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four letter words

September 16, 2011

In keeping with the double standard that is typical in the Din household, my husband is allowed to throw around such choice words as duck f%#$er, but I am not allowed to swear.

I’m not too upset at Ali’s decree, however, because I agree that swearing is a tacky habit – especially for a girl. But sometimes, no matter how hard I try, these little four letter words escape my big mouth.

Like last week, when Maya and I were nearly mowed over by a Toyota Hybrid (note to L.A. Hybrid drivers: being more fuel-efficient than me doesn’t give you license to be a bad driver) as we were crossing the street. Suffice to say that I had to explain “Mama doesn’t always make the best choices when she’s mad. Don’t ever repeat that word. Ever.”

And then of course there was yesterday when the guy who came to deliver my new plants insisted on discussing Maya’s only child status. Yes, the freaking plant guy was giving me a lecture about how only children are no bueno. I kid you not.

“Please,” I begged as he started in on me. “Let’s not talk about it.”

How funny is this? Maya found this book at the library herself.

But in the typical fashion of someone who knows it all, he wouldn’t drop it. And of course a four letter word slipped out. And of course I felt tacky. And of course there was nothing I could do about it.

And of course it’ll happen again.

On the plus side? Unlike my husband my swear words don’t involve animals! And around here that’s something to be proud of.

95 Comments leave one →
  1. September 16, 2011 1:07 am

    When people do no know where to draw the line, there must be a way to put them in their place. Though swear words do not escape me easily , I totally agree about them being ‘appropriate’ in certain situations

    • September 16, 2011 12:59 pm

      Exactly! My hubby doesn’t think there are any appropriate situations for me to swear though…

  2. September 16, 2011 2:24 am

    At least you are aware of when you use the four letter word, not only are you aware you correct the understanding of individuals around you to ‘not to use that word’.

    Some people don’t even realise they have used it until someone politely tells them. That when you mind is in the pan being cooked. I’ve never heard someone using four letter word in collaboration with an animal – however I have heard people use the word in collaboration with relationships. On this note I have a joke to share with you all:

    A man goes into a bank with a gun and demands money. Once he is given the money, he turns to a customer and asks:

    Did you see me rob this bank?

    The man replied:

    Yes sir, I did.

    The robber shot him instantly.

    The robber then turned to a couple standing next to the dead body and asked the man:

    Did you see me rob this bank?

    The man replied:

    No Sir, I did not, but my wife did.

    Moral: When opportunity knocks, make use of it…

    • September 16, 2011 1:00 pm

      Hmm…I fear that Ali would be more than happy to throw me under the bus as this man did!

  3. September 16, 2011 3:06 am

    I never ever swear.

    Except when I was 9 months pregnant and the ice cream guy at the Tour Eiffel was trying to rip me off. My husband slowly inched away as things escalated.

    • September 16, 2011 1:01 pm

      Never mess around with a pregnant lady and her ice cream. The man absolutely deserved whatever he got!

  4. September 16, 2011 4:06 am

    OH well glad you live so far away from me and probably will never meet me .. cause I swear a lot the four letter word , I dont say it in the bad way its jsut become part of norm now .. which i hate .. But then i meet such idiots on road every day that I cant help it .. there is only so much paitience or calmness i can do 🙂

    but phewwww I dont use it in context of animals , thinking about it thats weird …

  5. September 16, 2011 4:52 am

    I kind of want to look at that book if I go the library this weekend…

    One of my biggest pet peeves is people giving parenting advice. I really shouldn’t get so worked up about it since I’m not a parent, but it’s situations like the one above that irk me!

    • September 16, 2011 1:11 pm

      I used to be one of those people who gave parenting advice…even before I had a child. Now? I MMOB.

      • September 17, 2011 4:48 am

        LOL ditto. We thought we would be the best parents before we had kids, passing judgement left, right and centre. We must have been absolute prats and a lot of people thinking just wait and see.

        I guess they got the last laugh.

      • September 17, 2011 1:51 pm

        Oh yes Ellie…they are laughing away at me right now!

  6. September 16, 2011 5:32 am

    I try not to swear but it still ends up slipping out sometimes. It’s usually when I’m cooking. Any friend who is over when I’m making dinner always laughs at that because I really don’t swear any other time.

    • September 16, 2011 1:12 pm

      Cooking and driving are when I swear too. And when I’m around Maya. Unfortunately.

