Wednesday, July 5, 2023

Wednesday's Random Slang-o-rama: Squirrel can, wreck pan, and biscuit-shooter

Shortly after referring to the Dictionary of the American West  last week, I was shocked and saddened to read that the dictionary's author, Win Blevins, had passed. An award-winning writer known for his "mastery of western lore," Win will be missed. May his memory and his works live on. 

Once the Fourth of July feasting is done, it's time for the merrymakers to pick up their plates and stagger from the table to the squirrel can and from thence to the wreck pan.

Squirrel can and wreck pan are two cowboy slang terms that might come in handy for those in charge of the modern-day kitchen.

According to Win Blevins' Dictionary of the American West, a squirrel can is "a big can used by the camp cook for scraps." The same dictionary defines the wreck pan as "the tub for dirty dishes at the chuck wagon. Also called the wreck tub."

So, give your resident biscuit-shooter (aka "cook") a break, and do your bit to clean up after chowing down.

Please clean up after yourselves when you're done eating, boys.
Cowboys eating out on the range, chuck wagon in background 
Date 1880 (Library of Congress)

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