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Update: Shibboleth

I was discussing this post from yesterday with Lauren and Kerbey Lane ( Eggs, Biscuits & Gravy, you know it’s good for the soul ) and was recalling this particular section.

I think this phrase, quite like no other, is a shibboleth of “I went to a university and got a degree of consequence” . Ironically, it is usually the people who adopted the shibboleth for exactly that reason, who most misuse it, leaving your fry cook’s teeth it ill-repair owing to the induced gnashing.

The discussion went something like this:

Lauren: So you wrote that people use “beg the question” as a shibbloleth of having had “higher education”. Me: Yes. Lauren: But that you know the word “shibboleth” is a shibboleth of that selfsame phenomenon: “I have higher education and am using a word for its shibbolethic power.” Me: Yes, and because the meaning of shibboleth is appropriate to use to describe the phenomenon.

I could be off in my count, but that’s a triple-irony-count discourse score.

She asked if I could count on my readers ( all 4 of you ) to correctly discern the weird subtlety afoot. If you did, you think I’m ridiculously ham-handed. If not, you may still think I’m ham-handed, but you may think that I was making a very inane joke.

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