Saturday, November 8, 2008

G.E.D.L. Hughley

I’ll make this quick, because I don’t begrudge D.L. Hughley his CNN show. Really, I don’t. And I certainly don’t wanna behave like a crab in a barrel. Not after the week we just had.

But D.L., goodness gracious... read a muhfuggin’ book!

About six minutes into tonight’s program, D.L. began interviewing Dr. Drew Pinsky, the psychiatrist, about healing our nation’s partisan divide.

Pinsky was disturbed, he said, by the “cantankerous and rancorous” tone of the 2008 presidential campaign. Before Pinsky could finish his thought, D.L. interrupted thusly: “I got a G.E.D. ‘Cantankerous and rancorous’... ?”

Pinsky paused, downshifted, and rephrased it: “hostile and angry.”

Mr. Hughley nodded approvingly. “Okay, I got that,” he said.

I reached for the remote. I was through. Outta there. Because D.L. Hughley hosts a show on CNN, and he doesn’t know what the words “cantankerous” and “rancorous” mean.

You think D.L. was joking? Since he’s, like, a comedian and shit?

No. The man has a limited vocabulary. I found that out in late 2006 when I attended a panel discussion hosted by Elvis Mitchell. It included the cast of the NBC drama “Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip,” along with series creator Aaron Sorkin.

The same thing happened. Another actor said a word that D.L. didn’t know, and D.L. announced he didn’t know it. He might have even mentioned his G.E.D. again.

I wish I could remember what the word was... because, as I recall, it was not a sesquipedalian word. It was a word that everyone else on that stage (and probably everyone in the audience) comprehended.

From then on, Bradley Whitford or Steven Weber – one of those smug bastards – made a running joke out of the word. I felt bad for D.L.

Not tonight, though.

UPDATE (11/09/08): Here’s a vidclip of the Drew Pinsky segment:

60 comments:

SJ said...

Wow that's embarrassing. English isn't my first language and I am aware of those words too. Perhaps this shows that he doesn't read at all?

Kellybelle said...

I think D.L. does that because he's insecure about not graduating from high school. He does that a lot in his stand up, too. Funny, Chris Rock has a GED (good enough degree) but he seems to know that he's smart and deserving of fame.

Geneva Girl said...

It's the same attitude that I hate about Sherri Shepherd: She revels in her ignorance. Instead of trying to better herself, e.g., looking at a globe to see that the world isn't flat, she seems almost proud.

D.L. may have wrongly assumed that because he doesn't understand something his audience didn't either. I would imagine that viewers of CNN are pretty sophisticated. He needs to understand that.

Comedians shouldn't be pointing out how stupid they are, but how stupid everyone else is. You have to be pretty smart to do that.

odocoileus said...

Next up for DL?

VP nomination!

(Sure, it was the obvious joke, but then, I'm an obvious guy.)

LennieG said...

Outstanding post. I don't watch D.L. Ugly. Refuse to try to sit through it.

Yet, here is the thing about intellect. An intelligent person can "figure out" what a new word or phrase means by context. Also, a smart person would not sit on a national show and reveal that he does not know certain words. Instead, he'd play it off.

I can tell that D.L. Ugly does not read. Reading is the quickest and most effective way to increase vocabulary.

phx said...

Sesquipedalian? Help me out here. Sounds like a reptile.
I agree that someone with a limited vocabulary shouldn't have a talk show on CNN, I do admire someone who asks about a word they don't know. Everyone should be issued a great dictionary upon completion of their GED or other degree. If someone doesn't have a dictionary in the home odds are they are seriously on the road to perdition.

Michael Fisher said...

The man didn't know and was not afraid to ask. What more can you arrogant ass Negroes (even the secret agent Negroes ones among you) ask for?

Given the anti-intellectual ignorance that is regularly espoused and approved off on this blog, that is a breath of fresh air.

(((shakin' head)))

Vince Spence said...

Dr. Pinsky misled poor D.L. Cantankerous does NOT mean hostile and rancorous does NOT mean angry. My iMac's dictionary and thesaurus (below) contradict Dr. Pinsky.

