Steve and Kory have a special treat this week: the first half of our interview with lexicographer, author, bon vivant, raconteur, and damn fine human being Jesse Sheidlower. He talks about how he was sucked into the gaping maw of lexicography by Lord Byron's "tool," inadvertently became the hero of a novel set at Random House, wrote this little book called The F Word that resulted in the accidental utterance of said f-word on NPR and the constant-forever debunking of "Fornication Under Consent of the King," and told Steve Martin that all us word nerds adored his "Disgruntled Former Lexicographer" essay in The New Yorker.
This episode features cusswords, in the event that a book called The F Word didn't give that away.
- Jesse's words to live by: "Anytime someone says to you that something's from an acronym, if you say 'No, it's not,' you'll be right 100% of the time."
- NPR voice, now with extra vocal fry!
- Why too much grad school is bad for you. (Drop out NOW.)
- Kory asks Jesse The Worst Question Ever and is appropriately called out for it.
- Mispronunciation Index: NONE, because Jesse and his gorgeous pronunciation of "roman à clef" is here to save us all.