Friday, April 18, 2008
Bumps and Obscene Italian Hand Gestures
I don't like to watch Stephen Colbert. The guy is very smart and clever, but a little too smug and sure of himself for my taste. There's something disturbing and sophomoric about that kind of in-crowd humor, which trivializes some very serious and consequential business, if you ask me.
So it's no surprise that I missed Senator Clinton's appearance on the "Reporr" last night. But I guess Colbert gave her a boost, or so he claims, while having fun at her expense.
From staff writer Andrea Thompson at livescience.com today, running under the headline "Scientist Finds Truthiness in 'Colbert Bump,'" we have: With the intense competition between the two contenders for the Democratic presidential nomination, pundits have mused over whether Hillary Clinton's appearance on "The Colbert Report" last night will give the former First Lady a so-called "Colbert bump," a surge in popularity which the show's host claims will accrue to any politician that appears on the show.
Now, neither Colbert nor Mrs. Clinton could have missed the double entendre which implies that the 60-year-old Senator is with child, impregnated by the talk show host and comedian, given the numerous connotations of that word, "bump."
Stephen Colbert first coined the eponymous term on his show after John Hall won in a close election to become a representative from New York in 2006 after an appearance on the "Report." Hall defeated incumbent Sue Kelly, who had declined to make an appearance on the show. Colbert himself commented on this after the election...
I'm also certain that the sign Colbert is throwing in this photograph is interpreted by unsophisticated people, or those with limited powers of attention and concentration, as a victory sign. In fact, Colbert is knowledgeable enough and sharp enough to know that what he's doing is an obscene Italian hand gesture, and that the palm of the hand faces toward the audience when the intent is to make the "peace" sign.