David, if you dislike D.L. for his previous attempts at humor on his show, fine. Why aggravate yourself by watching him again and again. Watch the Golf Channel.

cantankerous |kanˈta ng kərəs|
adjective
bad-tempered, argumentative, and uncooperative : a crusty, cantankerous old man.

cantankerous
adjective
See grumpy .
grumpy
adjective
Matthau's grumpy old man was a tour de force bad-tempered, crabby, ill-tempered, short-tempered, crotchety, tetchy, testy, waspish, prickly, touchy, irritable, irascible, crusty, cantankerous, curmudgeonly, bearish, surly, ill-natured, churlish, ill-humored, peevish, pettish, cross, fractious, disagreeable, snappish; informal grouchy, snappy, cranky, shirty, ornery. antonym good-humored.

rancor |ˈra ng kər| ( Brit. rancour)
noun
rancorous |-rəs| |ˈrøŋk(ə)rəs| adjective
rancorously |-k(ə)rəslē| |ˈrøŋk(ə)rəsli| adverb
bitterness or resentfulness, esp. when long-standing : he spoke without rancor

rancorous
adjective
California's rancorous recall campaign bitter, spiteful, hateful, resentful, acrimonious, malicious, malevolent, hostile, venomous, vindictive, baleful, vitriolic, vengeful, pernicious, mean, nasty; informal bitchy, catty. See note at vindictive . antonym amicable.

Vince Spence said...

michael fisher said...
The man didn't know and was not afraid to ask. What more can you arrogant ass Negroes (even the secret agent Negroes ones among you) ask for?

Given the anti-intellectual ignorance that is regularly espoused and approved off on this blog, that is a breath of fresh air.

Michael, the arrogance, ignorance and the IQ of many Americans have increased dramatically since Tuesday evening. D.L. is a comedian. I am certain his resume does not include 'philosopher' nor does it contain a whole bunch of letters before or after his name. It probably just stated, "I try to make people laugh..."

Lyndon said...

Sesquipedalian is a great word and it means given to using long words or a word that contains lotsa syllables.

If I don't understand a word when I'm reading I employ the trick my second grade teacher taught me: look at the context.

Obviously, Dr. Drew wasn't talking about how amenable and cordial each side was to each other.

C'mon D.L., this is is Bush-league Palin stuff. Look at the context.

btw, the verification word I have to enter is "loodyho."

"Damn, that girl is a loodyho. She smells like a dirty diaper wrapped in fish that's left out in the sun to bake."

Michael Fisher said...

" Cantankerous does NOT mean hostile and rancorous does NOT mean angry."

Which, by the way, is an excellent point I, knowing what the meaning of the words are, failed to point out.

In any case this begs the question. Since Dr. Pinsky gave the wrong answer what makes you think that he misled Hughley instead of being palin (I mean plain) dumb in view of his more than GED havin' self?

And what does that say about our professional wordsmith's intellectual prowess?

bklyn6 said...

Okay. So I guess D.L. doesn't stand for dictionary or lexicon, huh?

D.L. may have wrongly assumed that because he doesn't understand something his audience didn't either.

Yeah, I wanted to believe this too. Oh, well. :-/

maria said...

pinksy is a joke. the guy made his name on the love whatever show with offensive adam corrolla, and then on that crash and burn addiction treatment show.

what makes him an expert on that topic anyway? stupid choice.

we are watching the dumbing down of CNN. if that is possible. larry king is still on the air, after all.

MacDaddy said...

I recognize the historical significance of the show. But it's not good. First, the writing is not particularly good. Second, Hughley is not funny. Maybe if he read more, he might come up with some funny jokes. Cursing, or calling women bitches an hos, or calling blacks niggas at a time when we have elected the first black president in the U.S., is not funny anymore.

Undercover Black Man said...

And what does that say about our professional wordsmith's intellectual prowess?

I know your name is "Fisher," but your bait is easy to resist.

The president of the United States is a son of Africa, Michael. Didn't you hear the news? Why you still picking fights? You should be re-evaluating your "Global System of White Supremacy" in the context of millions of white people's passionate support of Barack Obama.

Undercover Black Man said...

I agree that someone with a limited vocabulary shouldn't have a talk show on CNN...

Especially, phx, if the job entails interviewing well-educated people.

maria said...

he might also need to consult a map.

DL doesn't seem to know there are 50 states. he was interviewing a trio of kenyan comedians; one said kenya now considers itself the 51st state. DL picked this up but kept saying "55th" state.

his interview with JJ Jr. wasn't too bad, tho.

http://www.cnn.com/2008/POLITICS/10/25/dl.hughley.videos/index.html

Undercover Black Man said...

D.L. may have wrongly assumed that because he doesn't understand something his audience didn't either.

