Scandal has rocked the magical world of Weingartenstan. WaPo’s big-brained humorist and winner of multiple Pulitzer Prizes, Gene Weingarten, was out last week. We were served a warmed-over column about Gene visiting a book club. According to him, that was NOT the piece that we were intended to see. Weingarten explains in his latest piece that there was a disagreement with the syndicators of his column and WaPo. He writes, “The Washington Post Writers Group, which syndicates the column, liked it a lot. The Washington Post, which originates the column, didn’t like it at all. Post editors declined to run it on the grounds that it did not meet Post standards of propriety OR humor.”
A Weingarten piece that was so dangerous that his hometown paper BANNED it? It must be something really edgy. SPOILER ALERT – It isn’t. The syndicated column was THIS piece, about aptonyms. What the hell is an aptonym? Gene says, “An aptonym is a name that coincidentally is descriptive of its owners occupation, or some other aspect of the persons life.” In other words, it’s a column that exists solely to let Gene make dick jokes. Here’s an example:
Me: Yes, thank you. Now, the reason I am calling you today is that a very alert reader in the medical field noticed you have a new urologist on your team.
Dick: You probably mean Dr. Wang.
Me: Â Rhymes with “bang,” not “song”?
Dick: Yes, Dr. Wang. Doctor Lester Wang.
Me: OK, my heart is a trip-hammer here. I have an important question to ask. Is Dr. Les Wang trained in performing circumcisions?
Dick: Yes, he is.
It’s not clever or funny or informative. I bet it was fun to write, but Weingarten is really, at this point, just churning out journalistic masturbation.