At least try not to swear in annoyance when caught swearing...

There are some four letter words that put the fear of God, or the wrath of the Titans, into some people.  You know what they are; I don’t need to spell them out to you. Swearwords, curses, profanities.

I don’t really know why you shouldn’t swear.  Why you wouldn’t.  In fact I’d really rather you did swear than didn’t.  I’d rather you diidn’t bottle up all your annoyance and rage and anger.  Let it bubble only to explode with a satisfying bang.  Fuck! There are so many one-syllable swearwords for a reason.  They are made to be yelled in anger at feckless referees.  To be spat out in fury in the heat of an argument.  Or yowled out in pain when you’ve stubbed your toe.

Why call a person who is behaving in a completely inappropriate manner a fool, when you can label them a fuckwit, a twat, a cunt.  And yes, I am very aware of all the gendered implications here.  But then I am also very aware of the gendered implications of less obscene language and other cultural facets.  I do not live a mute and sedentary life because of them.  For me, it’s all those lovely t’s and k’s and c’s – so crisp and delicious and biting.  More often than not it is the sound of these words, more than the meaning, that makes them so effective

Still, better not to overdo it; you loose the potency that way.  I have a friend who swears like Shazzer from Bridget Jones Diary.  Effing and blinding every other word.  I only join her occasionally for dramatic effect.  Of course, it’s made better because we swear like Northerners, mainly because we are Northern.  That is to say, we swear properly: say bastard instead of baaaahhhhstard.  Short sounds, used sparingly to show emotion.

Because that’s the key – they are to show emotion.  And the emotion is going to be there with or without the swearword. What annoys me most is the lack of sincerity of people who refuse to swear.  If the sentiment is there then I would rather you show it.  Better to let it out in an expletive explosion than cover it up with some nicety – “sugar” instead of “shit”, “fruit” for “fuck”.  Because, otherwise, that’s just semantic insincerity.  And if there’s anything that is rude and reprehensible, deserving of the wrath of the Titans, it is dishonesty.

 

Claire Bagnall