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  • "The place had been a tiny chapel to the penis, phallic devices of all makes and creeds, on display like shoes in a shoe store though without the BANNICKS and special chairs needed to be properly fitted." in Lorrie Moore's A Gate at the Stairs (Knopf: New York, 2009, pg. 71. Moore plays with midwestern dialects in this novel; maybe "bannicks" are some sort of gizmo out there? Maybe she's just messing with our heads? Anybody heard of bannicks out there in the heartland? Or is this just the way a slightly illiterate undergrad narrator refers to "The Brannock DeviceĀ®," a "foot-measuring device that is a must in all retail footwear stores"? Oh, ok, sorry, I should have known. . . .

    December 27, 2009