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Posted on | October 11, 2007 | No Comments

How often do you say that? Moreover, how often do you mean that but substitute some other word for the explicative?

For all of you who can’t bring yourselves to say it, I will. Shit happens. Shit more than happens, we personify feces with characteristics that allow us to proclaim that shit does not only happen, shit delights in happening. Why then, is shit still a dirty word (beyond its literal meaning) ?

A rather interesting blogger who delights in the appropriate use of profanity has discussed this topic. The post was an interesting read but left me with a few lingering (and un-entertained) thoughts.

Eric, the Ph.D (and blogger) is correct. Media realizes the value of shock and endeavors to milk this value for every penny that it will yield. I’m wondering, what happens when words alone no longer produce this ‘shock’ phenomenon?

If I was sitting in a class room and had a pen explode in my pocket, screaming “Oh, SHIT” would surely shock my classmates. The fact that I said “shit” is incidental, where I said “shit” solicits this very curious phenomenon.

A few years from now, simply saying “Shit!” in certain places (i.e. on public access television) might not cause jaws to drop. What then? Would I have to stab myself in the thigh with a bleeding pen and fall on my knees genuflecting to solicit such a response? Many people crave, if not feed on ‘shock’ responses. Oh, dear.

I think, perhaps, I’ll refrain from permitting many words from my daughter’s vocabulary. I’m not at all concerned that she says them, I simply hope that her aversion to restrictions manifests verbally, as opposed to the unknown :)


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