Mystery Drawer (Rebroadcast) - 15 November 2021
Amid court-ordered busing in the 1970s, a middle-school teacher tried to distract her nervous students on the first day of class with this strange assignment: find a monarch caterpillar. The result? A memorable lesson in the miracle of metamorphosis. Plus, the story behind the slang interjection word!, meaning “believe me!” The original version involved the idea that a person’s word was their bond. And the expression empty wagons make the most noise suggests that the person who boasts the loudest may actually be the least knowledgeable. It’s a phrase that’s had many versions over the centuries — including one that goes all the way back to ancient Rome! All that, and nebby, beat-feeting, red-headed stepchild, corotole, undermine, fankle, a wacky puzzle about Greek names, and more.
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