When beefy populist Ed Schultz called conservative firebrand Laura Ingraham a "right-wing slut" and a "talk slut" on his radio show Tuesday, we knew a suspension from MSNBC and a stilted public apology would soon follow.

Sure enough, the network suspended Schultz one week without pay yesterday, and he appeared at the top of his broadcast to say how sorry he was. But here's the thing: he really seemed to mean it. It wasn't a made-for-TV, I'm-sorry-for-any-pain-my-words-may-have-caused mea culpa. It was a shaggy, ah-geez-what-was-I-thinking exercise in self-flagellation. It didn't always make sense, but that was part of the charm. In addition to Ingraham, he apologized to his wife, six kids, eight grandchildren, and his "company," which is to say NBC.

It was a far cry from Ingraham's first official response on Facebook, which included a plug for the audio edition of her new book Of Thee I Zing.

Update: All is forgiven. Ingraham just tweeted: "Ed Schultz: apology accepted." Awww, you guys....