer at basketball games that went, Who dat talking about beating them jacks? And then Alcorn State, which is a historically black college in nearby Mississippi, had a similar chant. And you were still trying to figure out exactly how old that was, but at Alcorn State, they were using a who dat chant as early as 1979, perhaps earlier. Then it got picked up. Other places like Louisiana State University and Baton Rouge started using it circa 81, and then the Saints finally picked it up around 1983. This is a point of contention between Bengals fans and Saints fans who used it first. You know, is it the Bengals fans with who Day Saints fans with who dat? Even if the Saints fans only got to who dat in 83 after the Bengals fans were already saying, Who do this? Who dat chant does have this earlier history that’s important to take into account. So the popularity of Who Day in Cincinnati and Who Dat in New Orleans does tell us something about the fan bases in these cities. Kelly Wright, who’s a socio linguist at the University of Michigan who studies sports and racialized language, says that the similarity in these chants stems, in my opinion, from the blackness of the cities that these teams call home.
S1: Yeah, it seems plausible that even if it wasn’t sort of this like formal chant that everybody was like putting on t shirts and stuff until the 80s, that just the fact that there is a large black fan base in both of these places could give rise to that. You know who and that are very common words or who, and they are very common words. So I’m in agreement with Kelly right there. It seems like embedded in these chants, then, is likely to be some history of their black communities, the cities that they’re in. But then why were the Bengals fans who wrote to the Cincinnati Enquirer back in 2015 just determined to be convinced that the origin was the beer?
S2: Well, the chant does have a long association with the beer brand, and many Bengals fans have written to me to point this out since I wrote the column. And it’s true that as early as 1982, so that’s, you know, about a year after we start finding mentions of the WHO they chant, the Hoodoo Brewing Company was capitalizing on the popularity of the chant by marketing a special Bengal themed can of beer with who day on it spelled It’s U DUI. But, you know, etymology can be pretty challenging, and you know, the beer tail may be appealing as a local story. But, you know, there’s a lot more to this, I think. I mean, especially if we consider who day and who dat together and the fact that they have these features that are so connected to African-American English and keeping in mind that A&I is often subject to stigma. So it might just be that the fans are less likely to notice or appreciate that possible origin story.
S1: That certainly seems likely based on my research on a E as well. We’re in Black History Month, so I’ve been thinking a lot about the contributions of African-Americans to the U.S. history and culture, but also the way the language is used here. So anybody who’s ever said the word cool has benefited from the existence of African-American English because that’s where that word comes from, too. And the influence of a e on other varieties is just undeniable. But because of a long history of racism, as well as harmful ideologies about what is, quote unquote proper English, it gets derided sort of all over the place. And this is even more frustrating because Amy is extremely popular among young people, and it has been for a long time who are trying to sound cool but who sometimes just want to. R0, the features of the variety without understanding the real challenges and the real discrimination that people who speak it all the time face on a daily basis.
S2: Yeah. So if we look at these various, you know, folk ideologies and ideas about the origins of both the Who Day and who dat chant, I think that provides a good example of the ways in which black speakers have contributed to the diverse varieties of English spoken in the U.S., and we’ll be talking more about increasing linguistic and social diversity in the world of puzzles after the break with our interview with Everdeen Mason.
S1: Welcome back to spectacular vernacular. Our guest today is Everdeen Mason. In January 2021, Everdeen joined the New York Times as their first ever editorial director of games overseeing the staff that produces the Times crossword, as well as digital offerings like The Spelling Bee, The Mini and Letterboxd. She came to the Times from The Washington Post, where she served as a senior audience editor. As at times, insider profile last year explained she’s working to maintain the team’s editorial standards, find new ways to engage with and broaden the puzzle audience, and ensure that every part of the game’s editing process from the constructors, that’s the people who make the puzzles to the clues provided, reflects and cultivates diverse voices. Welcome to the show, Everdeen.
S4: Hi, thanks for having me.
S2: We’re so glad to have you on. This is a real treat, and I just love your job description. It sounds like the coolest job to have. Let’s just step back a year or so ago when you took on this newly created position at the times. What attracted you about the job? But were there certain challenges that appealed to you?
S4: So I’m kind of a crazy person. I like to do a lot of different things. And so this job, I felt like I got to do everything that I like and have the opportunity to learn more things. So, you know, I’ve been in journalism. I picked newspapers for like 10 years and I’ve done everything from reporting, editing, doing SEO, doing audience development work, doing different kinds of experimentation. And this job allows me to do all of that. And then also, it’s in a new product, which is games. So I’ve never worked in games before. I do like games, obviously, but I never worked in games before. And this was an opportunity to kind of learn not just about the gaming industry, but also just about how to build products and uses a really particular kind of engine. And so working on the newsroom. You know, I was always really focused on the content itself, but in this job, I get to think about things a lot more holistically and kind of exercise all parts of my brand. So that’s really what attracted me to it. I thought to be challenging and interesting, and frankly, I needed a change. I’ve been working on news for a really long time, and I kind of wanted to do something different. So here I am, kind of doing the best of all things.
