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 on Chris Van Allsburg's website:

"In The Mysteries of Harris Burdick, there is a picture with the title,
"Just Desert." Why is this misspelled? 

I, too, was puzzled by this title Burdick had written in the corner of
the picture. When I persuaded the Houghton Mifflin Company to reproduce
Burdick's drawings in 1984, I suggested the spelling be corrected.
However, a copy editor at the company informed me that the correct
spelling for "Just Desert" is with one "s." It is a figure of speech
meaning, "that which one deserves, appropriate award or punishment") and
was just as Burdick had written it. 

Burdick evidently intended the play on words, and the title reinforces
the idea that the woman in the picture is preparing something more then
just an ordinary pumpkin pie. Possibly she has someone in mind to whom
she would like to serve it."

Melissa Ward
Library Media Specialist
Westwind Intermediate
9040 W. Campbell
Phoenix, AZ 85037

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