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BS: Asterisk Euphemism

Fortunato 05 Nov 99 - 10:00 AM
Bert 05 Nov 99 - 10:05 AM
Fortunato 05 Nov 99 - 10:15 AM
Bert 05 Nov 99 - 10:18 AM
Fortunato 05 Nov 99 - 10:30 AM
Bert 05 Nov 99 - 10:48 AM
Shimbo Darktree 05 Nov 99 - 10:56 AM
Rick Fielding 05 Nov 99 - 11:13 AM
Joe Offer 05 Nov 99 - 11:55 AM
MMario 05 Nov 99 - 12:40 PM
MMario 05 Nov 99 - 12:43 PM
Bill D 05 Nov 99 - 06:26 PM
catspaw49 05 Nov 99 - 07:14 PM
Bugsy 05 Nov 99 - 08:55 PM
Rick Fielding 05 Nov 99 - 09:44 PM
Rick Fielding 05 Nov 99 - 09:46 PM
MMario 05 Nov 99 - 10:18 PM
Banjer 05 Nov 99 - 10:40 PM
_gargoyle 05 Nov 99 - 10:55 PM
Banjer 05 Nov 99 - 10:59 PM
Rick Fielding 05 Nov 99 - 11:14 PM
thosp 05 Nov 99 - 11:58 PM
Bill D 06 Nov 99 - 12:30 AM
catspaw49 06 Nov 99 - 12:39 AM
katlaughing 06 Nov 99 - 04:27 AM
Joe Offer 06 Nov 99 - 04:29 AM
McGrath of Harlow 06 Nov 99 - 05:56 AM
Shimbo Darktree 06 Nov 99 - 09:22 AM
Tony Burns 06 Nov 99 - 10:02 AM
Bill D 06 Nov 99 - 10:46 AM
catspaw49 06 Nov 99 - 10:50 AM
Bill D 06 Nov 99 - 10:52 AM
Shimbo Darktree 06 Nov 99 - 10:59 AM
Margo 06 Nov 99 - 11:40 AM
catspaw49 06 Nov 99 - 11:44 AM
Rick Fielding 06 Nov 99 - 01:02 PM
bbelle 06 Nov 99 - 01:07 PM
Charlie Baum 07 Nov 99 - 12:04 AM
Charlie Baum 07 Nov 99 - 12:13 AM
thosp 07 Nov 99 - 01:03 AM
Barbara 07 Nov 99 - 01:44 AM
Penny S. 07 Nov 99 - 07:03 AM
Rick Fielding 07 Nov 99 - 12:23 PM
Barbara 07 Nov 99 - 01:19 PM
bassen 08 Nov 99 - 04:33 AM
Bill D 08 Nov 99 - 09:23 PM
katlaughing 08 Nov 99 - 09:55 PM
catspaw49 08 Nov 99 - 09:59 PM
thosp 08 Nov 99 - 11:07 PM
katlaughing 09 Nov 99 - 12:26 AM
Roger the Sk***ler 09 Nov 99 - 11:04 AM
Davey 09 Nov 99 - 11:11 AM
Bruce O. 09 Nov 99 - 02:39 PM
Easy Rider 10 Nov 99 - 10:39 AM
Roger the skiffler 10 Nov 99 - 10:53 AM
Patrish(inactive) 10 Nov 99 - 11:05 AM
Fortunato 10 Nov 99 - 11:12 AM
Bert 10 Nov 99 - 07:07 PM
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Subject: Asterisk Euphemism
From: Fortunato
Date: 05 Nov 99 - 10:00 AM

Does anyone else think it is a bit silly to use Asterisk Euphemisms such as s**t or f**k. Who amongst us does not understand these and immediately translate? The word is sounded in the reader's head anyway. Why bother? Who do we think we are sparing discomfort?

I enjoyed the thread about the Dave Barry column, but spare me the asterisk euphemisms, please.

