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October 28, 2008



Memories they can't be boughten
They can't be won at carnivals for free
Well it took me years
To get those souvenirs
And I don't know how they slipped away from me


Ha. I haven't heard that in years. We used to say that where I grew up, but that was in Eastern Washington, not Iowa. (Although half my family is originally from Iowa.) I didn't realize it was dialect, in fact, once I really thought about the word, I totally axed it out of my vocab. I wish I could've remained a little truer to my roots.


You need never apologize for serving Walker shortbreads, or even Chessmen—or for saying "boughten."


My wife and I had this same discussion. I said "BOUGHTON" about something and she said "THAT'S NOT A WORD"...So I looked it up in the dictionary, found it, showed her and the case was closed! I'm from IOWA and, believe it or is my wife.

Listener Demetrios

We avoid such unpleasantries by serving
this stuff ====>
at our memorial services.

When it is good, it is very, very good.


I heard that before. Every part of the country is different. I used to think I was weird because I pronounced root like "boot". Whatever, as long as we understand each other. You know that song "you say tomato, I say toe-mah-toe"? Who the hell says toe-mah-toe? I guess someone out there does...and I would know what they mean, so it's no big deal...It's like people getting bent out of shape because you would rather use a PC than a Mac...who cares? I've known people who pronounce the word "striped" as though it it has two syllabels, like "imbed" or "misled"...I've pointed it out and asked why they do that and they're like "do what? what do you mean?" Come on! I'm not passing judgement, I'm just wondering, that's all...


Wow, attractive!


Some take an ax to their vocab. Others just ax questions.

Krys O.

I grew up hearing my Polish peasant parents speaking broken English. Still love hearing my 86 year old dad create new hybrid words. Language is malleable and alive. Fuck a bunch o' rigid ninnies who can't handle creativity.

Dale Hazelton

My dad used to call the things that held your teeth gumes. The thing that let the smoke out of the house was the chim-bley. And the past tense of climb was clim (as in 'he clim up the ladder"). We knew what he meant and we didn't dare correct him. As an aside, a wake isn't a wake without a variety of jello dishes such as ambrosia.


I grew up in Eastern Nebraska, son of Northern Minnesotan parents. Twice a year we would drive 550 miles to see my grandparents "up nort." We always stopped to eat at any one of a handful of cafes along the route somewhere in the Dakotas. My mother's litmus test of each cafe was whether the pies were "homemade" or "boughten frozen." Three stars for the cafe with homemade pie--five stars if the meringue was three (or more) inches tall. Woe to the cafe with "boughten frozen," as it would be summarily derided and skipped over on future trips. "Not there, she would grimace, "Their pies are boughten frozen." Of course, over time "boughten frozen" would become the food service norm--as would the franchised restaurants that have all but replaced those little Mom & Pop cafes. Thanks Iowa Firecracker for the trip down Midwestern Memory Lane!


I'm from St. Louis, where the south side is permeated with "Scrubby Dutch" pronunciation (e.g., "warsh", "tarlet", "harses", etc.). I was quite astonished when I discovered that "drinken" (past tense of "drink", naturally) wasn't recognized as a real word. Nuts to them. I still use it.

Firecracker go POP!

Janey Yonkers

"The king is dead
but not forgotten
Don't eat the cranberries
If they are boughten.


What a bizatch.

And I am not making fun of bizatch. I'd say that.


i say "roof" that way too! i thought it was just a michigan thing.

Will S.

My grandma says "boughten", and she's from southwestern Ontario, Canada. Seems to be a widespread (across North America) rural phenomenon.


I'm a fan of the word boughten. And a word I may like even better is "tump", as in: The boat tumped over and we all fell in the water. My husband never fails to point out that it's not a real word, but I don't really care.

I was just with my mom (who lives in TX, where I grew up [hence my use of the word "tump"]) while she recovered from surgery. Her friends brought food each day after she come home from the hospital, but much of it was boughten; things like a plate of food from Boston Market. I was surprised ... and not disappointed that they sometimes didn't bring food for me as well.


I enjoyed this story almost as much as this slice of pecan (pee can) pie I'm washing down with the best cup of coffee that's ever been saucered and blowed.

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