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What Your Favorite Swear Word Says About You

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February 17, 2014 by Renee

**Warning**
 
There WILL be profanity in this post. Duh.
 
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Because it’s my birthday today, I’ve decided I can do all of my favorite things. So, let’s talk about one of my top three: Swear words. I like to swear. But then, you all knew that. When I’m writing, though, I have to weigh the real value of each profanity I use, because it is possible to use it too much. This tends to ruin any impact or color added to the character or dialogue. Instead, I focus on what the swear words used say about the character using them. But let’s step back a bit and discuss swearing in general first.    Comedian George Carlin listed the “Seven Words You Can Never Say on Television” in a 1972 monologue. These are kind of like the seven deadly sins, but better because we’re not as likely to go to Hell for indulging. I mean, if there is a Hell. Maybe we all go to the place of rainbow-shitting unicorns no matter what we do. Something to think about, right?
Anyway, Carlin’s seven words are: shit, piss, fuck, cunt (sorry, Mom), cocksucker, motherfucker and tits. 
These words were considered extremely offensive at the time, and in the U.S. they couldn’t be used on television or radio. They continue to be largely taboo on broadcast television, although I’ve heard shit, piss and tits uttered more than a few times in recent years. Just saying. And I am aware that HBO doesn’t count.    Carlin’s list is great, but for this blog post I’m going to modify it a little to include the words used most often today that are still considered offensive. Also, motherfucker, awesome as it is, is a derivative of fuck, and so it cannot be counted as a separate word for the purposes of what I’m doing here. My blog post, my rules, motherfucker. Deal with it.
So, which do I count as the deadliest swear words? Well we have a “Big Six” when it comes to swear words in today’s English language: Ass, bitch, cunt, fuck, dick and shit. It’s been decided (mostly by me) that tits, damn and piss are not swear words. They’re rarely offensive and are used to pepper your vocabulary with a mild dash of flavor when you know you can’t use real swear words.
Now, as I said before, the way you speak and the words you use say a lot about you. Most of our vocabulary is influenced by things we can’t control, like age, region and upbringing. Swear words, though, are usually conscious word choices. They’re taboo, so when we use swear words in social media or our writing, most of us pause to consider them first. Yes, even me. This is why swear words can be used to determine someone’s personality. Not scientifically. That would be silly. This is purely based on my opinions, which in my opinion, are usually pretty accurate. 
Anyway, let’s look at the Big Six and see what your favorites say about you. Remember, we’re talking about the swear words you say most often, not the ones you think. If the word doesn’t cross your lips, it doesn’t count.
Come on over to DeadPixel Publications with me to see what your favorite swear word says about you.
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Renee

Renee

I like to write stuff. Sometimes it's funny. I've published some novels and short fiction. I also battle an addiction to cake and potato chips, and I sometimes have inappropriate fantasies involving Kevin Spacey.

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