Yours, Fortunato


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: Bert
Date: 05 Nov 99 - 10:05 AM

It was pointed out at one time that children also use Mudcat


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: Fortunato
Date: 05 Nov 99 - 10:15 AM

IMHO. Which child who uses the Mudcat doesn't understand what s**t or f**k means. If we are concerned about children's minds, and I as a parent am, then we perhpas should avoid Asterisk Euphemisms that even a second grader readily understands?


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: Bert
Date: 05 Nov 99 - 10:18 AM

My children are grown but others expressed a concern. I don't see it as much of a problem.


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: Fortunato
Date: 05 Nov 99 - 10:30 AM

Bert.

My kids are still in school. Let me tell you they can sniff out false morality like a bloodhound, are on me like white on rice if I'm hypocritical. Here at Mudcat I believe people arre attempting to be 100% sincere and real, otherwise why post?


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: Bert
Date: 05 Nov 99 - 10:48 AM

I guess you have to draw the line somewhere. It may be kind of silly, but it seems to be the way that most Mudcaters are doing it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: Shimbo Darktree
Date: 05 Nov 99 - 10:56 AM

I have worked in remote mining towns and on construction
sites, so I guess I've heard all the words (and used them)
Nevertheless, some people are offended at seeing them in their
naked glory. What we are talking about here is consideration
for others (I don't believe I'm typing this, after my stir
on the Irish Question). I'm guilty of some minor transgressions
recently, and I really should not do it ... it is unnecessary.


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 05 Nov 99 - 11:13 AM

Hi Bert, Fortunato. Occasionally when I first became involved in Mudcat I'd use profanity (usually in a "Holy Cow" kind of way), but I've noticed that I've gradually stopped, or on occasion used the silly **** sort of thing. I think whether misplaced or not, it's because I'm trying not to be offensive to someone who really DOES take that kind of thing seriously. I can be pretty flippant at times, and almost never take personal offence at anything someone else says, but I've come to appreciate that in a community such as this, I can feel more of "a part of it" if I "think before posting". The national character is a part of it as well. Were the Mudcat mostly Canadians, Brits, Aussies etc. I'd probably swear more and not worry about offending folks regarding religion, and dark humour. Religious faith is HUGE in America, even among very liberal folk, and though it's tempting at times to make light of the "jesus marketing industry" (even in folkish music), why do it, if it makes some good people uncomfortable? Same with swearing. As most of you know, occasionally I get seriously heated at times..but if I'm going to step on toes I'd rather do it around an issue that I REALLY care about.
I've NEVER really been part of any community (always preferred to be on the periphery of MANY communities), but I like it here, and I wanna stay awhile. A little bending isn't hard at all. (good discipline practice as well...and that helps when you're a lazy musician, like I am)

Rick


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: Joe Offer
Date: 05 Nov 99 - 11:55 AM

I suppose I'm one of those very liberal religious persons the above esteemed very liberal nonreligious person is talking about (grin).
Generally, I feel uncomfortable with the duplicity of using euphemisms. "Fuck" is not part of my usual vocabulary, and I often will quietly slip away from groups where every other word is "fuck." It doesn't make any difference to me if it's spelled "fock" or "f**k" - the frequent use if the word is a strong hint that I probably won't find that conversation to be intellectually stimulating, so I leave.
On the other hand, if it's appropriate to use a word, I usually use the exact word instead of a euphemism. Can't say I'm proud that my firstborn son wrote a cute little calypso ditty called "The Fuck of Love," but I'm not going to call it "The F-word of Love" when I'm talking about it.
On yet another hand, although I don't usually like euphemisms, I really love the Berryman song, F-WORD (A CHAT WITH YOUR MOTHER).
Coming around full circle, I must say I have a lot of respect for the Jewish practice of referring to the deity as G*d because they consider it a name too sacred to be spoken. That practice should not be confused with speaking in euphemisms.
-Joe Offer, home for the weekend-


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: MMario
Date: 05 Nov 99 - 12:40 PM

and then you have the practical matter that there are content filters that will let sh*t through, but will block a site that has "shitake" on it....., even though one is clearly a euphimism and the other is perfectly innocent.


