Mark Twain said:
“Under certain circumstances, profanity provides a relief denied even to prayer.”
On the other hand, I’ve been using increasing amounts of profanity these past years, and seriously need to go on a potty-mouth-free diet in order to cleanse my system, so I’m fortunate in having read the first few books of the hilarious Space Team series by Barry J. Hutchison, where the universal translators don’t translate imprecations, so now I can say things like:
What the fonk?!?
I’m also fortunate in finding The Good Place to binge upon on Netflix. Their universal translator doesn’t do imprecations, either, so now I can also choose to say:
What the fork?!?
It’s good to increase one’s vocabulary. It gives one choices.
This post is part of Linda G. Hills weekly blog hop, One-Liner Wednesday. If you have a one-liner or just like them, follow the link.
A WRITING PROMPT FROM ME TO YOU: Someone must suppress warranted profanity.
AnklebusterJune 24, 2020 at 8:12am
My all-time favorite from the Universal Translator is “Mickey Fickey”. A commercial actor used it and it shocked my funny-bone more than the original imprecation would have shocked the FCC (whose members, apparently, devised the Universal Translator during an episode of Mr. Roger’s Neighborhood.)
Marian AllenJune 24, 2020 at 9:13am
Dan AntionJune 24, 2020 at 10:07am
My best friend uses “what the foop” and “what the faruk” but only “foop” is made into other forms line “fooping idiot.”
Marian AllenJune 24, 2020 at 10:26am
Remember Ironsides? “Flaming” was his go-to, as in “flaming idiot.”
Dan AntionJune 24, 2020 at 11:35am
Ha! You’re right.
John HoltonJune 24, 2020 at 12:45pm
I was reading a book on the Python programming language, and they had a line, “Profanity is the language every programmer understands.”
Marian AllenJune 24, 2020 at 1:16pm
Ohmygosh, I love it!
Ally BeanJune 24, 2020 at 1:29pm
When Eleanor Shellstrop says ‘”holy forking shirt balls” I laugh every time. I say it now, too– because she’s a good role model.
Marian AllenJune 24, 2020 at 3:47pm
spits coffee all over the keyboard
Alicia Butcher EhrhardtJune 24, 2020 at 9:47pm
I suppress a lot of profanity when I write – as I engender situations which require it.
If I didn’t, the effect when I DO use it would be diluted. Which is what happens when every other word is mf in the mouths of the current generations.
And I will use an m-dash – and let the reader fill in: “What the f–” or equivalent.
Most adults have enough vocabulary to fill these spaces. If they don’t, good for them.
It’s the GWTW method.
Marian AllenJune 25, 2020 at 8:52am
I cuss a lot more in person than I do in fiction. A lot of my characters use mild profanity, but very few of them dive very deep into it. Some do, because that’s how they talk. Part of that abstemiousness was due to my mother: She liked for me to read my stuff to her, and I got tired of skipping words or replacing a bad one with a mild one; it was just easier to write more creatively.
Alicia Butcher EhrhardtJune 25, 2020 at 12:39pm
Still bringing you up, eh?
Marian AllenJune 25, 2020 at 12:50pm
Mom passed two years ago, but she’s still bringing me up. Probably always will be, and I’m glad to have her here in my head with me. 🙂
Alicia Butcher EhrhardtJune 25, 2020 at 7:22pm
Mine isn’t in there enough, because she had many years of not really being with us before she died, but she and my maternal grandmother are both in there forever. For good.
Marian AllenJune 26, 2020 at 8:04am
“For good.” Well said, my friend, well said.
RAAckerman@Cerebrations.bizJune 25, 2020 at 9:02am
The Good Place didn’t start that- the SyFy channel used those years ago- Continuum or Caprica- about a decade ago.