  7. September 16, 2011 5:43 am

    One of my male friends once told me that swearing was tacky and unattractive when it came from a lady.

    And my reaction was: “Shit, I’m fucked.”

  8. September 16, 2011 6:10 am

    I tried not to swear especially when my kids are around but it’s particularly extra hard when I’m driving. I usually use the words “moron” or “stupid” or “idiotic” a lot instead. I know it’s still not good but I’m only human after all ..

    On another note, what is wrong with people? How rude!! It’s really irritating when people, let alone total stranger think they know you better and give unwanted “advice” Urghhhhh..

    • September 16, 2011 1:13 pm

      Yes, Maya freaks out when I use the “S-word.” Poor thing probably doesn’t recognize that the other words are far, far worse.

  9. September 16, 2011 6:13 am

    I have the worst mouth ever. It’s awful. I try so hard to fight it but it’s just a fountain of curse words that just cannot be corked.
    I’ve developed some alternatives though that really help. For example: “fark”. Or “shnikees”

    • September 16, 2011 1:14 pm

      How funny. I employ “freaking” and “frickin'” when I’m trying to be good. But Ali finds these tacky too!

  10. September 16, 2011 6:35 am

    I usually don’t swear because I’m afraid one would slip out during a heated motion argument in front of the judge. But, I will admit, I am muttering explicit words under my breath as I’m leaving the courtroom!

    • September 16, 2011 1:15 pm

      I could never be a lawyer because I fear I’d say something I’d very much regret and get in trouble for. Would swearing qualify as being in contempt?

  11. September 16, 2011 6:45 am

    I typically don’t trot out the four lettered words when I am around other people but you get me in the car alone and my inner sailor reigns.

    I think you need to get that plant guy in the MYOB class asap.

    • September 16, 2011 1:15 pm

      Driving brings out the absolute worst in me as well. This is to be expected however, seeing as I live in Los Angeles!

  12. September 16, 2011 6:54 am

    As hard as I try, sometimes those 4 letter words slip out, especially when I’m stressed out or super angry. Working on it…

    P.S. There are some awesome YouTube videos of kids saying things that sound like curse words! I think my favorite is the “Kick my Ask” video. So funny!

    • September 16, 2011 1:16 pm

      I’m working on it too…not making as much progress as I’d hoped but I’m working on it!

  13. September 16, 2011 7:25 am

    I would have spit a four letter word out at the plant guy as well. Since when is it his business (he needs to be referred to the MYOB post from a few days earlier) anyway? We all let them slip now and again.

    • September 16, 2011 1:23 pm

      I am constantly amazed at others’ obsession with only children? And Mr. Plant Guy was no exception.

  14. September 16, 2011 8:31 am

    Oh Lord. I’ll be honest, I swear like a sailor. When I’m in polite company, I keep it under-wraps, but a good old WTF can go a long way sometimes. I think the context counts just as much as the use, really because in some cases, there just isn’t another word that will suffice.

    And plant guy? Can take a number.

  15. September 16, 2011 8:56 am

    Ameena, I think your encounter with the plant man needs to be filed under your MYOB heading! Gee whiz…I understand the only child thing. It’s just my sister and me and sometimes people would give us a hard time because it was just the 2 of us. My parents were thrilled to have us (can’t imagine why!) because my Mom had been told she couldn’t have children. I think he might have been worthy of whichever 4 letter word you might have chosen!

    • September 16, 2011 1:24 pm

      Really? So even if I had another child people would ask me why I don’t have 3?!?

  16. September 16, 2011 8:58 am

    I try my best not to swear around my kids, but every now and again something slips – sigh, just can’t help it. Duckf’er…now that is funny 😉

    • September 16, 2011 1:25 pm

      It’s inevitable Amy. Our parents did it and our kids will do it to their children. It’s the natural progression of things, right?

  17. September 16, 2011 9:40 am

    you should have given the plant guy a link to your blog and referred him to the MYOB post!

    • September 16, 2011 1:26 pm

      But then I fear he’d have a whole lot more commentary and what if I actually had to deal with his lectures in comment form too?

  18. September 16, 2011 10:02 am

    Um, I’m not an only child but that makes me REALLY mad when people say that it’s bad to be an only child! I think it’s totally relative to each kid, who cares? I don’t even speak to one of my sisters anyway, at least she won’t have sibling conflicts! 😉

    • September 16, 2011 1:26 pm

      I really don’t get the only child obsession either? It is a mystery.

