Jejune Bug

It's been a mixed blessing of a first day for me since Wonkette's e-mail cup, filled with bile and other assorted goodies, slosheth at only half full. (I'm told this never happens.) And the subject that's been most bandied about at this neverending banquet of ass-fuckery? Linguistics, or more specifically The Note's unexplained yanking of "jejune" -- followed by the covert and highly weird replacement of it with "peppery" -- from a post about Bush's "cowboy swagger and yuppie self-consciousness."

Now, I'd be a lousy Christopher Hitchens acolyte if I failed to take this opportunity to point out that Kingsley Amis and one of his modestly successful offspring used to bond, game-of-catch-like, over the maiming of the English language. "Jejune" was one of their favorite solecisms because "lacking in nutritive value" is really the primary definition; frequent misuse altered the word to make it mean something like "callow," which it in fact does mean to deadline-harried writers not afraid to fall down and go boom.

Woody Allen rang what should have been the final knell, so to speak, on the pretentiousness of "jejune" in Love and Death: "You have the temerity to accuse me of jejunosity? I'm one of the most june people I know."

And so that's that. Thanks to the blogosphere for stitching up and then unraveling again this minor CBS memo of the OED.


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