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: MMario
Date: 05 Nov 99 - 12:43 PM

and the corrallary to the above --- some content filters will AUTOMATICALLY convert ...so I get to read recipes for "Stuffed XXXXake Caps"


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: Bill D
Date: 05 Nov 99 - 06:26 PM

well...I don't like censorship...but I DO appreciate a bit of 'taste'...and overuse of **those** words gets tedious! In certain contexts, it is BETTER to use the words...but not simply as random punctuation....

(I have a tee-shirt that says in big red letters

F*CK CENSORSHIP ...anyone remember the Realist magazine from the 60s?..they introduced a bumper sticker with "F*CK CENSORSHIP" on it...and got all sorts of official hassles!


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: catspaw49
Date: 05 Nov 99 - 07:14 PM

Ya know there Ol' wild, wacky, Willie.....You and I got some strange things in common.

Spaw


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: Bugsy
Date: 05 Nov 99 - 08:55 PM

ENOUGH OF THIS CR*P! Let's stop F**king about and get this Sh*t on the road!!!

cheers

Bugsy


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 05 Nov 99 - 09:44 PM

Bill! The Realist! You! Me! Catspaw! S**T, I feel old!


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 05 Nov 99 - 09:46 PM

Double S**T! My feeble attempt at humour backfired. That should have read: You, Me, Paul Krassner and Catspaw. Now I feel old AND dumb!
Rick


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: MMario
Date: 05 Nov 99 - 10:18 PM

rick. *I* am, why shouldn't you be?


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: Banjer
Date: 05 Nov 99 - 10:40 PM

My Monna use to tell me that folks who had to use a lot of those kind of words had a very limited vocabulary and were just using them to fill in the gaps in their thought processes...I feel like Joe Offer, if I hear a conversation going on with every second or third word a cuss word I will just absent myself in search of a bit more intelligence. As for the original question, I think folks should just post in whatever way they feel comfortable. Anything else would border on telling folks what and how to write or think and that would be against everything I believe in...


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: _gargoyle
Date: 05 Nov 99 - 10:55 PM

thank you, thank you thank you THANK YOU!!!!

Joe!!!

Previously, I committed to the philosophy of "Amster-Amster... sheeer.shheeer...sheer...." (You shouldn't say that 'naughty word') but now you have given all of us free liscence to return to the "original" non- PC traditon the ....DT of the past....

Halleluahah!!!!! "No holds barred".....we can speak our mind's again....without worrying about the "kiddies" (or the "thin-skinned.")

Damn the torpedoes....full speed ahead.


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: Banjer
Date: 05 Nov 99 - 10:59 PM

My Monna????? Unfortunately my Momma never taught me how to spel reel gud or profreed.


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 05 Nov 99 - 11:14 PM

It's been a slow week. Bring on the torpedos.


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: thosp
Date: 05 Nov 99 - 11:58 PM

* aside (which i expect i'll use on a rare occasion)to this day i remember vividly Paul Krassner's article on the Kennedy Assination


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: Bill D
Date: 06 Nov 99 - 12:30 AM

Paul Krassner was one of a kind.....(and I 'think' I still have 2-3 old issues of the Realist buried in the catacombs....gotta go down and dig...)


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: catspaw49
Date: 06 Nov 99 - 12:39 AM

If you can part with one of them...throw it on the auction and you gotta' buyer!!!

Spaw


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: katlaughing
Date: 06 Nov 99 - 04:27 AM

Man! You guys are fucking old! Who the fuck is this Paul guy and what in the hell is the Realist? I'm having none of that shit!

Really, Fortunato, there was no censoring when my kids were growing up, but I agree with Rick. On here, I prefer not to offend people whom I really care about. I call it being Ethically Conscious and downright considerate of those I consider friends.

kat


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: Joe Offer
Date: 06 Nov 99 - 04:29 AM

Uh-oh. Gargoyle, what did I say??? Did I open a can of worms here?
Well, I WILL say this: You have a misplaced and extraneous apostrophe in your last post Garg, and you KNOW I don't like that....
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 06 Nov 99 - 05:56 AM

Traditional spelling are ok by me, and asterisks are traditional - if we can tolerate things like FOTFL, IMHO, and SOH, what's wrong with a few asterisks between f******s?

