Monday, April 14, 2008

Wow. That Was A Stupid Thing to Say

From the Politico:

U.S. Rep. Geoff Davis, a Hebron Republican, compared Obama and his message for change similar to a "snake oil salesman" [at a Northern Kentucky Lincoln Day dinner].

He said in his remarks at the GOP dinner that he also recently participated in a "highly classified, national security simulation" with Obama.

"I'm going to tell you something: That boy's finger does not need to be on the button," Davis said. "He could not make a decision in that simulation that related to a nuclear threat to this country."

An aide to Davis, Jeremy Hughes, declined to comment on the remark, and didn't dispute the accuracy of the quote.

We're not even bothering to take our Klan robes off in public anymore, are we?

At this point, I was going to find a way to use the word "irregardless" again but I think our nitpicky busybody gets the point. Don't like what I write? Too fucking bad. I will take all the criticism in the world and correct myself when I get the facts wrong, but the English language is an inexact, evolving, turgid mass of swirling contradictions, made-up words, phony-baloney etymologies abound, and then there's this guy:

It is known as one of the greatest literary achievements in the history of English letters. The creation of the Oxford English Dictionary began in 1857, took seventy years to complete, drew from tens of thousands of brilliant minds, and organized the sprawling language into 414,825 precise definitions. But hidden within the rituals of its creation is a fascinating and mysterious story--a story of two remarkable men whose strange twenty-year relationship lies at the core of this historic undertaking.

Professor James Murray, an astonishingly learned former schoolmaster and bank clerk, was the distinguished editor of the OED project. Dr. William Chester Minor, an American surgeon from New Haven, Connecticut, who had served in the Civil War, was one of thousands of contributors who submitted illustrative quotations of words to be used in the dictionary. But Minor was no ordinary contributor. He was remarkably prolific, sending thousands of neat, handwritten quotations from his home in the small village of Crowthorne, fifty miles from Oxford. On numerous occasions Murray invited Minor to visit Oxford and celebrate his work, but Murray's offer was regularly--and mysteriously--refused.

Thus the two men, for two decades, maintained a close relationship only through correspondence. Finally, in 1896, after Minor had sent nearly ten thousand definitions to the dictionary but had still never traveled from his home, a puzzled Murray set out to visit him. It was then that Murray finally learned the truth about Minor--that, in addition to being a masterful wordsmith, Minor was also a murderer, clinically insane--and locked up in Broadmoor, England's harshest asylum for criminal lunatics.

The Professor and the Madman is an extraordinary tale of madness and genius, and the incredible obsessions of two men at the heart of the Oxford English Dictionary and literary history. With riveting insight and detail, Simon Winchester crafts a fascinating glimpse into one man's tortured mind and his contribution to another man's magnificent dictionary.

So, from my deepest, most book-loving heart, kiss my ass. Irregardless of whether you can reach that high.

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