It’s weird when you think of it. Calling someone a ‘dick’ should be a great compliment. Why is it that when we want to insult a bloke we call him a name that refers to what should be one of the favourite parts of our bodies. What buried self-hatred must there be for us to feel that it is something bad?
And using that lovely Anglo Saxon word for having sex as a way to express domination over another person or doing harm to them, represents a disturbingly distorted view of sexuality; equating sex and violence is not something most of us are comfortable in any kind of conscious way. ‘Go and f*ck yourself!’ should be a recommendation we give to a buddy when he looks like he needs cheering up with some restful self-gratification; and “I was completely f*cked’ a kind of bragging we might share with friends — rather than something said to elicit sympathy.
It’s bizarre too that some of the most delightful parts of a woman’s body are still used as the worst insults in our language, as if they were disgusting and shameful. Really, anyone ought to feel proud to be called an ‘arse’ or a ‘tit’ – or even more so a ‘c*nt’!
When everyone seems to be celebrating the emotional and physical benefits of physical self-love, why is it so shameful to be called a ‘jerk-off’? And as anal eroticism seems to be moving into the mainstream of intimate activities for people of all orientations, how can it make sense any more to put someone down by comparing them to the very part of the body which makes that particular act possible?
Of course every culture has words which are used to express strong feelings, and violating the taboo against using them provides a cathartic release of some kind. In countries with a strong catholic culture for example; swearing is often done using words connected with the church – but’s it’s hard to imagine that shouting ‘Oh Altar’ etc. would do much for most of us.
But while I can see that using sexually explicit words in public provided a powerful release in the more buttoned-up past, when such things were only talked about in secret, in an age when the front covers of mainstream magazines promise advice about how to improve just about every imaginable aspect of our bedroom activity, and using the F-word is even allowed on the BBC, we’ve surely reached a point where we really need some new verbal release valves.
Out of appreciation and respect for women and for how much I enjoy making love, I’ve decided from now on to refrain from swearing with words that have anything to do with our bodies, or sex.
So I’ve been thinking about what other areas of life could be considered disgusting enough to be effective as an insult or when shouted out in pain.
For starters, instead of the good old English insult of ‘wanker’, from now on I’m going to call anyone that pisses me off…. a ‘banker!
And if someone’s really crossed the line, it’s got to be: “You total… Tr*mp!!”
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