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small white square Somebody got in trouble <1> with the other N-word, about which my MS-Office Bookshelf says "Middle English nigard, perhaps from nig, stingy person, of Scandinavian origin." Ya gotta wonder about anyone using the word in public. I wrote a whole bunch about this yesterday and tossed it; today's "Slate" sums things up so much better:

The spins: 1) This is political correctness run amok. 2) It's about sensitivity, not intent. 3) It's about black paranoia. (A leading black lawyer asked, "Do we really know where the Norwegians got the word?") 4) It's political correctness gridlock, because Howard is gay, and gay activists are now pressuring [D.C. Mayor Anthony] Williams to rehire him. 5) Williams shamefully caved. 6) Williams had to cave because he lacks credibility with blacks, because he's "not black enough."
That's from Slate's "The Week / The Spin" section... this story's David Howard reminds me Ruth Sherman of the Nappy Hair incident last year.

small gray square Sudden memory this morning of my very early shame at the amusement park - my mother took my older brother H and I onto the Tilt-a-Whirl and I found the it so terrifying that I screamed to stop - and they did. I was removed (from the middle position on the seat, which I found precarious) and the ride was re-started. It was the kind of situation where you wanted to try the thing, but once the thing was in motion you didn't like it at all. I wanted to try it again, but they wouldn't let me - not until the next year. Then I would've yelled with pleasure, not fear; but as I recall it was many years before I got another chance to ride a "Tilt-A-Whirl".

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<1> According to the "Washington Post," his original "I will have to be niggardly with this fund because it's not going to be a lot of money" became the rumor that he said "I'm tired of all these N-words calling me with their problems."