  19. Lisa permalink
    September 16, 2011 10:22 am

    That guy is f%#$ing nuts!

    Who walks in a customer’s home and tries and school them on the proper size of one’s family?

    I would have told him to shove his plants and his thoughts up his f%#$ing a$$.

    Yes, I have a potty mouth. *blushing*

    • September 16, 2011 1:28 pm

      Lisa…I need you around to come up with fabulous responses that I a. can’t come up with quick enough and b. often can’t come up with at all.

  20. Lisa permalink
    September 16, 2011 10:24 am

    Oh, and FWIW, I raised an only child.

    She never had any complaints and is one of the happiest people I know.

    So take that plant man!

    • September 16, 2011 1:28 pm

      Finally. A success story! I’m thrilled there is a well-adjusted only child in the world. Thank you for sharing this.

  21. September 16, 2011 10:50 am

    My parents always used to tell me that swearing is a tacky, un-classy thing to do- especially my dad. My mother is guilty of road-rage swearing, but I’ve never in my life heard either of my parents say the f-word, in fact, I’ve never heard my father swear AT ALL, not even a ‘damn it,” he’s a robot, I swear.
    But hey, have you heard of that study they did where they found that swearing is a constructive way to relieve anger/stress and that it actually is a good way to vent anger?

    • September 16, 2011 1:29 pm

      I think I’ve heard my dad say damn but never anything worse. Really, our fathers are pretty impressive.

  22. September 16, 2011 10:54 am

    I think working around kids has definitely helped me in controlling my swearing even when I’m not around them (not that I did it a lot anyways). I find the only place now that it really slips is during soccer games.

    That guy should mind his own business though.

    • September 16, 2011 1:30 pm

      I suppose that being around Maya has helped me with my swearing too…I’m going to stay away from the soccer games though. Noted.

  23. September 16, 2011 1:20 pm

    you’re entitled to swear from time to time. we all do it.

    my husband needs to clean his mouth out – last week we met a new couple and there were f-bombs exploding everywhere. the filter needs to be on. 😉

    • September 16, 2011 8:03 pm

      They have no filter. Ever. My husband just whacked me across the head with a take-out menu because he’s apparently 5-years-old. Go figure.

  24. Med permalink
    September 16, 2011 2:32 pm

    Love this post! I used to have no issues with swearing when I was younger just because I resented it when people said it was “unlady like” or a bad habit for girls, but now as much as I agree that it’s tacky it constantly slips out. As soon as i hear the words coming out of my mouth i cringe inside, but within minutes i hear myself doin it again. The only time it never happens is when I’m teaching, then I can magically self-censor. Even though sometimes you look at a student and really want to say “what the **** are you thinking?!” Anyway, trying to be better about this too 🙂

    • September 16, 2011 8:09 pm

      I manage to self-sensor when I’m in a business environment or with someone conservative like my dad but it’s funny how it slips out otherwise? I could never be a teacher though, I’m sure things would come out of my mouth that would shock my students.

  25. September 16, 2011 3:03 pm

    Oh lord, Im afraid to tell you how much I swear. It gets worse the more stressed out, or tired I am. I messed up some stuff this morning at work, and the string of profanity that came out of my mouth was insane. Its not ALL swear words though. I probaby said “balls” five or six times too. Good thing I’ve never pretended to be a lady. 🙂

    • September 16, 2011 8:10 pm

      Do other people hear you? Your co-workers and boss must be really mellow!!

  26. September 16, 2011 3:09 pm

    I don’t do this often and only in appropriate company (usually when no one is around) but I find it liberating to scream the f word as loudly as I can as many times as I can. Its cathardic and exhausting and makes it so I don’t use the word in daily life. Tacky, maybe. But theraputic.

    • September 16, 2011 8:16 pm

      I just read this to Ali and we laughed so hard! This is so unlike you Deena! I love it.

  27. September 16, 2011 3:24 pm

    the plant guy is lecturing you about having one child? Seriously.
    Did you tell him to Fuck off?


    • September 16, 2011 8:17 pm

      I really wanted to but no I didn’t! I can say so many things to people but the F-word just seems SO wrong. So appropriate on many occasions but SO wrong. 🙂

  28. September 16, 2011 3:53 pm

    Why do people feel the need to make rude and inappropriate comments? This makes me insane. I just blogged about this actually. I was getting heated!

    I have a potty mouth in real life. It’s bad.