That hadn't occurred to me, GG. But that makes sense. Maybe he was half looking out for the lesser-educated viewers.

But you're right about the attitude; it shifts the judgement by making Pinsky seem like a highfalutin bullshitter. "Make it plain, Doc. This ain't no SAT test."

To Vince Spense's point, I agree that Pinsky may have used the word "cantankerous" wrongly. A candidate can be cantankerous, but I don't know if a campaign can be cantankerous.

Undercover Black Man said...

DL picked this up but kept saying "55th" state.

NOOOOO!!!

Undercover Black Man said...

And thanks for the link, maria.

LennieG said...

even the secret agent Negroes ones among you

Hey UBM, you have secret agents running around here that you have not told us about?

LennieG said...

BTW...D.L. Ugly sets blacks back 100 years. Total coon, and stupid too.

He is no friend of black people That's the SAME man who embraced the "nappy headed negro" stance of Don Imus and said on national t.v. that the Rutgers students were "ugly" and "nappy headed".

SHAME on him! He's filth.

I don't blame the psychiatrist for using totally different dummed down vocabulary. It's not the psychiatrist's job to educate a fool.

Undercover Black Man said...

Hey UBM, you have secret agents running around here that you have not told us about?

Lynn, I think he was trying to pun on "Undercover."

Mad Hatter said...

Im not into DL very much, he's not funny to me.

Susie said...

Seems to me that talk shows on "news" channels have been dumbing down for a while, most likely in response to the dumbing down of the audience.

It could be because they are competing with the huge ratings pulled in by Fox News which isn't a news channel at all, but more an entertainment channel for people who don't care about facts, and like to feel "informed".

The fact that DL has a show on CNN is probably more to do with the cult of personality, and giving people what they want rather than his ability to do meaningful and intelligent interviews.

I haven't watched and probably won't so I can't judge, but my sense of Hughley from seeing him interviewed himself is that he may not be able to separate his ego from what he's doing/saying and that doesn't make for a conversation I want to listen to.

Edshugeo The GodMoor said...

"It could be because they are competing with the huge ratings pulled in by Fox News which isn't a news channel at all..."

The Daily Show (which I love) is probably not a positive influence on news-stations, either.

Michael Fisher said...

Mills...

"The president of the United States is a son of Africa, Michael. Didn't you hear the news? Why you still picking fights?"

Who is picking a fight? I'm just stating the obvious. You, being a professional wordsmith who clearly is berating a black person for asking about something he doesn't know while the supposed post-grad white person obviously doesn't know the correct meaning of the words that came out of self-same person's mouth either.

That pattern of behavior falls within your consistent racist bullshit about the supposed inherent average lower intelligence of black people.

As to the rest of your statement, (1) it is purely a distraction from the above, and (2) the day is young yet. Though if there is no SR/WS or Obama's election signals it's demise, I'll be the first to celebrate.

Undercover Black Man said...

^ To be in one's 40s and not know the meaning of "cantankerous" is worthy of berating.

To use the word imprecisely doesn't amount to ignorance. It's more in line with the day-to-day imprecision of language that characterizes modern America.

Michael Fisher said...

Mills...

"To use the word imprecisely doesn't amount to ignorance."

Is that so? If I, having been the beneficiary of a post-graduate education, were to say that your sentence meant "to use the word wrongly doesn't amount to ignorance", that would either mean that I am sloppy with language, ignorant despite my post-graduate education, or despite all of my education, purely stupid.

Nonetheless you are still making up excuses for Pinsky and shielding his obvious sloppiness or ignorance and/or stupidity.

Face it Mills. Past and present evidence shows that you've got an inbred racial prejudice against black folks and for white folks.

Which brings us to the "secret agent" stuff.

You've already admitted previously that in your daily life you are accepted by white people as white and see no need to correct them. Thus you are living (function) as white. Which means that, for all intents and purposes, you are white.

When you then spew the "black folks have inherently lower intelligence than whites" stuff, given that that is some hard-core racist bullshit, that makes you a white racist.

Logically then the "undercover black man" moniker functionally means to a white racist who poses as black.

Michael Fisher said...

Logically then the "undercover black man" moniker functionally means you are a white racist who poses as black.

Undercover Black Man said...

