Laurel, nonerstwhile friend and fellow grammar-obsessive, has brought this site to my attention. It's a blog devoted to hatin' on the use of "literally" as an intensifier, singling out amusing mental-image generators such as "Kurdistan is literally exploding with confidence."
Here's the thing (because there is always a thing): I don't actually mind "literally" being used in a, well, nonliteral sense. It bugs me a teensy bit, but we use words like "really," "truly," and "actually" in nonliteral ways all the time, and no one seems to think twice about it.
I mean yes, I mourn the loss of precision in language. What word can I use to indicate that I mean what it is that I'm describing in a nonfigurative sense? I suppose I could say this is for real, in reality, not metaphorically happening. Still, while this is a linguistic irk, it's not a real cause for concern.
What is a real cause for concern: the issue of In Touch Weekly that I was reading over the shoulder of the lady next to me on the subway this morning had a picture of Kid Rock* wearing a t-shirt that throws out a big ol' fuck-you to proper apostrophe usage. I can't seem to find it online anywhere, so you will have to mentally imagine this being worn on the person of a stringy-haired dude in a porkpie hat who somehow managed to land Pamela Anderson:
I swear, the church of When In Doubt, Add An Apostrophe is growing faster than Scientology. I am not happy about this, Kid. I am angry. I am literally fuming. No, literally. There is actual steam rising from my ears. Literally.
Anyway, for his transgressions, I am fining Mr. Rock:
one (1) session of washing his hair
one (1) session of shaving his oddly early-pubescent-looking facial hair COMPLETELY off
seventeen (17) sessions of being smacked over the head with an apostrophe-shaped piece of wood.
*apropos of very little, i would like to pass along some advice to any of you wannabe celebrities out there. Please, for the love of god, do not refer to your age - or to any sort of relative oldness - in your self-appended stage name. Sonic Youth, you are all now in your late 40s, and are by no means Youthful. Kid Rock, you are not a Kid (nor, technically speaking, do you Rock). And for that matter, Debbie Harry, if people conflate you with your band - which is named Blondie - you should probably not dye your hair dark red. Let's use some forethought, people.