Actually half the time with these acronyms I have to guess what they mean, and I tend to fill them in with r**e words. Which makes some of them absolutely disgusting. All in the mind, you know.

K****n


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: Shimbo Darktree
Date: 06 Nov 99 - 09:22 AM

Stone the crows and starve the lizards! You blokes (unisex)
really chuck a wobbly when you get going. Makes a man feel
a dill for sticking his nose into the discussion. Strewth!
I was raised in a good Christian family ... didn't stick to it, but.
Everyone knows we Aussies have clean habits, including speech
so you won't get me dropping the magic word on the Net ...
my fucking oath!


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: Tony Burns
Date: 06 Nov 99 - 10:02 AM

Sometimes it is just fun.

btw - for those who didn't figure it out the subject of the Dave Barry thread was "Hey man, this is good shit!"

If a few asterisks cause you concern you must live a charmed f*cking life.

(For the humour impared insert :-)'s at will.)

L8R Doods!


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: Bill D
Date: 06 Nov 99 - 10:46 AM

JUST remembered a joke I heard years ago...told by a guy with an impeccable Aussie accent...try to imagine....

"Oh, I 'ad a fine time last Saturday..it was a fuckin' beautiful day, so I got in my fuckin' car and went for a nice fuckin' drive...till I came to this fuckin' park, and decided to get out and take a fuckin' walk. Well, I walked about a fuckin' mile and here was this fuckin' lovely lass walkin' just ahead of me..I gave her a fuckin' cheery greetin' and we hit it off right away. So we walked on down the fuckin' lane till various things in our fuckin' conversation made me quite fuckin' aware that we were fuckin' interested in the same fuckin' thing....so I looked at her...she looked at me...and we fuckin' smiled and went over a fuckin' fence and behind a fuckin' tree where no one could fuckin' see us......and had sexual intercourse!"


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: catspaw49
Date: 06 Nov 99 - 10:50 AM

Great one Bill!!! LMAO

Spaw


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: Bill D
Date: 06 Nov 99 - 10:52 AM

lordy...first time I ever had a laugh from a joke INSTANTLY from 1000 miles away!..*grin*


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: Shimbo Darktree
Date: 06 Nov 99 - 10:59 AM

Not bad, Bill ... must have been one of my mates!
I was never that lucky ...


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: Margo
Date: 06 Nov 99 - 11:40 AM

Fortunato, as I've noticed it some people use the asterisk and some people spell out the word. Since there are no rules, I presume they do whatever is comfortable for themselves. What's wrong with that? Lighten up!


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: catspaw49
Date: 06 Nov 99 - 11:44 AM

........and that's from Margo, a believer in "Honest, Forthright, and Jovial Obscenity!" (:<))

Spaw - Often a practitioner


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 06 Nov 99 - 01:02 PM

Thosp! Don't even THINK about the Kennedy article!!
Kat! You are most certainly old enough for the Realist and Paul Krassner...just very sheltered. Now keep it that way! You're better off not knowing. Paw, Thosp, Bill D and I want to protect you.
Rick


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: bbelle
Date: 06 Nov 99 - 01:07 PM

Frankly ... I cannot see why anyone would even start a thread on this subject and it seems to me that this is an attempt to validate your choice of vocabulary. I would assume that if obscene euphemism is how you normally carry on a conversation or chat, then you should continue to so, however, please do not expect everyone to buy into it ... moonchild


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: Charlie Baum
Date: 07 Nov 99 - 12:04 AM

I forget whether it was Flanders or Swann (the great British comedy duo) who pointed out that if used all the rude words in our daily lives, we'd have nothing left for special occasions. It's often pleasant to use mild expletives or euphemisms under common conditions and save the special words for occasions such as when something falls on your foot and you need to release a great deal of anger.

--Charlie Baum


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: Charlie Baum
Date: 07 Nov 99 - 12:13 AM

dadblangit! I meant "..if WE used all the rude words..."