S1: Can you tell us a bit about what it’s like day to day being the editorial director? What’s it like working with, you know, the crazy Crossword people? And what’s your role in shaping the puzzle making process?
S4: So I think a lot of people don’t realize how broad my job is. So I technically run two teams. So I have the puzzle editors and I also have writers and editors who work on wordplay, which is a like our vertical. And we have the daily Crossword column, the Spelling Bee Forum, which took off last year and I hired a staff writer who’s writing more story she just started publishing this year. And so on a day to day basis, I kind of do a lot of context switching so I may go from editing a story to like reviewing clues or getting pings from the editors being like, What do you think about this puzzle? What do you think about this clue? I also do a lot of high level like operations stuff, so a lot of the work that I’ve been doing has just been helping streamline the process like it’s a pretty old school operation. So just making sure that we have all of the tools that the editors can do their best work, like they were doing a lot of manual labor literally until right before I started. They were still accepting mail submissions and I
S1: was like, Well, what’s male?
S4: I was like, Excuse me, we are digital now. So dealing with that kind of stuff, I also do work with social an audience a lot. So really trying to develop that part of it. We’re only on Twitter right now, but hopefully we’ll be changing that. So yeah, I hop around doing a lot of stuff and then a lot of like high level strategy about like what kinds of games should we be developing, what kind of stories should we be telling and kind of the product roadmap. So helping kind of prioritize what we need to focus on? We have a lot of tech debt to try to like bring our product up to speed as far as the puzzle making process. I am pretty hands on with the Crossword now, so I test puzzles. I review them. We have a lot of we call them maybes reviews where we go through every puzzle that are just pending. So we get a ton of submissions. The team goes through them and they kind of separate out the ones that they want to review specifically with. Well, and the whole team.
S2: So when you say, well, of course, you mean Will Shortz?
S4: I do. I mean, Will Shortz,
S1: puzzle guru Will Shortz’s
S4: puzzlemaster Will Shortz. Because I mean, we’re getting like one seventy five and up puzzles per week submitted. So we go through them, a bunch of them, we kind of already know, OK, this isn’t right, and then there’s a batch of them. And so we meet twice a week for like an hour to two hours and we go through the puzzles. And so I’m in that meeting as well and my role on the team because of course, they’re the best of what. They do like Joel, Sam went to Tracey. Well, they’re incredible. So they don’t really like need me for my Crossword expertise. I’m still new at this, but where I think I’m most helpful is helping facilitate conversation. You know, Will will go. He’ll read out the fill, people will talk about what they like and don’t like. I make sure to try to elevate concerns from the other people on the team. And then I also try to push them like I kind of try to push it out of their comfort zone. So I’ll challenge on like, what is this word and why do we need to use it? Or are we sure we know what that means? Or if we’re like, if they’re like, Oh, we’re not sure about this word, is this going to be like good for a general audience? I’ll challenge them to be like, No, we should use it like or no, we shouldn’t. So that’s kind of my role and there and also explaining pop culture things that they may very online and obviously have a very different background than the rest of them. I’m probably a little bit more pop culture. So I will exploit happen and explain celebrity gossip or drama or internet.
S1: You’re the voice of the people in the room.
S2: Yes. So Everdeen, we need to talk about the wordplay elephant in the room. A couple of weeks ago, it was announced that the New York Times was acquiring the hit word game Wordle. We previously spoke to Josh Wordle, the creator of Wordle. And he told us about how he was inspired by the New York Times, Crossword and New York Times Spelling Bee when he was designing the game. So how do you see Wordle fitting into the whole New York Times games ecosystem?
S4: I mean, I think it’s a perfect fit. I mean, frankly, even before we acquired it, my editors were obsessed with it, and they were having so much fun in the Slack channel talking about it, like before meetings being like, Did everyone play today? So there’s no spoiler. So we were big fans of it for the acquisition. I think it fits really nicely. I think what I like best about Wordle is that it’s just so accessible to everyone. It’s not trivia, it’s just a little bit of strategy to kind of like warm up your brain. So I like to think that you could kind of start with Wordle and then you can move on to the spelling bee, which you can kind of play over the course of the day. And then, of course, hopefully people play our Crossword every day as well.
