Swearing.

October 25, 2007

I love it. Cursing, cussing, whatever you call it. I call it swearing.

There’s nothing quite like the simple pleasure of exclaiming “fuck!” when something goes wrong. Nothing quite like muttering “balls!” when you’ve forgotten something. Nothing quite like quietly whispering “bugger!” when you’re running late.

  1. Fuck! Bugger!
  2. Shit! Crap! Shite! Pish!
  3. Bollocks! Arse! Balls! Tits!
  4. Fucker! Bastard! Dick! Dickhead! Cunt!

Let’s analyse these. I realise that there are a lot more, but they seem to follow the same trend.

Category number 1 is often used in the “something has gone wrong” setting. So why do we associate “something bad happening” with sex (formerly) and anal sex (latterly)? Surely, perhaps based on your level of participation and which genitalia an accident of genetics granted you, both are good things?*

Category 2 this time focusses on waste matter. This is at least a little easier to understand: while the act of passing waste is, generally, a fairly enjoyable experience (especially if you have something to read while you make your way through the process), I do understand that for most people, waste is waste. It’s rejected by the body, and should be disposed of.**

Category 3 focusses directly on body parts. But why, in particular, do we use bodily features which are essentially secondary sexual organs, those parts of the body which define our shape and who we should be attractive to, as swear words? Surely, they may dangle or wobble a bit and be unsightly at times, but everybody’s dangles, wobbles, and sometimes looks unsightly.

Category 4 targets an individual, perhaps an arch nemesis. These are highly varied, but so often concentrate on primary sexual organs. I happen to like (and, dare I say it, enjoy) my penis, so why should I call somebody I dislike a “dick”? It’s brought me much pleasure over the years.

I find it all rather curious. If we’re using body parts, why do we never exclaim “arms!”? If we’re using waste, why do we never shout “bogies!”

It just seems odd to me.

* For the record, I’ve never really understood anal sex. Why would I want to put my winky into somebody’s bumhole? No thanks. That said, if somebody really wanted to … it would surely be impolite to refuse. A caveat of being male: I like putting my penis into things. 

** I don’t understand watersports, etc. Nope, sorry. If the hottest girl on earth wanted to pee/shit in my mouth, I’d politely try to sway her opinion toward something I found palatable.