12/10/2012 06:04 pm ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

Words That Shaped Last Week: "Royal Baby," "Freaks and Geeks," and "Jan Brewer"

By Juli Weiner, Vanity Fair


For your edification, a look back at the phrases, nouns, and neologisms that have, for better or for worse, shaped the week's national discourse.

In memoriam: Oscar Niemeyer.

Royal baby [roy-uhl bay-bee], noun: The most famous fetus in the English-speaking world; a glob of cells -- a very glamorous glob of cells, we're sure -- that is currently third in line for the throne of England.

Hyperemesis gravidarum [hy-pur-uh-mee-sus grah-vi-dahr-um], noun: A severe form of morning sickness that's treated with extended hospital stays and oddly bridal-ish bouquets of yellow flowers; famous sufferers include Kate Middleton and... no one else off the top of our heads.

Freaks and Geeks [freeks nd geeks], noun: The beloved, Judd Apatow-created, single-season television series, the oral history of which is just one of the many phenomenal features in Vanity Fair's first-ever comedy issue, guest-edited by Apatow himself.

Bo Obama [boh oh-bah-muh], noun: The star, two years running!, of the official White House Christmas card; the star, four years running!, of our puppy-ownership fantasies.

Jan Brewer [jan boo-uhr], noun: The peripatetic Arizona governor who might choose to select "peripatetic" as the nicest adjective half the country would use to describe her.

Jim DeMint [gym dih-mint], noun: The outgoing South Carolina senator and incoming president of the Heritage Foundation; Roland Burris's predecessor--fingers crossed!

One Direction [won duh-rek-shun], noun: A group of disappointed young gentleman who recently found out that Grammy voters decided to go another direction.

Lunatic [loon-uh-tick], noun: A term -- much like the phrase "Are we positive we want to be spending time on this?" -- that has been banned from Congress.

More from Vanity Fair:
25 Years in the Life of Model Kate Moss
Lady Gaga, Angelina Jolie and Jennifer Aniston: Vanity Fair's Classic Nude Portraits
Royal Babies Photo Scrapbook
Backstage at the 2012 Victoria's Secret Fashion Show