Remember when you heard sophisticated grown-ups use curse words as casually as breathing, and you thought, “I want to be just like them when I grow up. I’m going to curse and curse and no one will be able to stop me.” When you’re a child, there’s something fascinating about using dirty words, and I don’t think the fascination fades, at least for some. Even those of you who feign shock at the sound of a dirty word secretly wish you could speak them with abandon. Go ahead; I give you permission.
When I was about 10 years old, my two brothers and I decided it was time to start cursing. At school, at home, while playing with friends. Anywhere and everywhere we felt like it, except when adults were present. We were smart enough to hide it from the unsuspecting adults.
Here’s the slightly exaggerated re-enactment of the conversation that served as a gateway to cursing:
Stacy (12 years old): “I started cursing. I do it all the time.”
Me: “You’re gonna get in trouble?”
Stacy: “Not if I don’t get caught.”
Me: “Okay. I’m going to curse too.”
Josh (eight years old): “I curse too! I’ve been doing it longer than you guys.”
Me: “No you haven’t. You lie.”
Stacy: “I say every bad word in the world.”
Me: “Well, so do I.”
Josh: “I say a gazillion billion bad words a day.”
Well, you get the idea. It became a competition to see who cursed the most and who knew the most bad words, but oddly enough, not one of us cursed throughout the conversation. I think we were each too scared to be the first. That would eventually change, but for a brief time we remained unsophisticated children.
Even now, I’m not a good curser. I have a few go-to words, but I sort of feel like I’m still that child testing the waters to see if cursing fits me or not. It’s a steady source of entertainment to my friends to see if they can get me to say the F-word, which I’ve seldom uttered in my life. Someday they might hear it, but it’s likely to be in the throes of anger, which they won’t find so amusing. Until then, I live vicariously through other’s use of the F-word. I’ll keep honing my skills. And, for those of you who love to curse, remember to do it in all the places deemed inappropriate by society: work, church, school, the dinner table, the checkout line at the store, a funeral, etc.
Disclaimer: No curses were used in the making of this blog post. I do not condone the use of profanity. I will not be held responsible for embarrassing situations that might arise from their use. Curse responsibly and at your own risk.
If you are so inclined, check out the first installment of Childish Memories: Blanket Fortresses are Impenetrable!.
Stay tuned for the third in the series: Childish Memories: My Dolls Deserved to Die!