^ Hee-hee... you tickle me, Fish.

dez said...

pinksy is a joke. the guy made his name on the love whatever show with offensive adam corrolla

Actually, Dr. Drew was on Loveline long before they subbed in Adam as the offensive sidekick (previously filled by The Poorman). The guy knows his stuff and he's compassionate, too.

mel said...

UBM said:

"I’ll make this quick, because I don’t begrudge D.L. Hughley his CNN show. Really, I don’t. And I certainly don’t wanna behave like a crab in a barrel. Not after the week we just had."

You got PMS, UBM?
Wow.

I have a Master's, yet wouldn't have known the word cantankerous...and wouldn't judged another's intelligence based on his or her vocabulary.

I know people who would kick my ass (and probably yours) in a Vocab. standoff - But have negative levels of common sense....Are they smart? Or do they just subscribe to the Word-a-day emails?

Sometimes folks need to prove they're booksmart....Nobody f*ing talks like that just for shits n' giggles.

D.L. had an appropriate reaction -
And didn't look dumb.

If an expansive vocabulary is a prerequisite for a TV show, then is proper punctuation a prerequisite for having your own blog? If so, ya better get to editing.

Undercover Black Man said...

I have a Master's, yet wouldn't have known the word cantankerous...

Interesting admission, mel. Shameful, but interesting.

mel said...

Not as shameful as being a judgemental asshole...

quirkychick said...

I think the word that Dr. Pinsky was looking for was truculent. It would have been more accurate than any of the other words he came up with.

Anonymous said...

isn't it very possible that Hughley did know exactly what those words meant, but decided to make a BAD joke about not knowing what they meant?

I mean, haven't we heard this joke many times before?

Michael Fisher, you are an asshole. You need to grow the fuck up. You do pick fights, and you constantly do it over the stupidest of shit.

Your, seemingly, vast intelligence is contsantly undermined by your baby like antics on this website.

Undercover Black Man said...

Not as shameful as being a judgemental asshole...

I disagree, mel. Somebody's got to demand excellence. Or at least competence.

"Cantankerous" is a word that any English-speaking high school graduate should know.

mel said...

UBM said:

"I disagree, mel. Somebody's got to demand excellence. Or at least competence.
Cantankerous" is a word that any English-speaking high school graduate should know"


Would it be fair to say that those same high school graduates should also know what a fragment is?
"Or at least competence."

Undercover Black Man said...

^ You really want to keep going down this road, mel?

If so, then please Google the phrase "stylistic fragments."

Then ponder the concept, and perhaps get a good night's sleep. We can re-engage in the morrow.

mel said...

What road?

Is it THAT unfair to call you out on punctuation? Is it petty? I mean, you called out a guy over not knowing the meaning of some words....And did so in a fashion similar to a 7th grade school girl laughing at some kid wearing Kmart clothes.
I'm just trying to make a point.
Nobody cares whether you use fragments, or whether anybody else here spells shit correctly. So who gives a Flying F if he really has a horrid understanding of vocab??

I don't.

Cuz it's judgemental. (Note the fragment).

Undercover Black Man said...

^ You ain't called me out on shit yet.

How about citing some examples of my putatively poor punctuation?

And please be punctilious.

mel said...

You can stylistic fragment to your heart's delight. I should've seen that comin'....

Whatever.

Does it change my point?
Nope.
It means you have perfect grammar, yet you're still judgemental.

Somebody's GOT to demand excellence - And you chose to start with a talk show host?

Maybe I do need sleep.

Invisible Woman said...

You're red hot in the A.M., UBM.... :-)

Vince Spence said...

lyndon said...
Sesquipedalian is a great word and it means given to using long words or a word that contains lotsa syllables.

Does anyone know if there is a very long word that means, 'using very long words when short ones would suffice...'?

Undercover Black Man said...

^ I dunno, Vince, but I do know the opposite of that word: "Palinesque."

Undercover Black Man said...

You're red hot in the A.M., UBM....

Thanks, Invisible. Ain't nothin' but a hot-tub party in the House of Love.

;^)

Chickaboom said...

I'm thinking that it's not so much a crime that D.L. doesn't know the meanings of "cantankerous" or "rancorous", but that he felt the need to reveal that information to the rest of us. If I were the host, I'd keep that to myself, and trust that my viewers would either figure it out for themselves or take a peek at dictionary.com during the commercial break. Nothing wrong with admitting it, but he's got to work on his vocabulary on HIS time, not mine.

Did Dr. Drew use "cantankerous" incorrectly? McCain certainly gave off a "you kids get off my lawn" vibe, and he certainly maintained a rancorous campaign, in word and deed.