--Charlie Baum


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: thosp
Date: 07 Nov 99 - 01:03 AM

you know Charlie B -- when i read it (your first post)i read it as we --even though the we wasn't there--- anyway i completely agree ---- your second post remined me of Gabby Hayes --dagnabit !


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: Barbara
Date: 07 Nov 99 - 01:44 AM

Or Pogo. Walt Kelly had wonderful words: Rowrf, ralph, dangblaggit, razzlefrats, phooey! (not sure of the spelling, guys).
And thosp, as soon as I read your post about Paul Krassner on the Kennedy asassination, a good piece of it popped right up. That was the single most warped piece of writing I ever saw in print, Hunter Thompson and William Burroughs included.
I met the man, at the first birthday party of the underground newspaper I worked on in college, and there wasn't much to the guy other than all those words that went into the Realist, sort of like the tube after the toothpaste is gone.
Can also see in my mind's eye that logo, cross between Kilroy and a schmoo.
Blessings,
Barbara


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: Penny S.
Date: 07 Nov 99 - 07:03 AM

There was a program recently on TV in which some Germans were speaking German (as they would) with subtitles. I could only distinguish a few words (my German is VERY minimal) but one which made it through sounded like "schitt". The translation offered "crap". I am still wondering why that was considered the more appropriate word!

Penny


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 07 Nov 99 - 12:23 PM

Hi Moonchild. That's the wonder of Mudcat. At least once a week I wonder why anyone would start a particular thread. But almost inevitably they evolve into wonderful writing, bizarre takes, and generally keep reminding me why humans are so interesting (and infuriating). Don't you find that you sometimes get dragged into the middle of some threads ONLY because you can't believe where they're coming from? Last week I was dissing a "Simpsons'" thread only to go there and find several bits of amazingly valuable info that have enriched my life!
I DO try and stay out of any threads that contain the words "ABBA, HTML, IRA, ULSTER, and CATSPAW! (just kidding , Paw)
Rick


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: Barbara
Date: 07 Nov 99 - 01:19 PM

Blagdrabbit! That's the other Pogo word I was trying to remember. And on second thought S. Clay Wilson is more twisted than Paul Krassner.
Blessings,
Barbara


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: bassen
Date: 08 Nov 99 - 04:33 AM

This is probably gonna be one of my usual too-late-and-off-the-point postings but that's what I do apparently…

Outside the Phys.Med.department of the White Memorial Hospital in East LA, it's 1955 and I'm five going on six, my friend Georgie Gonzales told me there was this really dirty word that sounded like "fork", so we went around saying "fork" all day and giggling. But then I should have realized that Georgie was less than reliable when he told me that they used ten foot long bull whips in Juvy, but I was only five right? In any case, with a sister five years older than me, I soon got the spelling and pronounciation right. The kids know, don't fool yourself.

Nonetheless, I grew up in a faith where profanity and taking the name of the Lord in vain were definitely high up on the no-no list, hence my profuse use of Christ! , Jesus! and motherfuck from about the age of 14 on. But as others have observed, profanity loses its power if overused and in my case, a wandering life soon allowed me to swear in french and/or norwegian with some proficiency so as to avoid offending whatever sensibilities surrounded me.

I too have reacted with disdain and incredulity at what I saw as the nambypamby use of asterisks here in the forum until today: today I read in Salon magazine about a professor who got fired for saying "nigger" in a class on interpersonal communication where the professor wanted to talk about taboo words and their historical evolution. The professor was demonstrably not a racist, but was fired nonetheless after a student protested against the utterance of the word. It didn't matter that he wanted to discuss why the word had gained the negative power it had, how that came about, what the origin of the word was. The word that must not be uttered was uttered and context was irrelevant. In other words, what he meant was irrelevant to communication. Just to let you non-US 'catters know that asterisks are definitely called for in some situations.

I realize more and more that much has changed in the years since I left the US…

bassen


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: Bill D
Date: 08 Nov 99 - 09:23 PM

...I remember a story about Mark Twain...(Sam Clemens)...who evidently had an amazing command of the vulgar tongue...much to the chagrin of his long-suffering wife. One day he cut himself shaving, and let loose with a long string of x-rated expletives..