S2: Let’s talk about one of your most recent initiatives. In January, you announced the first ever New York Times Diverse Crossword Constructor Fellowship Program, which is designed to provide mentorship and support for constructors from underrepresented groups including women, people of color and the LGBTQ community. So you are currently accepting applications for this fellowship and will drop a link with information on that in the show notes. So how did this idea for the mentoring program come about?
S4: It’s something that I just always wanted to do. It just took me a really long time to get it going. So when I was brought in, you know, they brought me in as an editorial director, obviously, because clearly we needed somebody to kind of helm and make sure we have a set of standards, voice and tone for all of our content, which we have a lot of. But on the other hand, the team was really affected by a lot of the feedback and criticism that they had been receiving for content, particularly in the Crossword. There was an open letter that was written by Constructor some people in the Crossword community, and that was really important to them to try to address some of those issues. But you know, it’s one of those things that like when you’re in it, it’s hard to kind of step out of it. And so a lot of what my role is is to kind of be that sort of like macro level outside voice and point out the things that they can’t see. And also, I’m not as emotionally attached. Like, I don’t feel bad if somebody calls us out, right? Because I’m like, OK, let’s fix it. As I was learning, I was always thinking it out, OK, how can we improve this? This is a pretty white community. It’s a pretty white space, at least at the times. How can we fix this? So there’s obviously the content of the puzzles itself, but people are submitting these puzzles to us, even open submissions platform, and we don’t really collect demographic data. But it’s pretty clear we’re not getting a lot of people of color or people from any diverse backgrounds. So in trying to solve that problem, I was just kind of it’s like the problem that all corporations have. It’s like, how do you get people in the door? But then how do you build a structure for them to actually be able to succeed? Right. So like a lot of things, people from diverse backgrounds got the opportunity to do these things later than white people. So if the standard is here, but we want these new people to come in and learn it, then we have to like, provide the training for them to do it. So when I started working backwards that way, I was like, OK, so let’s say I open the floodgates and we get all these submissions, but they can’t even get published. They don’t get through the submissions process. Then, like, there’s a point. So that’s kind of what I started talking about the logistics of like, OK, so can we train people up? Can we start working one on one with constructors? And so that’s kind of how that ball started rolling. And then they had thought of doing a mentorship program before, but it’s just, you know, they’re Crossword editors. They edit, they have a full time job. So having to go through the larger New York Times, like go through legal figure, all that stuff out. That wasn’t something. We’re going to be able to do so, I did, and then as we were talking about, I also realize, you know, by having more diverse constructors, we would also have the opportunity that literally just have like different kinds of puzzles with different cultural reference points that we would be able to get. Because to be frank, like and we did a bunch of Constructor research. Sometimes I get the sense that people are submitting puzzles that they think we will publish based on what we’ve published before. Not necessarily the puzzles that maybe are most reflective of their own voice, or maybe not even the puzzles that they’re most excited about. So I thought that this was an opportunity not only to get these people in the door, but for the editors to actually work one on one with people and like produce puzzles with different cultural viewpoints and different kinds of fill. And then by publishing them than we model the kind of work we want to see. So I’m kind of trying to get two birds with one stone here. And then lastly, all of the puzzle editors are constructors in their own right. They love mentoring. They love working on puzzles. But because we get so many puzzles, you know, I don’t want them to feel like they’re on a factory line. You know, and I thought this would just be a way to make them happy to write. They’re going to get this one on one time with people. They’re going to get to do like deep mentorship and like really flex their creative chops in that way beyond just editing. And I think that’s going to be really good for them.
S1: In recent years, there’s been some controversies over the inclusion of certain clues, certain answers that may be offensive or objectionable to different solvers. And this is the times Crossword, but also others. And it’s kind of part of a larger reckoning about word games and puzzles earlier. Well, last year, I guess Ben and I were both quoted in a Washington Post article about this reckoning, and that article mentioned that the New York Times had begun running puzzle clues and answers past diversity panel. Could you tell us a little more about that process?
