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Family Words: A Dictionary of the Secret Language of Families (How America Speaks series) [Hardcover]

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Item description for Family Words: A Dictionary of the Secret Language of Families (How America Speaks series) by Paul Dickson...

Providing a vast collection of words developed in households across the country and through the decades, thiscreative referencebook defines crafty words createdwithin specific families. These wordscarry significantmeaningwithinthe originatingfamily unitbut aremeaningless to those outside.For example,a "gluebottom" isthe name for theguest who would not leaveand "ootocks" became the expression for shoes and socks when a child was unable to pronounce the words individually. Thisdictionaryincludes thestories andinterpretationnecessaryfor all readers to appreciatethese amusing and useful words and phrases.

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Item Specifications...

Pages   224
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 7.1" Width: 5.1" Height: 0.8"
Weight:   0.5 lbs.
Binding  Hardcover
Release Date   May 28, 2007
Publisher   Marion Street Press, Inc.
ISBN  1933338172  
ISBN13  9781933338170  

Availability  0 units.

More About Paul Dickson

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Paul Dickson has written a dozen word books and dictionaries, including "Words from the White House," "The Dickson Baseball Dictionary," " "and "Slang." An occasional contributor to the late William Safire's On Language column in the "New York Times," Dickson has coined several words of his own, including demonym (term that describes a person geographically, as in a New Yorker). He lives in Garrett Park, Maryland."

Paul Dickson currently resides in Garrett Park Washington, in the state of Maryland.

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Entertainment > Humor > General
2Books > Subjects > Entertainment > Humor > Parenting & Families
3Books > Subjects > Reference > Dictionaries & Thesauruses > English (British)
4Books > Subjects > Reference > Dictionaries & Thesauruses > General
5Books > Subjects > Reference > Words & Language > General

Reviews - What do customers think about Family Words: A Dictionary of the Secret Language of Families (How America Speaks series)?

A fabulous, funny word book!  Oct 30, 2007
Would you like a book that will inspire witty discussions around the dinner table? Some great conversations around the water cooler? Even a fun topic for a party! Family Words book brings back warm memories as I recall words that only OUR family would ever know what they could possibly mean. I think the highest form of praise for an author to give is this: I wish I had written this book!

I'm still laughing over "Burtie" (page 29) and doesn't everyone have a version of Clu Clu? (an imaginary scapegoat who gets blamed for not-so-commendable activities)
I can't imagine a better gift for yourself or for a friend or family member.
Elizabeth Koehler-Pentacoff
Highly Entertaining...A Great Stocking Stuffer, too!  Oct 29, 2007
Everyone has at least a few little "family-isms" unique to their brood. Now readers can get an A to Z peek into the entertaining world of "family speak" thanks to Paul Dixon's Family Words: A Dictionary of the Secret Language of Families. From "Applaudience" (an audience that comes to applaud; specifically those composed of parents and grandparents at children's recitals) to "Zib" (the sound of an acetate tab being pulled from the tape on a disposable diaper), you'll discover funny, touching, useful words you might even start using in your family dialogue.

A GREAT, inexpensive gift for the upcoming holiday season!
TERRIFIC  Sep 25, 2007
Although I've suspected that I might be wrong, I've always thought that my family was the only household that had its own lexicon of words and phrases to describe and refer to things both ordinary and unusual. Fearing that others might think that my folks and I were even more odd than we outwardly appeared to be, I kept it all to myself for a long time. But then along came "Family Words" by Paul Dickson.

Now I realize that there is a fascinating and funny world of "inside jargon" common to many people, and Mr. Dickson has tapped into it with his usual wit and intelligence.

Whether you come from a family like mine - where "family words" were almost a second language - or if you grew up sticking strictly to the "King's English" (or something at least reasonably close to it), this is a book that you can't help but enjoy, and I recommend it to anyone who is the least bit curious about this "secret garden" of language, or anyone with a sense of humor.
An Enjoyable Read for Family Members of All Ages  Sep 22, 2007
"Family Words: The Dictionary of the Secret Language of Families" is a delightful book that will amuse family members of all ages. Many of the entries will inspire readers to say, "But in our family, we called them ..." Some of the words are appropriate only within an individual family context, such as the Minnesota family members who referred to their grandmother as "99," because 99 percent of the time when the phone rang, it was her. But others could be useful to anyone, such as the family who uses the term "yesternight" for the evening portion of yesterday. One can tell from the tone and style of the book that the author truly loves language, which is one of the reasons this book is such an enjoyable read.
Like a window into family life  Sep 12, 2007
These words are fascinating! Reading the book is like being a fly on the wall in the kitchen of a fun, creative family. I already use a couple of them -- mudwaffles, which are the little chunks of mud that fall off kids' boots, and ootocks, a quicker way to say "shoes and socks." The stories behind many of the words are funny, too.

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