17 different women, 36 crazy children, 0 babies in utero
Adventures, Advice and Questions from a group of Mormon women who met in Queens, NY and have now scattered all over the place.

Thursday, November 30, 2006

Creative Language

Growing up as I did (not a member of the church) I feel my frustration/pain vocabulary was pretty common - your "s" word, your "f" bomb, and variations on those themes. I was pretty good at using them, and in high school and college got in the habit (as many that age do) of sprinkling them liberally into every conversation. And then, I started dating a young man, now my husband. As a member of the church, he wasn't so down with the swearing, and so I did my best to watch my mouth around him. And then, I went and joined the church myself, and had to start watching my mouth ALL the time. So, what's a girl to do when she stubs her toe or drops a piece of china?

Make it up!

Looking back, my vocabulary was quite stunted by the availability of your common swears. Now that I have excised them from my vocabulary (okay, not COMPLETELY, I'm not going to lie, they do come out rarely) I've had to get truly creative with my phrasings. Here are some of the gems that I use often, or that I have heard others use and truly appreciate:

mother puss-bucket red
piss pocket
bun of a sitch
oh mylanta (replacing "oh my ___")

I'm actually quite thankful that I got into the habit of using cleaner language before I became a mom. Otherwise, I'm sure I'd be "slipping" all the time, and my adorable little blondie would be saying things that no 3-year-old should. So far, the worst to come out of his mouth is "crap!" (and boy did I feel like an idiot the first time he said that...) but I'm sure school will fix that soon enough!

So, what (clean and creative things) do you say when you've locked your keys in your car while it was running? Or tripped over the lego tower in the dark hallway? Or dropped the glass pan of lasagna as you pulled it out of the oven?


  • My sister always says "holy mother of pearl" (instead of holy anything else) and it's become a common phrase in our family.
    posted by Anonymous Anonymous at 11/30/2006 01:08:00 PM  

  • I say CRAP all the time, and have yet to hear my daughter say it. She imitates me with RATS and SHOOT.

    I was SO good about not swearing for a hundred years, it is only the past few that I have actually sworn a few times. I even called my DH a swear word this year for the first time ever. I brought that up to him the other day and he had totally forgotten, I was glad, and than mad that I reminded him.

    I say Mylanta sometimes. I think RATS and BLOODY BATTLEAX are my faves
    posted by Blogger Kage at 11/30/2006 01:16:00 PM  

  • I'm one of those people who have only sworn a handful of times their entire life. When I was a kid my dad used to say "fiddlesticks!" when he'd get mad. (It was really hard not to laugh, especially when my friend would play an imaginary fiddle behind his back.)

    I don't think I use many exclamations, myself. "Holy cow" mostly, I guess.
    posted by Anonymous Susan M at 11/30/2006 03:13:00 PM  

  • wow. I feel sheepish. I usually just say the real thing. And yesterday when I got locked out of the house in the snow with my very small and shivering chihuahua I was repeating all of them quite a bit. Guess thats something I should nip in the bud before I have kids. Though, I was raised in a house where swearing was not an infrequent occurance. My grandma and dad (lifetime members both) regularly called us kids "little S***'s". Maybe I will have to adopt some of your subsititutions, especially the bun of a stitch, as the real phrase comes out of my mouth alot.
    posted by Anonymous Veritas at 11/30/2006 03:43:00 PM  

  • A fav of mine is "GOOD NIGHT!" or how about "SHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH," It starts it, but just doesn't complete it.
    posted by Blogger wendysue at 11/30/2006 05:05:00 PM  

  • We (my sisters and I) have created a really random goup of quasi swear words that I have used liberally when needed.

    1.Farmer! (I am kind of over that one... but I used to say it all the time. )

    2. Shee-ite Muslim! (SO not PC -but it could be worse!)

    3. THe Oh-so-typical variations of "freakin'", "frikin'" etc..

    4."Shiste!" and my very own
    "shist-er" I don't know if that's the correct spelling but it's the German version of S--T, unfortunately I grew up hearing both my Grandma and mom both slip it!
    posted by Blogger Rachel H at 11/30/2006 05:07:00 PM  

  • My husband says "Slug in a ditch" My kids think it's funny :)
    posted by Anonymous Anonymous at 11/30/2006 05:47:00 PM  

  • Rachel H, that reminds me, I commonly use the phrase "losing my shee-ite" or "losing her shee-ite", so I'm with you on the non-pc.

