UM is coming - Michael Erard's new book

A book is coming out from a friend and supporter of this site, Michael Erard. The book, UM, is about, among other things, the mysteries of that sublime linguistic object, 'um' - or erm, as the Brits put it, or hein, as it appears in French, to the bewilderment of all students of French, forever and forever. Here's the site for the book. I can testify that Michael does not look like the solemn guy whose phiz graces that page - but bookjacket pictures are always a fucker, an uncertain compromise between the dyspeptic seriousness of a man whose been locked in a closet and chuckleheaded foolishness of a man who should be secured in a straight jacket. They eternally grate against an author's vanity, which is why, when an author shot, by some miracle, comes out right, the author has a tendency to use it book after book, giving the book jacket a slightly Dorian Gray feeling. Beryl Bainbridge's novels are a perfect example - novels that you know were written by a 50 to 60 year old woman are graced by a picture of a thirty year old woman, at the most.

Now, go to the UM page, PEOPLE!