    • September 16, 2011 8:18 pm

      I’ve met you and you are so prim and proper I would have never guessed Amanda!

  29. September 16, 2011 5:34 pm

    When I land back in the U.S. I start swearing like a sailor! I simply say to those around me, “I am sorry, but I just have to get it out. I haven’t sworn in X months.” Sometimes it just feels so good to use an expletive. Even if it’s only about how f-ing good dinner is. 🙂

    As for the plant delivery man. He can just shut the f up!

    • September 16, 2011 8:19 pm

      Do they not swear in Spain? Because I don’t hear it much in the rest of Europe – London aside of course. But I haven’t been to Spain so I wouldn’t know…

      • September 20, 2011 4:09 pm

        They do swear. David will say something while driving, and I will ask “what did you just say.” His response, “you don’t want to know.” Oh yes I do!

        So, yes they swear, I just don’t know how. Probably best.

  30. September 16, 2011 7:31 pm

    My husband is terrible for swearing around the kids, but I’m definitely not guilt-free in that department, either. Frankly, it’s a miracle that our kids don’t sound like truckers some days! Aside from when we’re around kids, though, I think I actually curse more than my husband does.

    • September 16, 2011 8:19 pm

      I’m usually pretty good around Maya. Except in the car sometimes and then of course when the LA Hybrid drivers try to kill us.

  31. September 16, 2011 8:39 pm

    I agree, swearing is so tacky. I never swear……… except – when I really hurt myself a swear word just flies out of my mouth, I have no idea where it came from. Maybe it helps ease the pain, who knows?

    • September 18, 2011 7:42 pm

      I think it does help ease the pain. I really do!

  32. September 17, 2011 5:54 am

    I use four-letter words a little more than necessary. Now that we have a little one running around the house the hubby and I are making a more concerted effort to tone it down. It is still a work in progress.
    I have never heard “duck-f%^&*r” in passing ever! Probably a good thing.

    • September 18, 2011 7:43 pm

      Definitely a good thing Sam! It’s not the most attractive swear word…

  33. September 17, 2011 10:37 am

    I know swearing makes me sound ignorant and tacky, but sometimes swears help me emphasize a point.
    eg. “Pick up your s**t right now!” “I don’t give a f**k!” “B!**h gotta d!*k”
    That doesn’t make me classy, but it sure does feel good.

    • September 18, 2011 7:44 pm

      I can relate to that first one more than you know. And yes, it sure does feel good to say.

  34. September 17, 2011 12:51 pm

    I’ve never gotten into swearing! Hahahah it’s actually something I wrote on my “About me” page. I don’t even know why, but I don’t think it’s necessary? But I could really care less if someone swears… some situations it can be comic relief!

    • September 18, 2011 7:45 pm

      You are smarter and classier than me my friend. I need to take a lesson…

  35. September 18, 2011 9:56 am

    I love the well placed swear words…never at work, though, and usually when I am supporting a girlfriend about insensitive family member or crude colleague or road-raged driver:)

  36. September 18, 2011 10:31 am

    I don’t know “Shit” is consider swearing. I say this a lot when I forget something or drop something which happens a lot as I grow older. Then when rude drivers just cut in front of me or tailgate me, I call them “Dig-heads”. Is this swearing too? If it is, I am sorry, I don’t think I can stop swearing, I just can help being tacky. LOL!

    • September 18, 2011 7:46 pm

      I’ve never heard of “Dig-heads” but it does sound very similar to another word I use when driving…too funny.

  37. September 18, 2011 11:44 am

    My dad tells me that my mom was a total potty mouth when they met but she calmed it a lot when she had us. Which makes it so we laugh every time she swears now.

    I have a terrible mouth around the house. I don’t swear when I am anywhere else, but with friends, sitting around, I punctuate with the f-word. It’s so unladylike.

    But frankly, the fact that you didn’t belt the douchebag who tells you what to do with your kid shows remarkable restraint. “Sorry, Maya, Mommy had to break that dude’s teeth b/c he’s a meddlesome ahole and deserves to be struck by a thousand hybrids.”

    • September 18, 2011 7:48 pm

      The good thing is that I hardly, if ever, use the F-word. My transgressions are a bit more innocent. Just a bit!

  38. September 18, 2011 2:30 pm

    The other day my son said “There is a bunch of shit in that car”….couldn’t figure out where the fuck he heard that from. Nope.

    I’m a work in progress.

