April 25, 2008
The fine art of cursing
Originally published May 31, 2004
The proper use of profanity has been cheapened and defiled by gangsta rappers, professional athletes and people who never were trained in the art of good cussing. I really hate to see poor, ignorant foul-mouths abusing our colorful language that way.
I was trained to curse by some true experts. I never heard my father use a foul word until I started playing golf with him. Then I learned that my dad could cuss a golf ball as well as anyone on the planet. He was imaginative and creative in his cussing, too. He didn't use the same lines over and over.
"Sit DOWN, you wicked bitch! Don't fuck me like that! Awww, you heartless whore. Go on into the water, you rotten piece of shit! You need a goddam bath anyway, cocksucker." My dad could have been an excellent Marine drill sergeant.
I pride myself on have a very educated foul mouth.
But I also agree with this guy that turning off the cuss-instinct is difficult to do sometimes. I try not to cuss around Quinton or Jack, because little pitchers have big ears. If you say "fuck!" one time around a young'un, you can bet your sweet ass that it's coming back at you very quickly. I don't want my son to cuss until he's old enough to know what he's cussing about.
I learned to cuss well from a lot of time playing guitar in bars and working 24 years in a chemical plant. Some people just can't understand the message you're attempting to send unless you reinforce it with some creative cursing.
Handle a heckler in a bar. If you can't out-cuss that troll-like bastard, you're fucked, right there on stage. You've gotta put a big chomp on his nasty ass right off the bat, humiliate him in front of his audience, or he'll heckle all night long. I could chainsaw those assholes.
Working in heavy industry, I found myself bossing a lot of rough cobs. If you tip-toe around such people, say please and thank you, they'll eat you alive. I am not a big man. In fact, I'm kinda short and a lot skinnier than I want to be. But I had a job to do, and I relied on sheer, unmitigated attitude, combined with creative cursing to keep those people in line.
If I ever cursed an employee in front of a witness, I was subject to a grievance from the union, so I usually did it with no one else around. But when the time was right, I let fly.
"Just what the fuck did you think you were doing? I ain't puttin' up with that kind of assholery on my watch. If you can't get your shit in one sock and do your job the right way, I'll have your nutsack flying from the front-office flagpole tomorrow. I'll cook you like a goddam Christmas goose. And if you think I'm lying, you dipshit, just go back out there and fuck up again. I'll have your ass on a stick over the hottest fire YOU ever felt."
Mr. Rogers, I wasn't.
Cursing sometimes is a very effective way to get an important point across to someone who doesn't want to listen. I keep practicing every day.
All content © Rob Smith