Magazine February 6, 2012, Issue

Ha. Ha. Ha.

Stephen Colbert inside the White House press-briefing room, July 27, 2007 (Larry Downing/Reuters)
Stephen Colbert’s NPR LOL

If everyone who used the acronym “LOL” were actually engaged in the act of Laughing Out Loud, the world would be ringing with the happy sound of laughter pretty much all of the time. It would be an irritating place to live, but you couldn’t say it wasn’t mirthful.

Mostly, of course, they’re not laughing. They may be smiling wryly or nodding in agreement or noting in a subdued fashion the wit behind a statement, but they’re not laughing out loud. They’re agreeing.

Laughing out loud — as opposed to LOLing — is what happens when someone says something or does something

In This Issue

Articles

Features

Books, Arts & Manners

Sections

The Week

The Week

Mismanaged and lacking strategic direction, the Gingrich campaign may be in need of a leveraged buyout.

Recommended

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The Great Elucidator

The Great Elucidator

An inspiring one-hour documentary about the conservative public intellectual Thomas Sowell serves as a superb intro to his thinking.