WTH. I'm just waiting for "nincompoop" to make a comeback. Just so I can shout "what complete nincompoopery!" and not have to dumb it down and ruin the magic. ;)

PS. Expecting more from those in the media is not an unfair expectation - color has nothing to do with it. It is nincompoopery to suggest otherwise. If a book came out full of grammatical, spelling, or historical errors, you'd criticize the editor and/or publisher, wouldn't you? I would.

phx said...

Chickaboom is totally after my heart. I especially like her advocacy of the word nincompoopery. As I recall, that particular form of the word was used very effectively in the classic movie "Life With Father" by William Powell. Unforgettable.
And she is right, standards are standards. I confess my expectations for CNN are very low, however, and frankly I don't bother much with them.

destruction said...

To Everyone:

9 out of 10 Adults in this country could not get out bed and get an 80 or better on a G.E.D. test.

Try it yourself.....and know REAL shame......and learn NEW Respect.

Any takers?

Undercover Black Man said...

^ The math would probably kick my ass, but the rest I'm sure I could handle.

phx said...

I don't know, I hear the molecular biology section is tough too.

Invisible Woman said...

I took that GED when my father was so sick of my shenanigans and I almost became a emancipated minor (he didn't think I would take the bait to go out on my own).

It was laughably easy, sorry. I breezed through it like it was a second grade spelling contest.

My scoring scared Poppy, and he quickly made me a deal to stay at home and stay in school, haha!

destruction said...

Fair enough UBM.(BTW, i think your Lil Ed comments section has been compromised.)

I love it when people say "I don't know"....then continue writing or talking. Do YOU know molecular biology....or are you one of those people who say things like, 'That violates the laws of physics', but can't name a single law besides, "What goes up must come down?"

Fact is, passing high school, especially public h.s. is pretty easy.... They parcel out a little info....drill u daily....then test you after 2 or 3 weeks.

After this, you can jettison that info....and repeat. Unit and Final tests are usually preceded by a Review sheet containing 50 to 99 percent of what's gonna be on that test. This info is again forgotten, never to be referred to again. One big Rinse and Repeat.

To pass the G.E.D. you've got to store 4 years worth of material in your brain at one time. After being away from the whole education system or process for several to many years. It's an oversimplification.....but I'm hope I made my point.

dez said...

It's an oversimplification.....but I'm hope I made my point.


That you wouldn't pass the English component? Point taken ;-D

destruction said...

Point made...

and I'll admit, that I didn't get your point till the second read.

What else is a real shame is that most people can't laugh at themselves or admit that they're wrong. That in itself would reduce violence in this country by 50 percent.

Rusty Eagle said...

Damn, that's sad, but D. L. has leaned on that GED joke for a minute. I hate when a black person jokes about ignorance and then the others play into it like Weber.

WATCH US EXPLODE! said...

Maybe this is why Hughley's on CNN - Ted Turner thinks his brainchild network doesn't have enough humor... here he is on Letterman last night:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bebk_ParlL8

Geneva Girl said...

Can't believe that this conversation is still going on. I must say that it has, in fact, changed my life. UBM, did you think you'd have such an impact?

I sit down every night to do homework with my six year old who goes to school in French. My French is okay, but this first grade homework is kicking my butt! Every night there are at least three words that I don't know. And, I didn't care that I didn't know. Who really cares what the French word for field mouse is? (mulot)

If there was something she didn't know in her English homework, I'd make her look it up. (She loves her dictionary!) I've sadly been lax with her French. If she didn't know a work, I said, "Ask your teacher." Talk about lazy parenting!

Then I thought about this blog and realized just how ignorant I was being. I'd be the first person calling somebody out for such lax behavior with English homework. And, yes, I'm one of those moms who sucks her teeth at the parents who don't read with their kids. Yeah, yeah, I'm a hypocrite.

So, we got out the dictionary last night and looked up every French word that we didn't know. She only missed three words and I, six. (Sad, isn't it?) She worked on her dictionary skills and I straightened out my attitude.

So, UBM, thank you for adding another 20 minutes to homework time and to your readers for making me see the error of my ways.

Undercover Black Man said...

^ Bless you for that wonderful comment, Geneva Girl. If your daughter loves the dictionary, I think you've got a future writer on your hands. Because that's definitely how it starts.

I've read dictionaries for fun my whole life.