Years Ago

I swear this might sound a bit ranty but …

Cussing in print media has become a habitual and dumpy old hat, and it’s time to change the fashion.

Thank you to my blogger friend Jenny, for addressing this.

And thank you to all writers who refuse the lazy, cliché option.

If you consider yourself a writer, use words, please, not crass interjections.


At the risk of being showered by the particular bugbear of this post, do you know one of the things that really riles me? Profanities. Written ones. I don’t see the point: they really irk me. There I am, reading an interesting article when suddenly, out of nowhere and for no tangible reason, the writer shoves in a quick Anglo-Saxon style curse. What for? Effect? To display some sort of weird street cred? Sorry but that’s where I either lose faith in the writer’s point of view or stop reading altogether.

As when locked into a heated discussion it is pretty indicative as to who will eventually come out on top when one side resorts to using swear words loudly – the first sign of this in my adversary and I know I’m on to a winner. Not, you must understand that I partake in arguing often. Or loudly.


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16 thoughts on “I swear this might sound a bit ranty but …”

  1. I hear you! Oopsie though, very rarely I resort to those kinds of words went I’m ranting as I did in a recent post… (hangs her head in shame and shuffles out of the room…)

  2. Oops. I didn’t know whether to post on Jenny’s blog, or yours. So I’ll respond on both.
    I don’t have a problem when a profanity is spoken (or yelled, or cursed under the breath) when it’s a response given to a circumstance without time to plan how to respond (i.e., hitting your elbow or seeing an enemy drive by with his one-finger salute out the window at you). But when we write, supposedly we have time to think…to reread…to edit; it’s not the place for spontaneous verbal explosions.
    Excellent post; thanks to you and Jenny.

    1. Exactly — your words bear repeating… “when we write, supposedly we have time to think…to reread…to edit; it’s not the place for spontaneous verbal explosions.”

      I understand spontaneous verbal explosions. But I think “writing” ought to be something other, even more, than a record of what we “say.”. Otherwise, what’s the point of writing. Right? Why not just make a tape recording of everything, an oral history?

      Writing has to be something more than a transcription, or it’s not worth the effort.

  3. Jenny made some excellent points. I have avoided reposting a meme or article when it has profanity because that’s not how I want my grandchildren or others to remember me. In comments about one movie, it was noted how many times a certain jarring word was used in the film. As you say … for effect? To me, a movie or comedian/ne uses these words for shock value. For me, they’ve lost ground when they do. I’ve heard or read that “blue” language so often that it’s lost its shock value. Move on. Be more creative.

    But, there are times when I think the author or movie can be forgiven if profanity is used sparingly and in keeping with the way the character acts. (ex. Steve Martin to the car rental agent in “Trains, Planes and Automobiles.” It would be unrealistic to expect Steve Martin, who’s had one major kerfuffle after another to respond with an: “Oh my goodness … ” )

    1. I agree with you Judy — there are times in dramatic dialogue when the character would come be unbelievable if he/she didn’t use profanity.

      And I think there are quite a few of us who wish for books and movies that are intelligent and entertaining, without gratuitous or lazy profanity. Maybe if we all get really vocal about it, (and let publishers and film makers know that we don’t “buy” what they’re selling) they’ll deliver more of what we’d prefer.

  4. I’m with you! and you are not being ranty (though I must confess, when I first read the title of your post I thought it said randy! whoops!) (Lottie clearly needs specs) I’ve noticed lots of people f’ing and blinding on their posts and even though I cuss and swear like a trooper at times, I don’t enjoy, indeed I switch right off when I read posts where every other word is a profanity. Not only is it lazy, it makes for very dull reading.

    1. Dull is right! I also think it’s inconsiderate. But then, dull people often are inconsiderate. It takes an effort to be charmingly conversant. People used to go to finishing school to learn how.

      I’m thinking of founding a finishing school for the 21st Century. It would have to involve learning to converse in multiple languages and traveling to other countries. Wouldn’t that be cool?

  5. I read this post originally on Jenny’s blog. She can make any topic entertaining!

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