Saturday, October 18, 2014
A Day Without Cursing
A day without cursing? Could I do it?
I wanted to say 'fuck yeah!' but that would have blown it already. And I was determined.
We live in a schizophrenic society. Put on cable television any hour night or day and seldom is heard a non-four letter word unless you're watching a Frozen marathon. But out in the real world, you are wise to use four-letter words in reasonable proportion to other lettered ones lest you be judged an ill mannered lout, sex offender, or even worse, comedian Bob Saget.
My proportions had become anything but proportionate. The 'f' word and 's' words had begun to rule my vocabulary the way Coca-Cola and coffee rule my taste buds. The situation had reached its apotheosis the other day when I endeavored to help a sweet little old day across the street with the words "Need assistance crossing the fucking street, miss?" which did not particularly find favor with her.
Something had to be done to develop a way to put the four letter words in their place --- which was in my mouth --- but in my mouth far less frequently.
And I came up with the solution: Spend one whole day without cursing. If I could do that, I could certainly learn to curse with discretion and judgment all the other days, especially the ones that I wasn't being fired from a job or dumped from a relationship.
The night before the day selected I read six stories by Charles Bukowski to get the nasty words out of my system, then watched the first chapter of Anne of Green Gables all the way through, making sure to cry at every appropriate moment.
I was ready.
Showering and shaving the next morning were uneventful. Then on my way to locating my shoes to put them on, I smashed my foot against a bureau. It hurt.
"You mother ...." I began.
"You mother lode of misery!" I yowled.
Challenge No. 1 met and overcome. Points for creativity too.
Settling behind the wheel of my car, I noticed that I needed gas to get to my destination. I was annoying, because as usual I was late.
"Oh, shi..." I started.
And "Oh, shine on, shine on havest moon!" I finished.
So far, so good. But the mother lode of all challenges was yet to face me.
Later in the day I was involved in a small fender bender.
"You asshole! You fucking asshole!" the other driver bellowed.
"Now let's not be hasty or rude," I countered.
"Asshole! Fucking asshole!" he replied.
I could take no more!
"You, sir," I fired back, "are a fink."
" A fink? I'm a fink?"
"You are! A dirty rotten fink."
And he stopped in his tracks. "Oh, what the heck, buddy, it's just a scratch anyway."
Challenge No. 3 and Victory! Day virtually complete, I returned home and the next day returned to cursing. But maybe from now on I do have a bit of control over the words that issue forth from my lips. Maybe I can take the high road every once in a while.