Stephen Colbert turns state motto on its head

“In the last part of the show… Colbert typically leaps up from his desk and bounds across the set to a table in front of a fireplace with the Latin motto ‘Videri quam esse’ (“To seem to be, rather than to be”), where he interviews a guest about a new book or movie….”

— From a profile of Stephen Colbert in the New York Times Sunday Magazine.

Not having been aware of Colbert’s uncredited adaptation (corruption? usurpation?) of North Carolina’s state motto, I laughed out loud (sorry, kids, of course I meant LOL’d). Apparently the Latinate mantel inscription was added during a set makeover a year or so ago.