I'm a grown up, dammit! And as a grown up I should be able to cuss like a truck driver in my own home if I want to. And I do want to, pretty much daily. There is just so much to cuss about in my life. Plus it's fun.
But it looks like I will have to start watching what I say. My mom has asked me to clean up my language as a Mother's Day present to her. Can you believe it? Here is how the conversation went down:
Me: What do you want for Mother's Day?
Mom: Oh, you don't need to get me anything, honey. You need to save your money so you can buy that new transmission for your car.
Me: It's not that bad, Mom. I can afford to get you something and take you to lunch. So what do you think you'd like?
Mom: No, no. I don't want anything.
Me: Mom! Come on.
Mom: Well, okay then. If you want to do something nice for me for Mother's Day, then what I'd really like is for you to stop using so much profanity - especially taking the Lord's name in vain. It hurts my ears and makes you sound uneducated. That would be the best present you could give me.
Me: Fuck, Mom! Wouldn't you rather have a pair of earrings instead?
I wonder why I love to curse so much? Neither of my parents did much of it. My dad absolutely hated bad language. He thought it was low class. My mom thought the same although every once in a while if she broke a dish, or stubbed her toe, she might cry out, "oh, hell's bells!"
When that happened my dad would be shocked.
"Really, Sarah," he'd admonish. "There is no need for that kind of talk!"
Thus chastened, my mom would look suitably ashamed.
My dad's favorite insult was to call someone a turkey. He was prone to road rage and loved to scream and complain about other people's driving, but the most he would ever do was roll down his window and shake his fist at the driver who'd angered him and yell out, "why don't you get off the road, you turkey!"
Hmmmm, now I'm wondering if he got that expression from watching the show Good Times?
I must have been about eight or so, the first time I heard some older kid utter the word bullshit. I loved it. It seemed so thrillingly bad.
"Bullshit," I'd whisper over and over to myself, liking the hissing shhh sound of it.
I always had an attitude problem at school, and muttering "bullshit" under my breath felt satisfyingly defiant.
"What did you say, young lady?" my third grade teacher would ask, glaring at me suspiciously.
"Nothing," I'd answer with an innocent face, but inside I'd be thinking, "heh, heh."
Ahh, the sweet memories of youth!
Well, anyway, it looks like those days are over. I promised Mom to clean up my language and I will. It's going to be hard though. I'm a verbal person who doesn't believe in bottling up feelings. So I've decided to come up with a few cuss word substitutes.
This is what I've written down so far:
For some reason, everything I can think of sounds like dialogue from an Erskine Caldwell novel about southern degenerates. Does anyone have any good suggestions?
Happy Mother's Day, Mom. I love you so cottonpickin' much!