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What Is A Sandwich? (Or, John Hodgman Calls In To Leonard Lopate To Argue With Me)

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Jul 24, 2014

UPDATED

Today I went on The Leonard Lopate Show on WNYC to discuss whether hot dogs are sandwiches. It's an issue I've long pondered, but one that gained a special urgency when John Hodgman claimed recently that they are not sandwiches. In the midst of the radio segment, Leonard and I got a call from Hodgman himself, who took issue with my hot-dogs-are-sandwiches position. Listen:

Let's rewind a bit. In a recent episode of The Sporkful I argued that hot dogs are in fact sandwiches. Listen to that clip here:

Hodgman responded to that rant on his blog.

Of course, I was not the first or last person to raise this question, but it does seem that since that episode launched, the question of the correct definition of a sandwich has been an especially hot one. Jeb Lund, long a leading thinker on the topic, wrote this piece for The Guardian. Then Planet Money did a story about how New York State tax law deems a burrito a sandwich. Insanity!

After the segment with Lopate I led a Twitter chat at #NotASandwich with Jeb Lund, Robert Smith of Planet Money, Mignon Fogarty (a.k.a. "Grammar Girl"), and Food52. Here are some of the highlights:

Photo: Flickr CC / SweetOnVeg

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