I like to cuss. Kind of a lot. Unlike my sister Elizabeth, who can put together a perfectly original and striking phrase (effing floo powder anyone?), though, my cussing is mostly just strings of random foul words linked together until I’ve finished expressing my anger/frustration/whatever at the situation. I remember when I was considerably younger, my mom tried to get me to clean up my language by telling me that a certain attractive Secret Service agent called women who cussed “trashmouths.” It didn’t work, not really. I just tried to stop cussing around her.
Joe doesn’t like it when I cuss. He thinks it’s unladylike. Or vulgar or unrefined or something. Not quite sure what. But dang! When people tell me to cuss around them, my instinctive response (whether I utter it or not), is to say that I’ll cuss as much as I damn well want to, thankyouverymuch.
Don’t get me wrong. I do my best not to cuss aloud when it’s not appropriate. And I am definitely cognizant of the fact that there are times when it’s highly inappropriate to cuss. In my mother’s presence, f’rinstance. Or at work, which is funny in a not-funny way because one of the things that makes me most want to cuss is work. When I’m in public and little kids are around. At funerals. At church. Although my sister has a funny story about a man talking in church one day about how he couldn’t stop cussing, and his wife hated it, and he just couldn’t clean up his damn language. She tells it better than I do, since she was there, but it always cracks me up to think about it.
Another thing that makes me want to cuss is when Joe eats a metric fucktonne of chocolate and complains because he gets a migraine headache and he thinks he’s having a heart attack or a stroke. I’d be more sympathetic if vegetables or grilled fish gave him migraines, and I’m not completely unsympathetic that chocolate does it to him. But when I told him the other day the reason he was having migraines is because he had eaten a metric fucktonne of chocolate, he told me to quit cussing. And he said I was right and he would quit eating chocolate. I came home the next day from work to find that he’d plowed his way through the big hollow Santa Claus in that fancy bag of European chocolates he’d gotten at Christmas time. I was going to take the hollow chocolate Lindt or Lindor bear (forget which it was) to work and give it to someone there to eat, but he promised he wouldn’t eat it and told me to leave it where it was because it was cute and he wouldn’t eat it, honest. I got home from work today and all that’s left of that poor chocolate bear is a mess of foil wrapper on the table. So if Joe gets a headache I’ll tell him it’s his own damn fault for eating a metric fucktonne of chocolate, and if he tells me not to cuss I’ll tell him not to drive me to cussing by eating a metric fucktonne of chocolate.
No, I won’t. I’ll get him some Advil and a Coke and tell him to lie down and get some rest, only he won’t because he’ll go plug in his guitar and turn on the amp and drown out the neighbourhood. I don’t get that.