The British press loves to make fun of American prudishness–presumably because our papers decline to put topless gals on Page 3–and this story, spotted and Tweeted by Bloggerdad, is no exception. The Guardian is reporting that a California school district is banning Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary, tenth edition, because its definition of “oral sex” actually tells readers what the words mean. (They seem a little late to the party: M-W moved on to its eleventh edition in 2003.)
Of course, dictionaries can be useful in these matters—particularly if, in matters of oral sex, it depends what the definition of “is” is. But all the same, I can see why they’re upset. A situation like this just begins with a little sensation, and gradually grows until it’s throbbing and huge and everyone’s raring to go. Mostly they’re mouthing off, blowing off steam, but eventually they really get into the back-and-forth. Everyone gets really overheated, and just when you think it can’t get any more intense it does. Then the TV cameras show up, and that’s when everything erupts.