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Author Topic:   How should one interpret foul language?
Tony650
Member (Idle past 2170 days)
Posts: 450
From: Australia
Joined: 01-30-2004


Message 46 of 87 (403133)
05-31-2007 9:38 PM
Reply to: Message 17 by jar
05-31-2007 8:01 PM


Re: Depends on Context.
jar writes:

I think one of the best posts I have ever made at EvC contained but a couple words, "Shit happens".

It's funny you should say that. Possibly my all time favourite post of yours was one that contained no words at all. None. Nada. Zero. Zip. Zilch. Well, that isn't counting the quoted portion you were replying to, of course, which was the question of why heat on the Earth would not be lost to space. The entirety of your answer was a single image.

I actually managed to track down the post in question. Unfortunately the image doesn't appear to display any more (at least for me), so in case you don't recall, it was a picture of a thermos flask.:laugh:

Yes, yes... I know. I'm amused by simple things.:P


Ferret brain activity increased just 20 percent when looking at Keanu Reeves compared to looking at darkness, the study found.
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jar
Member
Posts: 30941
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004


Message 47 of 87 (403134)
05-31-2007 9:50 PM
Reply to: Message 46 by Tony650
05-31-2007 9:38 PM


Re: Depends on Context.
Thanks.

As Mark Twain said, "I will never use the word metropolis when I get paid the same for city."


Aslan is not a Tame Lion
This message is a reply to:
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Tony650
Member (Idle past 2170 days)
Posts: 450
From: Australia
Joined: 01-30-2004


Message 48 of 87 (403138)
05-31-2007 10:19 PM
Reply to: Message 47 by jar
05-31-2007 9:50 PM


Re: Depends on Context.
No problem. In fact I remember being sorely tempted, at the time, to nominate it for a POTM. But I figured that a prerequisite for a fitting POTM was probably at least some body of text, despite that being the very thing that I liked about it: No words, yet a response that made the point loud and clear... and in an amusing way. Elegance... humour... what more could you want? Or maybe I'm just easily impressed, on top of being easily amused.:P


Ferret brain activity increased just 20 percent when looking at Keanu Reeves compared to looking at darkness, the study found.
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anastasia
Member (Idle past 4090 days)
Posts: 1857
From: Bucks County, PA
Joined: 11-05-2006


Message 49 of 87 (403139)
05-31-2007 10:31 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by Woodsy
05-31-2007 3:16 PM


Woodsy, I am Catholic, haha, but I hate curse words in the way they are often used.

I don't enjoy cursing in the place of good literary skills, as is found on many other sites.

I don't like cursing around my children, because as long as certain words are generally tabooed, and certain people stereo-typed for using them, I don't want to be the mother of the child initiating the whole class and getting the phone call.

I have an aversion to curse words that are said in anger and intended to hurt or augment an argument to a dirtier game than I will play.

I do not like to be around people who don't know how or when to clean up their speech.

I curse on occasion, if I think it will be well-received.

I don't curse when I slam the door on my foot, because I am not used to cursing so it is not a knee-jerk reaction to pain.

There are a few people who can use a well placed swear word to punctuate a conversation and sound more savvy than the rest. My uncle Thomas comes to mind, very funny guy. Humour is something I respect, although I am not funny. Humour is often a gift of the intelligent, and the manipulation of the entire range of words is a great attrubute to have.

If you are not one of these people, you should need a permit to carry curses. Hardly anyone knows how to handle them. They either have tons of ammo and no target, or a deadly aim.


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Larni
Member
Posts: 3976
From: Liverpool
Joined: 09-16-2005


Message 50 of 87 (403165)
06-01-2007 5:16 AM
Reply to: Message 1 by Woodsy
05-31-2007 3:16 PM


Swearing is a great way to let people know what kind of person you are.

I always try to get in a few quiet 'fucks' into the conversation to get a guage of the type of person I'm talking to (using less harsh words as the situation dictates).

I also laugh inside when ever I say 'cheers' (by way of 'thank you') but replace 'cheers' with 'jizz' (it sounds almost exactly the same with my accent). Hilarious!

Some times the right (wrong?) swear word in a conversation can be equally hilarious. If someone was to pull me up on swearing in normal social conversation I could conclude that they don't find the same kind of things funny as I do.