  39. September 18, 2011 7:49 pm

    Oh my God, I am laughing so hard right now – you have no idea. Love the honesty!

  40. September 18, 2011 8:01 pm

    I have the worst potty mouth! I have been trying to stop cussing for a very long time. I want to be able to say fudgesticks instead of that other F word…but no…. I was doing good but then started watching Deadwood on Netflix and now all those stupid naughty words are front and center in my brain again. Drats.

  41. September 18, 2011 9:44 pm

    I swore at my STUDENTS last week. It was in español (of course!) and I then quickly prayed under my breath (to the Virgin, also of course!) that no one understood what I said. It’s not a super common swear word, unless you are in Spain, where everyone swears. Mind you, I’d be swearing too in that economy.
    I would say – good for you if you are ‘working on it’. That is more than I can say!

  42. September 19, 2011 2:37 am

    I am the same way. I almost never swear, and when I do I feel kind of embarrassed afterwards. I agree, swearing is cheap, but i guess it comes out when we don’t know how to express ourselves. I hate when people use the F word as an adjective in every sentence… its gross.
    *kisses* HH

  43. September 19, 2011 4:01 am

    i agree, i think its unlady like and rude. BUT, in the midst of fear or anger, I’ve thrown things and cussed like a mad women. I blame hormones.
    Tell the plant guy he needs to focus on making the plants grow, not his ego.

  44. September 19, 2011 9:35 am

    I have to disagree, I love the f-bomb, it’s so useful. I have confidence in the fact that I have class and a nice vocabulary and feel there’s nothing wrong with 4-letter words. I do feel badly when they fly out around my children. Taxi drivers often cause this to happen. And because I am a total hypocrite, I will call others out for using foul language around my children.

  45. caloricandcrazy permalink
    September 19, 2011 11:37 am

    Great post! I think that cursing in general is rude and tacky especially, but I have had times when I wanted to call a certain person a [insert word that rhymes with witch]. In the end, I would bite my tounge and tell myself that it is not worth my energy or present frustration.

  46. September 19, 2011 12:23 pm

    Dare I say it’s been a looooooonnnggg time since I last cursed using the four letter word? Some does sugar cleanse, I did “foul mouth” cleanse a long time ago apparently.

  47. September 19, 2011 6:05 pm

    I didn’t used to swear before I had kids. Since around the time Deaglan turned three and I had a second kid, I can’t stop myself. Shaune and I discuss it all the time, how we need to clean up our acts. Just the other day Deaglan said frickin’ in a sentence. Even though I was pleasantly surprised it wasn’t worst, I told him that he shouldn’t talk like that. He asked me why I said it? I told him (and I really thought I’d never come to this) that Mommies are allowed to say some things because they are mommies but it didn’t mean he could.

  48. September 19, 2011 10:52 pm

    At times these 4 letter words relaxes you. My husband too doesn’t like if I say those and so i improvise a lil .. u know llike freak instead of ..

  49. September 20, 2011 9:13 am

    i never used to swear when i was little, even all through jr high and high school when all the “cool kids” swore. then suddenly after becoming a mom, it’s like i’m discovering new swear words everyday. with all the silly books out there, i’m surprised no one has written a book on a mother’s bible of clean swear words. ha! don’t you just love the irony in the title?

  50. Leslie permalink
    September 21, 2011 4:51 pm

    One of the pleasures of being a BSG nerd is the loving use of “FRAK.” In the show, there’s a ton of “frak you” “frak me” “you’ve got to be frakkin’ kidding me” and, bien sur, “motherfrakker.” I think if we were in England, “shag” would be a no-no, but then what do they call their “shag” carpets???

    I agree that females swearing sounds worse, in general. If judicious used, a female swearing gets everyone attention. Ohoh, we stepped over the line on this one.

    You know I hated being an only child, although my other cousins who are onlies swear by it.

    The book is great btw!

    • September 21, 2011 7:44 pm

      Leslie – am I just so out of it? What does BSG stand for?

  51. September 21, 2011 9:14 pm

    What a cute book! I love kids books.

    I think there are appropriate occasions for swears. I recently read an article that talked about a big study that was done showing that swearing actually improves pain tolerance. So, when you stub your toe, go ahead and curse!

  52. October 13, 2011 5:51 pm

    Thank God I do not have kids, ‘coz the “F” word just keeps coming out of my mouth. Husband doesn’t like it but at times it is out of my control!

    ♡ from ©


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