Dismantling an f-bomb

Cool, is it not?

Cool, is it not?

I write because I love it.  And because I can.  And I don’t imply I’m good at it, it is merely a statement of fact.  I have my three P’s and one S sorted.

I have a Pen (keyboard), Paper (computer screen), Place (cosy office @ work) and a Story.  Or twenty thousand of them.

All MY stories.  Stories I want my kids to read.  My reflections on life, filtered through a sieve of perceptions, creativity, vocabulary and humour.  Stories that enable my to fly to exotic destinations in my mind, some I never even knew existed, gems hidden away in my grey matter. Writing allows me to soar above the realities and frustrations of every day life, makes me float in the erratic breezes that blows in my mind…shit you see, there I go, losing it again.  My grip on reality.  I’m returning to earth…Or rather to the point.

I write with a very specific audience in mind.  I call them Son and Princess, for they’re mine and I can call them what I want to.  I’m pegging my tales, hiding captured pieces of myself, showing them subtle glimpses of the inner workings of the man they call Dad.

In some of my fleeting adventures, I over indulge in the pleasures of my imagination and in those moments I lose track of my target audience.  It is then that I end up using a few f-bombs, here and there.  Not too many, I think, but definitely a few. Why?  Because they are just so damn versatile.

Trouble is, that my prospective target reader is slowly migrating into an actual one.  *Insert high five*  He is even telling his friends about it.  And they also want to read the stuff I’m putting on screen.  *Insert another high five, followed by little jiggy dance*

Now with Son reading my stories, it provides him with the credibility and reason to formulate an opinion, for I raised him to have one.  An opinion. *Insert f-bomb*

He said: “Dad, you swear to much in your posts.”

Ross Geller does not care gif

WTF? (I’m trying to hide them now.)

He noticed.  And I’m left with a whole lot of mud on my face, covering the scarlet colour of my embarrassment.  I’m always on his case when he uses strong words of emotion aka curse words.  Let’s just say it’s a case of “Do what I say and not what I do.”  Which as an argument doesn’t sit well with a teenager.

But an f-bomb is to a writer what water is to a scientist.  It dissolves anything.  No one will disagree with the effectiveness of a well placed landmine. My limited vocabulary are sometimes insufficient in specific scenario’s.  And when we’re fighting the war with words, we need all the help we can get.

An f-bomb can:

  • Indicate surprise.  Like when you’re wife tells you she’s pregnant and the youngest sibling is sixteen. (No, relax.)
  • Indicate frustration.  Like when the idiot driving in front of you in the fast line is travelling at 10 km below the speed limit.
  • Indicate aggression.  Like when someone steals your parking space after you’ve been circling the car park for 20 minutes.
  • Indicate helplessness.  Like being stuck in the dark with a flat tyre and you forgot the jack at home.
  • Indicate fear. Like when you’re out with the mates and forgot to check the time and you’re 3 hours late.

It’s a verb, adjective, noun, adverb, question, exclamation and insult all in one.

It can also indicate happiness.  And excitement.  And shock.  And amazement.  And appreciation.  Like when you’re freshly pressed.  And your blog increases with a hundred followers overnight!  And you get a ridiculous 255 likes and a 210 comments for one post!!!

(Or so I’ve heard.)

I believe that even the greatest writers amongst us end up in a situation where they run out of words, and the only way to convey a very specific emotion is by using the good ole f-bomb.

But writers needs to be challenged.  We need to leave old habits behind and adopt better ones.  And I’m up for the challenge.  I’m going to dismantle my arsenal of f-bombs.  I’m going to discontinue the use of profanity on this blog, in the same way North Korea has discontinued the production of nuclear missiles.

It means I will have to gear up my writing, moving into foreign terrain, using full on four-wheel-drive mode, finding more innovative ways of describing moments where “fuck” was the obvious choice.

Or maybe I’ll just use them more cautiously, hiding them like Easter eggs.  For it might not be possible to dismantle an f-bomb.

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19 thoughts on “Dismantling an f-bomb

  1. I think the key here is “in the same way North Korea has discontinued the production of nuclear missiles.” Though there really should be quotes around the “discontinued”.

    I’ve gone to Foogoos in my life as much as possible or Fubar works well too. Even though it’s an acronym, you aren’t ACTUALLY saying the word.

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  2. Aargh. Should I read this post on the day that I let loose a string of expletives in the car in full earshot of 4 kids all under 12 because I narrowly missed running over an effing a@##$@# who crossed my effing path without an effing signal when I was going at 40kmph.
    Next time I chide mine for using the s word, I am going to look like an @#%. Sorry, ass can be used as a synonym for donkey, no?

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  3. The word exists for a reason, and is used for a reason. It’s power is destroyed by those who use the word like it doesn’t matter… It also shows how enormously powerful, and creative/destructive, all words can be. Great posting, thanks!

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  4. Haha! OH gosh. I don’t often curse on my blog, but it does happen… Anytime I do it, I get a chiding little tsktsktsk from The Boyfran. I know it’s an easy way out but like you said– it just conveys so much!

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  5. I was always taught that swear words were used by people with a lack of good vocabulary. As a (blog)writer I take that as an insult. But boy those swear words are expressive like you said and say just what you want them to say!!

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