Time for some profanity!

This is officially the moment that the blog has become profane.

I had a conversation via AIM last night that discussed the usage of the f-word. Since we’re often debating language and word usage, I thought this might be of good use for the blog.

As I reread the conversation, I’m shocked at how rude I sound. I have a reason for that. To be honest, I rarely go on AIM these days, and that’s because there are people I know who start incessantly IMing me the second I go on — it’s like they all have me on alert. This friend is one of them. I went to high school with him.

He never speaks to me over the phone, ever, and I never see him, but as soon as I go on AIM, it’s BOOM, BOOM, BOOM! IM after IM after IM. It never stops. He also deliberately says vague things so that I have to ask him questions. It’s incredibly annoying, and it never fails — the minute I sign on, it’s nonstop. Most of the time, I just ignore him, but sometimes I speak to him just to say i have to go. He has multiple (changing) screennames, so I can’t just block him. I’m quelling the problem by staying off AIM. My friends can chat with me on Google Chat.

Anyway, here’s the conversation. I’ve taken out the overt swears, changed the names and removed a few irrelevant lines, but I didn’t edit anything within the lines.

Friend: i am F—–
Kate: why is that?
Friend: cuz i went into the city
Kate: okay
Friend: what’s new katelyn mcculley
Kate: so you’re not going to explain why you are, ahem, F—–?
Friend: i just said it
Friend: i went inboston

Kate: okay, what is SO BAD about going into boston?
Friend: nothing, did i hint at the notion of somethin being bad?
Kate: Friend: i am F—–
Kate: generally, that’s not something meant as positive
Friend: as in intoxicated
Kate: oh, I get it now
Kate: as in F—– UP, you mean, then
Friend: ok ok
Friend: i missed a word
Friend: crucitfy me
Friend: so how u been kate
Friend: it’s been awhile

Not nearly long enough.

Have you ever used f—– to mean intoxicated? I never heard that. To me, to be f—– means to be in serious trouble. To be f—— up means to be intoxicated. During my freshman year of college, I was friends with a guy who constantly blasted the song “Get F—– Up” whenever we started drinking, and usually throughout the night.

I have never heard it used otherwise, but it might be different in other areas of the country and with different age groups. What do you think?

I’d like to hear your views on this.

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9 responses to “Time for some profanity!

  1. I think he was still f—ed at the time of your conversation, because it makes abso-f—ing-lutley no sense why anyone would use that one word to mean intoxicated.

    In all fairness, based on the conversation, it looks as if he simply forgot about the second word, and thought nothing over it, even when you probed him about it. I would give him the benefit of the doubt, and assume he knew the expression is “f—ed up,” and he simply left off the “up” in his excited hurry to relay his epic journey of alcohol and Bostonians.

    If not, that dude is f—ed! Or something.

  2. Oh, of course, I give him the benefit of the doubt.

    I just thought that he got arrested or something equally serious!

  3. Check out the list of synonyms for “drunk” in Roget’s Thesaurus sometime. No profanities, but it’s pretty entertaining nonetheless. Here are just a few: cockeyed, stewed, blind, bombed, boozed, boozy, crocked, high, lit (up), loaded, looped, pickled, pixilated, plastered, potted, sloshed, smashed, soused, stinking, stinko, stoned, tight, zonked.

    I also like “blotto”, “hammered,” and “polluted.”

    Disclaimer: The foregoing is entirely academic since I happen to be a non-drinker myself! ;-)

  4. Aren’t you worried this “friend” is going to see this post and feel bad about the way you describe him?

  5. P.S. Is this the grammar blog or the colloquialism blog?

    We want funny pictures of messed up signs!

  6. Alexa — they’re coming, they’re coming.

    fur — I’m surprised “wasted” isn’t on there! That’s usually my term of choice.

    When I studied abroad in Florence, I wrote a 267-page diary and added a note at the end to future readers that they would probably be laughing at my old-fashioned slang, with words like “wasted” and “hooking up.”

  7. Pixilated – I like that. F-ck, sh-t. What I find interesting about these words is the semantic variety of which they are capable. They can made into verbs, nouns, adverbs; they are extremely malleable. But anyway, “f-cked” for me refers to your state when your bad situation is irreversible.

  8. This side of the pond, “f—ed” tends to mean “in an extremely undesirable situation”, while “f—ed up tends to mean “badly damaged” or “beyond repair”. For example: “Now I’m f—ed. I won’t be able to get that driving job because I f—ed up my driving test.” However, one could say either “That toaster’s f—ed” or “That toaster’s f—ed up”, so it’s not a hard-and-fast rule.

    Does “f—ed up” necessarily mean “intoxicated”, by the way? I always thought SNAFU was an American acronym.

  9. Mark, Richard Lederer has a book called “The Cunning Linguist” and he has a whole chapter on all the different ways f— and sh– are used in language. Overall, I recommend the book to anyone who is amused by grammar and word usage in conjunction with dirty jokes.

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