    Veritas brings to mind a question, what is the actual doctrinal background of the no-swearing? I realized after I wrote this post that I've never actually thought about WHY I no longer swear, or never questioned it. So is it a not taking the Lord's name in vain thing? A thirteenth article of faith thing? (virtuous and of good report) A cultural rather than doctrinal thing? Or am I missing something obvious?
    posted by Blogger marian at 11/30/2006 05:59:00 PM  

  • I like to make stuff up too. "Fudgebunnies" and "sugarpuppies" are two of my favorites and used the most often. (It drives my younger, inactive and potty-mouthed sister crazy, which is amusingly ironic.)
    posted by Anonymous Proud Daughter of Eve at 11/30/2006 06:01:00 PM  

  • I used to (and still say) "MOTHER!"
    ... got it from my bf in high school and probably didn't realize that it was the beginning of a really nasty phrase until about college. It was funny/stupid... whenever we would say it over at my friends house her mom would come running into the room and then pretend to act all annoyed that we really didn't want her.
    posted by Blogger Jen at 11/30/2006 06:05:00 PM  

  • I say pfoo sometimes, or pfooey. The "p" is silent, but it still seems to give some emphasis. =) I really don't like the way swearing sounds, though, and I feel bad when I use harsh words at all, even non-swear-words. I guess I would rather be mild and calm. "Pfooey" sounds rather bad, doesn't it?
    posted by Anonymous Tatiana at 11/30/2006 06:13:00 PM  

  • Yes, it sounds just awful Tatiana! Ha, too funny!!
    posted by Anonymous msl at 11/30/2006 06:55:00 PM  

  • Hmmmm, I like fudgebunnies, I'm going to have to remember that one. Unfortunately, in most cases it's more a matter of whatever comes out of my mouth in the moment, but maybe I can coax some fudgebunnies out if I think about it enough.
    posted by Blogger marian at 11/30/2006 08:06:00 PM  

  • The curses I use are (mostly) relatively tame -- your standard damn or hell -- but when I heard my 3yo DD let out a string of Damns the other day I decided I needed to cut out even those.

    Yesterday when I stubbed my toe on the bottom of my bed, with both DDs in the room, I tweaked it just a teeny bit and screamed "BAM! Bam, bam, bam, bam, BAM THAT HURT!" LOL.

    With any luck, that one won't get them into trouble at nursery.
    posted by Anonymous Anonymous at 11/30/2006 08:55:00 PM  

  • Ok, see, I don't think damn and hell are swearwords. at all.
    posted by Anonymous Veritas at 11/30/2006 10:40:00 PM  

  • Yipes. I come from a long line of female swearers. My grandma, my mom, my aunt, me. 99% of the time its under my breath, when I drop something on my toe I scream out "MOTHER of MERCY" (I think from Chris Farley...not sure where I got that one) or "shiste" (from my college roomie).
    Don't get me wrong - I am not cruising around cursing all the time, but I am not in the "I have sworn a few times in my life" camp either. It really does blow off steam. Am I the devil?
    I know I don't swear a lot out loud because I think I said sh*& once at work and my boss and the girl that sat across from me were devastated. They thought they were a bad influence on me and felt horrible. Oops.
    Good question Marian - where does the no swearing thing come from?
    posted by Blogger Melissa at 11/30/2006 10:56:00 PM  

  • The downside of made-up swear words is I find it much easier to use them when I haven't been really, truly upset. Then I want the power and shock value of the bad words. I never used to be much of a swearer but when I lived in Japan I worked with a lot of Australians, who were a bad influence on me. (Not that all Australians are like that but these ones were!)

    "Damn" is my husband's least favorite swear word; he's Catholic and the "d" word seriously bothers him. He doesn't think anything or anyone should be sent to hell because you got ticked off, which is the essential idea behind the word.
    posted by Anonymous Proud Daughter of Eve at 12/01/2006 07:18:00 AM  

  • Yay, I am Marian's "Oh Mylanta" friend! It's a good one, I probably use it daily.

    I cleaned up my language many years ago but unfortunately, sometimes there just isn't a good enough substitute for the great swearwords...and I slip. Only once or twice in front of my kids luckily. I say "Crap" often enough though that my son has now incorrporated that into his 'tantrum' vocabulary, much to my husbands dismay. Hmmm...not good. It's a daily challenge for me to not let my language slip and so far, I'm winning that potty mouth battle!
    posted by Blogger chloe at 12/01/2006 04:27:00 PM  

  • Dogspit.
    posted by Anonymous Sara R at 12/02/2006 08:42:00 PM  

  • I say all the Mo swear words...
    Pissed, hell, AND crap!
    Or "crapfulcrap" from Homestar Runner, which my son picked up yet absolutely CANNOT pronounce, it's cute. And "son of a.." no last word, just son of a. And sometimes *quick look around and whispers* I like to say jackass when I'm driving and people are, well, jackasses.
    I got a bit of a reprimand at church 2 weeks ago for saying crap, so I asked exactly what I said that was so wrong. They said crap, so I asked if they'd prefer I say "poop" or "excrement" instead. No response yet, I'll let you know...
    posted by Anonymous Anonymous at 12/05/2006 09:52:00 PM  

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