S4: Yeah, I wouldn’t say they’re a diversity panel, although they are diverse. But basically we started doing that maybe may of last year, and I just thought we needed more eyes because I also think like when you see so much copy, things will slip through the cracks. And we also want to make sure that we had puzzle solvers of different skill levels as well and different age ranges, gender, sexuality, all of that. And the reason for that is because, you know, quite frankly, these folks have been doing puzzles forever, and there are things that they know because they’re Crossword things and it doesn’t always trigger that. Like, what is this in the same way that it would for a person who is not like eating, sleeping, breathing puzzles, you know? And so it’s actually been really, really helpful to have that panel, and it’s kicked off a lot of conversation. So basically what happens is we give them a week worth of puzzles, we give them the survey. They have about a week to do it. So we give them puzzles like Tuesday night, the following Monday morning at 10 a.m. They have filled out the survey and then I go through all their feedback and I basically write an email where I pull it out, like, here are the highlights of things that I want to discuss here, the things that I think we should change based on this feedback. And here are the things that we don’t need to change, but we need to keep in mind for the future. So like an example that I’m going to give because it’s coming up and I’m already dreading it is the word drag in the dictionary is filled with it. Oh. But as the New York Times Games team resident do rag owner, I know it’s part of the you, but it’s one of those like production things because like changing the use of the O, then you got to redo the whole grid and it is technically correct. But I was able to, you know, a tester was like, Come on and I was like, Oh man. And so I was like, We’re not doing this anymore going forward. Like, We’re not getting this far with direct side with it now. So that’s a milder example of like tester feedback. So it’s like it’s not even a debate to me I can start with at you, you know, so it’s things like that. That’s kind of it. I mean, it’s it’s not that exciting, but yeah. So then I send it along to Will and the whole team. And then we discuss it, and then we also have these editorial standards workshops that I started. And so if there’s anything on there that people want to discuss, like at length with the whole team in a room, then that goes on the agenda and we’ll discuss it further and be like, Hey, do we want to talk about this more? What are our feelings about it? And there’s and then we can have sort of like an open debate, not really a debate, but just the discussion of like, how do we want to do this going forward? What are the instances where we might allow it, if any, and so on and so forth?
S2: Well, it’s interesting to hear, and it seems like that whole oversight process, a lot of it involves kind of weeding out things that maybe shouldn’t belong in the puzzles. But on a more positive note, what would you love to see going forward as things that come into the Crossword and other puzzles more often?
S4: I would love to see more like modern cultural reference points. I had a joke for a while that like I would follow anybody who got Doja Cat and a puzzle, so I would love to see that. I would love to see cooler words and not necessarily like slang, right? Because they’re words that kind of like our flashes in the pan. You know, so like, I don’t need to see like Chucky and a Crossword, but you. Like more exciting words. I like learning new words, and I don’t mean like like more vocab words that aren’t like birds like or like random rivers in Europe. So, yeah, so more modern language in general. And I’m actually also really focused on the clues. I like fun clues and people really focus on the show because that’s kind of the hardest part. I would love to see food references that aren’t just the ones we always have, like, Oh my gosh, we end up rejecting the puzzle. But somebody had my finger and their puzzle and my family’s Puerto Rican, and I was super excited about it. And I’d also like to see pop culture from other countries, I think would be really fun, just like a more global approach. Like, I would love to see artists like Rosalia in the puzzle and things like that, and just more like global fill. That’s not just like. But that doesn’t feel totally one on one on one. Like, sometimes we run these like Spanish clues and it’s just like house in Spanish. It’s just kind of boring. And I know we have to like our audience is primarily English speaking and we’re a general audience. So that’s kind of one of the things that I’ve been pushing on. So like our general audience. Well, what does that mean? Like, do you just mean white people? Because to me, the general audience is me. So, you know, that’s kind of what I’m pushing for. Give me fill that you think would make me happy. Everdeen Happy
S1: Everdeen Mason. Thank you for joining us today. Thank you. After the break, it’s time for some wordplay. Welcome back. Now it’s the time in the show where we play with language
S2: for our wordplay quiz. This week we’ve got a change of pace. We’re being joined by a listener who won a wordplay challenge from one of our previous episodes. But our randomly chosen winner just happens to be a puzzle maker himself. Peter Gordon of Great Neck New York is a familiar name to word puzzle fans. Peter is the former editorial director at Puzzle Right Press, an imprint of Sterling Publishing, where he oversaw the publication of a wide array of puzzle books. He was also Crossword editor at the New York Sun, and after the Sun stopped publishing, he started his own Crossword subscription service called Fireball Crosswords. Check it out at Fireball Crosswords Gqom. He has also published more than 120 of his Crosswords in the New York Times, including the very first crossword under the editorship of Will Shortz back in 1993. Welcome to the show, Peter. Hi, thanks for having me. Peter your Fireball Crosswords are great, I have to say for people who like solving super challenging puzzles and you’ve also started up a subscription series called Fireball News Flash Crosswords, and those are packed full of references to current events. And I solve the one for January 20th and was very happy to see at 24 across you had American Dialect Society’s 2021 Word of the year was the clue.
S5: Yeah, I try to put that in every year. As long as you make it 15 letters or less, I’ll put it in.
