The Unjust Whine

“Are you staring at Facebook again?” says Wifey. “You spend way too much time on that nonsense.”

“Well, no, I’m actually not on FB, Dear. I’m writing another entry for the ‘Wifey Chronicles’ if you must know. But that’s the third time this month you’ve accused me of being a FB moron... which actually fits perfectly what I’m writing about, THE UNJUST WHINE.    So thank you.”

“I see. THE UNJUST WHINE sounds very much like THE REGISTRY OF SLIGHTS... your last FB foppery, doesn’t it?”

“Only if you fail to grasp the distinction between a SLIGHT and an UNJUST WHINE, Dear.”

“Which is?”

“Well, for starters, the Slight is intentional, a form sarcasm designed to hurt the recipient. Sarcasm comes from the Greek, meaning ‘to tear flesh,’ you know.   But a Slight is just a tiny, cowardly scratch of the flesh, you could say.  Whereas, an Unjust Whine is less intentional... more just a bad habit of the whiner.    Oh, and ‘foppery’? A Slight.”

“And wouldn’t writing a whole big dialogue about the Unjust Whine... aimed at me... be itself a gigantic, hypocritical example of the UNJUST WHINE?”

“Clever, Dear.  But no... not if it was JUST, first of all. And secondly, a real whine implies a certain irritating intonation in the voice box.   You can’t really whine in print, though it could be an unjust commentary, I suppose. And thirdly, why do you assume
it’s aimed at you?   I only said your FB complaint... aimed at me... was a good

“No, you said it was an article for The Wifey Chronicles.   It was aimed at me!”

“You catch me on every logical slip as usual, Dear.   Does your logic sometimes fog the spirit of the matter?”

“Now my logic is unjust?   Who’s the real WHINER here?”

“Touche.   But my original thought about the Unjust Whine came from my observation of what a colossal WHINE all of our public discourse has become.   Especially in politics, but in almost any discussion these days, people seem to be whining at each other.   It’s UNJUST if it opposes your opinion and JUST if it agrees... but it’s all WHINING.”

“Well, if that was your original point about the UNJUST WHINE, you might have been onto something I could champion.   But I’m betting all the examples you’ve included so far are about me.   So let’s have a look at the document so far.”

“Agenbite of inwit, Dear?”


“It’s a Joycean term... code for guilty conscience. You’re assuming it’s all about your whining perhaps because you fear it’s a JUST commentary.   Is that possible?”

“I see.   Well here’s a bit of code for you.   KMA!”