My friends and I often make up bizarre novel swear words and text each other just to see who can create funniest words; great fun.

Swearing for fun is ace: using swear words for evil is as bad as using any words for evil.


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Woodsy
Member (Idle past 1511 days)
Posts: 301
From: Burlington, Canada
Joined: 08-30-2006


Message 51 of 87 (403170)
06-01-2007 7:50 AM
Reply to: Message 49 by anastasia
05-31-2007 10:31 PM


There are a few people who can use a well placed swear word to punctuate a conversation and sound more savvy than the rest.

Quite right. It's the mindless use I find tiresome.

It's rather like vibrato in singing. Done occasionally, with artistry, it can enhance the music. Done continuously, it can obscure the music.

Sometimes, though, vulgarity is more a matter of laziness in language (and in thinking?). In LineagAG's example of the hypothetical professor who says "Your thesis is a bunch of shit.", only the prof's disapproval is communicated. If he had bothered to make actual criticisms, something useful would have been communicated, and the prof would not have lowered his own dignity.

Does one encounter the phrase "infra dig." anymore? It used to be quite common but I've not seen it recently. It's short for "infra dignitas" and refers to something that would lower one's dignity, or entitlement to respect, if one did it.

What actions might be infra dig is a matter of social custom, or manners. I was once asked why one should bother with manners. My reply was that they make it possible to stand having other people around. I haven't seen any studies, but my impression is that societies with careful manners are also those with high population densities (eg Japan). I wonder if there is indeed a good correlation there.

[aside] I once mentioned this idea (preserving one's dignity) to one of the boys in our Scout troop. He was surprised anyone thought he was entitled to any, since he was still young. [/aside]

I merely prefer elegant writing, that's all. If someone else doesn't, it isn't that important.


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New Cat's Eye
Inactive Member


Message 52 of 87 (403188)
06-01-2007 9:54 AM
Reply to: Message 51 by Woodsy
06-01-2007 7:50 AM


I merely prefer elegant writing, that's all. If someone else doesn't, it isn't that important.

But still important enough for an off-topic snide comment?


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ringo
Member
Posts: 16460
From: frozen wasteland
Joined: 03-23-2005
Member Rating: 2.6


Message 53 of 87 (403235)
06-01-2007 1:00 PM
Reply to: Message 51 by Woodsy
06-01-2007 7:50 AM


Woodsy writes:

I haven't seen any studies, but my impression is that societies with careful manners are also those with high population densities (eg Japan).

New York City comes to mind. ;)

I merely prefer elegant writing, that's all. If someone else doesn't, it isn't that important.

I prefer diversity.


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Hyroglyphx
Member
Posts: 5640
From: Austin, TX
Joined: 05-03-2006


Message 54 of 87 (403240)
06-01-2007 1:39 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by Woodsy
05-31-2007 3:16 PM


Interesting topic
I find I have an aversion to foul language. It is mainly esthetic, I suppose, but my reaction is to consider the speaker a jerk.

I've found that the usage of foul language is often tied in to the company I keep. For instance, I cursed like a sailor when I was a Sailor. After awhile, that kind of coarse language grated on my nerves. Sure, I still blurt out foul language here and there...

Mostly when someone cuts me off in traffic. :mad:

But for the most part, I find myself in agreement with you.

Fortunately, this is not often a problem on this discussion board. It's quite a treat to read here after visiting other boards.

Yes, that's something I like about this forum. I left another forum because the dialogue was filled with asinine conversations and foul language. It got old fast. This forum is a pleasant change of pace.

Is it proper to object when it happens?

By asking if its proper to object to it, do you mean silently object, or to speak up about how it bothers you?

If its the latter, I think its not unreasonable request to ask people not to speak that way around you. But they may look at you funny after that.


"I marvel that where the ambitious dreams of myself and of Alexander and of Caesar should have vanished into thin air, a Judean peasant—- Jesus —-should be able to stretch his hands across the centuries, and control the destinies of men and nations." -Napoleon Bonaparte
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DorfMan
Member (Idle past 4219 days)
Posts: 282
From: New York
Joined: 09-08-2005


Message 55 of 87 (403248)
06-01-2007 2:31 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by Woodsy
05-31-2007 3:16 PM


quote:
I find I have an aversion to foul language. It is mainly esthetic, I suppose, but my reaction is to consider the speaker a jerk. I find it particularly irritating when it comes from folk who prate about morality.