S2: So for 2021, it was insurrection so that fit into the grid. And then at 49 down, you had something else that we’ve talked about here. Unspectacular vernacular. It was super hot web based game that similar to Johto, and everybody knows that game, of course, Wordle. So it’s great that you’re incorporating these topics directly into your news flash.
S1: Crosswords love to see it. Yeah. When Ben and I saw that you had one hour wordplay contest, we thought it might be fun to turn the tables a little bit. Since you’re such an old hand at making puzzles, it made sense for you to be the one quizzing us rather than vice versa. And you said you were game for the role reversal, so this time I’m very scared. But Ben and I get to be the ones at the receiving end of the wordplay quiz. So Peter were in your hands, OK?
S5: Today I brought an initial puzzle. Every answer has the initials SE V, so if I said Slate podcast hosted by Nicole Holiday and Ben Zimmer, you’d say the category right now. All right. Ready. Ready. OK, your first question is the singer heard here looking.
S3: I’m as helpless as a kitten up for two
S1: Ben seems like he knows, but I don’t
S5: think he has a lifetime Grammy.
S2: Yeah, she has a very distinctive voice. You can’t really mistake that for anybody
S5: else, nicknames or sassy and the divine one.
S1: This might just be before my time, but I’m glad Ben knows
S2: well, music’s kind of my thing, but I got to say that has to be Sarah Vaughan. Correct? The great Sarah Vaughan.
S5: All right. Number two, what country has a flag that consisted of a yellow background with three red horizontal stripes through the middle?
S1: Oh, I think there can only be given the theme. There can only be one.
S5: I think yes, this was the country existed from nineteen fifty five to nineteen seventy five.
S1: Oh, it doesn’t exist now.
S5: There was a war there.
S1: Given the timeline, it’s got to be something.
S5: Soviet Soviets. No capital was Saigon.
S1: Oh, South
S5: Vietnam, South Vietnam.
S2: I was thinking like St. Vincent and the Grenadines. That doesn’t quite work. That would be S.V. and the South Vietnam makes a lot more sense.
S5: There you go. OK, and now a very short, blue shy person.
S2: I’m a shy person. Oh, I got it.
S5: I got it. The second word both the color and a flower.
S1: Oh, a shrinking violet.
S2: Shrinking violet. There you go.
S5: Okay, now another audio clue, the actress heard, speaking Here it
S6: is so wonderful to be here tonight hosting Lanarkshire, the surviving movie. I have to thank all of you because this is such a huge moment for me in my life.
S1: I know that I love her, although I haven’t actually watched that much Modern Family, but that has to be Sofia Vergara, correct?
S5: All right. The region in Northern California?
S2: Oh, I think I know this one. It’s an informal name for a region, if I’m not mistaken.
S5: Yes. Stanford University is there
S2: also the name of a of an HBO comedy about the
S1: Oh, that’s where we keep the tech bros. Is it Silicon Valley? It is.
S2: Thanks so much, Peter, and I understand you also have a challenge for our listeners. Is that right?
S5: That’s right. This also is an SB answer, and you have to come up with the name of a person who was born a long, long time ago, whose death was celebrated this month.
S2: OK, that’s a good, challenging clue for you all. If you think you know the answer. Send it to us. It’s spectacular at Slate.com with Quiz in the subject line of your email and from the correct entries, we’ll randomly select a winner who will receive a Slate Plus membership for one year. Or if you’re already Slate Plus member, you’ll get a one year extension on your subscription once again, that spectacular at Slate.com with quizzes in the subject line, and please respond by Midnight Eastern Time on February 23rd, and we’re very pleased to announce the winner of the Bat Analogies Challenge from our February 1st episode. Mischa Dougherty of Belfast Northern Ireland figured out the analogy, which was this fast is to best, as Fanny Hill is to Benny Hill. Congratulations, Misha.
S1: Thanks so much for joining us, Peter.
S5: Thanks for having
S1: me. That’s it for this week. We hope you’ve enjoyed the show if you have. Remember to subscribe wherever you get your podcasts. If you’re subscribing on Apple Podcasts, please rate and reviews while you’re there, it helps other listeners find the show. And please consider subscribing to Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like full access to all the articles on Slate.com. Zero ads on any Slate podcast and bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and One Year. It’s only $1 for the first month. To learn more, go to Slate.com. Slash spectacular plus
S2: thanks again to Everdeen Mason for being our guest this week. Spectacular Vernacular is produced by Jasmine Ellis Asha Saluja is managing producer for Slate Podcast.
S1: We’ll be back in two weeks with more spectacular vernacular. Thanks for listening!