Author Archives: debooker

About debooker

A brief (and somewhat ambiguous) biography. One hundred words, more or less, about David Booker might include the following: though lost in the cosmos without a compass, he has nonetheless managed to find his way into middle age. As to what he will do now that he is there is still a matter of speculation. He often seeks guidance from his youthful daughter as he alternately approaches and retreats from the slow expansion of his waistline and the slow collapse of Western Civilization as he knows it. He hopes the two will reach a libration (or libation) point and he will creep into old age with some dignity and clothes intact.

Photo finish Friday: “She came from…”

She came from beyond the light, from a place before light, before shadows, before there was a beginning and an end.

She came from beyond the light, from a place before light, before shadows, before there was a beginning and an end.

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Filed under 2016, Photo by Lauren Booker, Photo Finish Friday

Haiku to you Thursday: “Endless”

The rooms are endless, /

Like stars in the universe /

In my summer’s dream.

[Editor’s note: This takes the same idea as last week’s haiku and takes it in a slightly different way.]

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Filed under 2016, Haiku to You Thursday, poetry by author

Writing tip Wednesday: “Dark and stormy contest”


Details at:

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Filed under 2016, writing tip, Writing Tip Wednesday


They intended to travel back in time and eliminate the period.

They intended to travel back in time and eliminate the period.

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Filed under 2016, cartoon by author, CarToonsday

Monday morning writing joke: “Checked out”

A newspaper columnist scurries into a library. She needs every book they have on Harry Houdini. She asks the librarian for help. “It’s for an article I have to turn in today.”

The librarian finds where the books are located and he leads the woman to the shelves to check out what they have.

They find the spot. They both stare at the shelves for a moment, then he turns to the columnist and says, “Looks like they have all disappeared.”

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Filed under 2016, Monday morning writing joke

Hey, brother, can you spare a slang word?

Endangered American Slang Needs Your Help

Won’t you consider adopting a word or two?

by Dani Spencer

If you’re from Delaware, Maryland, or Virginia and think having shat fall from your pinetrees is abnormal, then we have news for you: you are among the many Americans losing touch with your historical regional dialect. And let’s be frank: can our language, our literature really afford to lose fleech, fogo or goose drownder?

Okay, poop jokes aside, the Dictionary of American Regional English views the potential extinction of 50 American words and phrases as no laughing matter. DARE and the global podcasting platform Acast have joined forces and are starting a campaign to bring these colloquialisms back to “their former glory.” The game plan is for hosts of various programs on Acast’s network to start using these at risk words, in hopes that their millions of listeners will adopt them into their vocabulary.

dialect-mapThis is not a bad strategy considering the growing popularity of podcasts in the U.S. The president of Acast, Karl Rosander, believes “learning through audio is a hugely effective educational method,” and “vummed” that there will be a vernacular revival.

And what about the written word? Well, readers, study up, make a point of using a few of these expressions in your own writing. Let’s all of us do Faulkner proud.

Here’s the full DARE list of endangered words and phrases:
Barn burner: a wooden match that can be struck on any surface. Chiefly Pennsylvania, southern New Jersey and Maryland.
Bat hide: a dollar bill. Chiefly south-west.
Be on one’s beanwater: to be in high spirits, feel frisky. Chiefly New England.
Bonnyclabber: thick, sour milk. Chiefly north Atlantic.
Counterpin: a bedspread. Chiefly south and south midland.
Croker sack: a burlap bag. Chiefly Gulf states, south Atlantic.
Cuddy: a small room, closet, or cupboard.
Cup towel: a dish towel. Chiefly Texas, inland south region.
Daddock: rotten wood, a rotten log. Chiefly New England.
Dish wiper: a dish towel. Chiefly New England.
Dozy: of wood, decaying. Chiefly north-east, especially Maine.
Dropped egg: a poached egg. Chiefly New England.
Ear screw: an earring. Chiefly Gulf States, lower Mississippi Valley.
Emptins: homemade yeast used as starter in bread. Chiefly New England, upstate New York.
Farmer match: a wooden match than can be struck on any surface. Chiefly upper midwest, Great Lakes region, New York, West Virginia.
Fleech: to coax, wheedle, flatter. South Atlantic.
Fogo: An offensive smell. Chiefly New England.
Frog strangler: a heavy rain. Chiefly south, south midland.
Goose drownder: a heavy rain. Chiefly midland.
I vum: I swear, I declare. Chiefly New England.
Larbo: a type of candy made of maple syrup on snow. New Hampshire.
Last button on Gabe’s coat: the last bit of food. Chiefly south, south midland.
Leader: a downspout or roof gutter. Chiefly New York, New Jersey.
Nasty-neat: overly tidy. Scattered usage, but especially north-east.
Parrot-toed: pigeon-toed. Chiefly mid-Atlantic, south Atlantic.
Pin-toed: pigeon-toed. Especially Delaware, Maryland, Virginia.
Popskull: cheap or illegal whiskey. Chiefly southern Appalachians.
Pot cheese: cottage cheese. Chiefly New York, New Jersey, northern Pennsylvania, Connecticut.
Racket store: a variety store. Particularly Texas.
Sewing needle: a dragonfly. Especially Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Massachusetts.
Shat: a pine needle. Chiefly Delaware, Maryland, Virginia.
Shivering owl: a screech owl. Chiefly south Atlantic, Gulf states.
Skillpot: a turtle. Chiefly District of Columbia, Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia.
Sonsy: cute, charming, lively. Scattered.
Spill: a pine needle. Chiefly Maine.
Spin street yarn: to gossip. Especially New England.
Spouty: of ground: soggy, spongy. Scattered.
Suppawn: corn meal mush. Chiefly New York.
Supple-sawney: a homemade jointed doll that can be made to “dance”. Scattered.
Tacker: a child, especially a little boy. Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, eastern Pennsylvania.
Tag: a pine needle. Chiefly Virginia.
To bag school: to play hooky. Chiefly Pennsylvania, New Jersey.
Tow sack: a burlap bag. Chiefly south, south midland, Texas, Oklahoma.
Trash mover: a heavy rain. Chiefly mid-Atlantic, south Atlantic, lower Mississippi Valley.
Tumbleset: a somersault. Chiefly south-east, Gulf states; also north-east.
Wamus: a men’s work jacket. Chiefly north-central, Pennsylvania.
Whistle pig: a groundhog, also known as woodchuck. Chiefly Appalachians.
Winkle-hawk: a three-cornered tear in cloth. Chiefly Hudson Valley, New York.
Work brittle: eager to work. Chiefly midland, especially Indiana.
Zephyr: a light scarf. Scattered.

[Editor’s note: Similar article at: ]

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Filed under 2016, Writing Week in Review

Photo finish Friday: “Reward”

Each flower is its own reward, especially to the inchworm making its way to the petals.

Each flower is its own reward, especially to the inchworm making its way to the petals.

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Filed under 2016, photo by David E. Booker, Photo Finish Friday