|Blogging Like I've Never Blogged Before|
Monday, July 28, 2003
I blame my potty mouth on Kevin Staub. I went to grammar school with Kevin and I've known him since kindergarten. We fell out of touch in middle school, as he became a smoker and I did not.
Anyway, one day in fourth grade, Kevin and I left school together. We were walking behind good ol' Harmony School when Kevin said to me, "Mike, I noticed that you don't curse." I like to think that the kids who did curse had a meeting after kickball one day to discuss who they could recruit into cursing.
Kevin Staub: Greetings gentlemen. We've recently noticed that there are some among us who currently don't curse. We've narrowed the list down to a few that we will approach and welcome them into the world of saying things like "ass" and "shit", and in some cases, "shitass". Should that be hyphenated? Billy, can you look into that please?
Anyway, Kevin approached me about my ultra-clean language. He then told me to say "shit." At first I was reluctant. I thought, Why should I start cursing now? I haven't up until this point and there have not been any negative effects from not doing it. Being that I was a pushover, I then quietly said "shit." We were walking very close to some windows to classrooms. God forbid a teacher hear me. But I said it and realized it wasn't so bad. Then Kevin said, "Now say 'fuck'." Whoa. That's the big one, I thought. Do I dare say it? You will find out after this quick break.
Here are some side stories on the word "fuck":
-- The first time I heard it (or at least heard it and recognized it was bad) was when Steven Repsher came into my first grade class, threw his lunch box into his cubby hole and said, "Aw fuck." One of the girls in my class, Karen Nedostup, I believe, gasped and said, "Steven! That's a bad word!" He was obviously unaware of it and probably heard one of his parents use the word. The teacher wasn't in the classroom yet, so he got away with it. I then went home later that day and began writing it on a piece of paper in front of my sister and her friend. I wrote the F and then the U, as my sister and her friend watched in anticipation. I then wrote the C and it was clear where I was going with this. My sister then gasped (lots of gasping on this day), threatened to tell my dad, while her friend said, "Well, he didn't really spell it." Good point, I thought. So I closed the deal and penned the K. My sister ran downstairs with my brand new essay and told my dad. I don't remember if he gave me a talking to or not, but I do remember being nervous. I think he probably just threw it in the fireplace and then beat the shit out of me with his bong.
-- The first time I heard my dad say the word was when Joe Theismann broke his leg. He would say every other curse in the book (the big book of curses of course), but not that one. But seeing that dude's leg snap in half set him off. He let out a big "Oh, fuck!" I then went and watched them show the replay fifteen times, and I thought, Man, dad was right. That definitely deserved an "Oh, fuck!" I forget what age I hit when my dad started to say it in front of me on a regular basis, but he's no longer shy about it.
Anyway, back to me and Kevin Staub.
I think at first I told Kevin I wasn't going to say it (I was such a pussy!). But after some more peer pressure, I said it very quietly. He then told me to say it louder. So I said it a little bit louder. Then he said, "No, yell it. Just go, 'FUCK!'" He then yelled it a few more times consecutively like "FUCK FUCK FUCK!", when our art teacher peeked her head out of window to take a gander at what all the "fuck"ing was about. Then I think we ran.
So that day, I never did yell the word. But rest assured that set me on a path of cursing. The following year I was in my fifth grade class and some kid said something to me, and I said something back which was very clever like, "Fuck you." Rather than being upset, he said, "Mike, you curse a lot now. You never used to." That made me feel pretty good. I never realized kids paid such close attention to the linguistic habits of others.
So I thank you, Kevin Staub, where ever you might be, ya piece of shit.