A swear word at the appropriate time is far less expensive than the cheapest shrink.

To everything there's a season and a time for every purpose under heaven, said the wise man. In other words, a colorful word at the right time can do much for the psyche. Excessive use is another matter.

Mostly, if you are offended, stay away from such as would offend you and at those times you cannot avoid, don't correct, lest you be the jerk that does not mind his own business. Unless you are the parent of the offender.


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crashfrog
Inactive Member


Message 56 of 87 (403258)
06-01-2007 3:31 PM
Reply to: Message 54 by Hyroglyphx
06-01-2007 1:39 PM


Re: Interesting topic
After awhile, that kind of coarse language grated on my nerves.

You must not be doing it right. Proper profanity is poetry if you use it correctly.

Figures, though, that a sailor would half-ass it. If you want to hear proper cursing, you need to talk to Marines. ;)


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ringo
Member
Posts: 16460
From: frozen wasteland
Joined: 03-23-2005
Member Rating: 2.6


Message 57 of 87 (403264)
06-01-2007 3:42 PM
Reply to: Message 55 by DorfMan
06-01-2007 2:31 PM


DorfMan writes:

A swear word at the appropriate time is far less expensive than the cheapest shrink.

I find that swearing at the computer is far more effective than any help line (including prayer).


Help scientific research in your spare time. No cost. No obligation.
Join the World Community Grid with Team EvC
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ReverendDG
Member (Idle past 2248 days)
Posts: 1119
From: Topeka,kansas
Joined: 06-06-2005


Message 58 of 87 (403312)
06-01-2007 8:27 PM
Reply to: Message 51 by Woodsy
06-01-2007 7:50 AM


Sometimes, though, vulgarity is more a matter of laziness in language (and in thinking?). In LineagAG's example of the hypothetical professor who says "Your thesis is a bunch of shit.", only the prof's disapproval is communicated. If he had bothered to make actual criticisms, something useful would have been communicated, and the prof would not have lowered his own dignity.

well i believe lineagAG was pointing out that the word used is irrelevant if the only message is that the thesis was not any good, the fact is he could have said "this paper lacks meaning" but that wasn't what the prof was wanting to say, saying its shit means its shit in the most clear way

Does one encounter the phrase "infra dig." anymore? It used to be quite common but I've not seen it recently. It's short for "infra dignitas" and refers to something that would lower one's dignity, or entitlement to respect, if one did it.

it depends on if you consider the words people use to harm their dignity or not, or if the message is more important

I haven't seen any studies, but my impression is that societies with careful manners are also those with high population densities (eg Japan). I wonder if there is indeed a good correlation there.

sorry but this is not true, japan is starting to shrink

I merely prefer elegant writing, that's all. If someone else doesn't, it isn't that important.

why would how people write or the word usage of a person matter if they have nothing to say?

word use is only meaningful if everyone agrees it is, if only a few do, its a waste of time to worry about


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anastasia
Member (Idle past 4090 days)
Posts: 1857
From: Bucks County, PA
Joined: 11-05-2006


Message 59 of 87 (403323)
06-01-2007 9:06 PM
Reply to: Message 51 by Woodsy
06-01-2007 7:50 AM


Woodsy writes:

Does one encounter the phrase "infra dig." anymore? It used to be quite common but I've not seen it recently. It's short for "infra dignitas" and refers to something that would lower one's dignity, or entitlement to respect, if one did it.

I haven't encountered the phrase, but my ma was big on dignity. It seems to be a thing of the past. Nowadays it's all about 'my right to do whatever the heck I want'.


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tudwell
Member (Idle past 4116 days)
Posts: 172
From: KCMO
Joined: 08-20-2006


Message 60 of 87 (403327)
06-01-2007 9:11 PM
Reply to: Message 52 by New Cat's Eye
06-01-2007 9:54 AM


I merely prefer elegant writing, that's all. If someone else doesn't, it isn't that important.

But still important enough for an off-topic snide comment?

Pot, meet kettle.

:)


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