Friday, January 7, 2011

Lives of Our Leaders: Watch Out for Your Boner

John Boehner, whose name is pronounced variously as “Bo-ner,” “Bay-ner,” or, for Francophiles, “Bonheur” (for the sake of argument, we’ll stick with Boner), is the new Speaker of the House. He is known to be a hard man, except on those occasions when he makes a boner. Ostensibly he’s had one of those, since he has daughters. There is also a picture of him hugging Nancy Pelosi. It’s hard to decipher what all the hugging is about, since Boehner’s Republican party is out to undo all of President Obama’s work, particularly healthcare reform. Without being crass, can we assume it has to do with one of the pronunciations, or mispronunciations, of his name? Boehner, the Times points out, has a hard job. He has to satisfy the Tea Partiers, who want “to cut spending and rein in what they see as an overactive government” (“Taking Control, G.O.P. Overhauls Rules in House,” NYT, 1/6/11), while living up to his promise “to run the chamber in a more inclusive and business like way,” which presumably means not tea-bagging his opponents. The Times also reported that Boehner’s wife “kept hitting on the theme of how she and her husband are ‘just normal, average people’” (“Speaker’s Wife Emphasizes ‘Normal, Average’ Life,” NYT, 1/6/11). Mrs. Boehner, the Times reported, bought “a $100 beige dress from Dillard’s to meet Queen Elizabeth II at a state dinner in Washington in 2007.” It looks like you have to give up a few things when you marry into a family of Boehners.


  1. Interestingly, in a southern dialect of Swahili, Pelosi is a pejorative diminutive for a lady's organ.

  2. Hi Jacques,so in essence then the boner is the perfect repository for a pelosi SP


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