Well, his wife, hoping to shame him, stepped up to the bathroom door and repeated every word she had just heard him use...He stood there, eyes wide, shaving brush paused, until she had finished...the looked at her and shook his head..."Well, my dear," he said, "you have the words fine, but you don't have the tune quite right yet!"


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: katlaughing
Date: 08 Nov 99 - 09:55 PM

Rick, me sheltered?!!!! I don't fucking think so! Hey! I was only 9 when Kennedy was shot, so Paul and the ole Realist slipped by without me!luvyaKat


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: catspaw49
Date: 08 Nov 99 - 09:59 PM

I suppose that leaves you out of the conspiracy then...........

Spaw


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: thosp
Date: 08 Nov 99 - 11:07 PM

lets' see if this works--- an interview with Paul Krassner in a recent issue of The Scoop---------------------- If you've laughed at a countercultural joke anytime in the last 40 years, you probably owe Paul Krassner a word of thanks.

In 1958, Paul founded a fiercely independent humor magazine called The Realist, in which shrewdly funny investigative reports run alongside revealing news items and humor pieces ranging from cheerful to sharply satiric. Except for an interregnum in the 1970s, Paul has published The Realist continuously for over four decades, publishing original work by Joseph Heller, Ken Kesey, Norman Mailer, and too many other well-known writers to list.

Outside of The Realist, Paul has led perhaps the quintessential counterculture life: he edited Lenny Bruce's autobiography, performed comedy in concerts with the Grateful Dead and the Velvet Underground, dropped acid with Tim Leary, and protested the Vietnam war with Abbie Hoffman and Jerry Rubin.

What makes Paul cool, though, isn't who he knows or where he has been, but the way he always leavens his acute sense of injustice with an equal sense of the absurd. For example, Dick Gregory once announced on Paul's radio show that until the Vietnam War was over, he was giving up solid foods. In turn, Paul announced that until the Vietnam War was over, he was eating all of Dick Gregory's meals.

The FBI once called Paul Krassner a "raving, unconfined nut."

I consider Paul Krassner a national treasure.

The Realist's outlook and spirit have been a huge influence on this column. When I asked Paul to write the foreword to my first book, I felt like some kid in a garage band playing his demo tape for Lou Reed. I was honored when Paul agreed. I'm even more honored that he has become a friend.

And now the bad news: Paul is ceasing publication of The Realist after only six more issues, after which America will be a little bit less cool. While the magazine is still available, I thought it might be a good idea to sit down and grill Paul about his activities in a way the FBI never got a chance to.

___________________________

BH: Why are you ceasing publication of The Realist? Is reality finally getting too bizarre to satirize?

PK: I've been doing it since 1958, and all my causes -- from anti-circumcision to anti-nuclear testing -- are now part of mainstream awareness. Besides, there are a few novels I'd like to write. True, reality does get increasingly bizarre, but that's the challenge. Meanwhile, performers like Harry Shearer and publications like The Onion make it clear that The Realist has served its purpose, which was to help liberate communication simply by example.

(Note: for a subscription to the final six issues of The Realist, send $12 to Box 1230, Venice CA 90294.)

BH: Speaking of ideas entering the mainstream, you've had several instances of "astral comedy," where something you wrote completely in jest shortly became true. What's your favorite?

PK: I recall when I predicted during a performance that there would be dehydrated urine for sale by mail order for use at drug tests, and then it actually happened. This is a perfect example of my earliest lesson in life: One person's logic is another person's humor.

BH: You've published a lot of controversial stuff, including what might be called alternative versions of Watergate, the Patty Hearst kidnapping, and the Manson murders, and a wickedly pointed (some would say notorious) satire of the pages missing from William Manchester's book on the JFK assassination. Is there anything you ever published that you wish you hadn't?

PK: No, because my soul-searching before publication made me have my retrospect in advance, so that there was no need for regret later on. Of course, there are different ways I would have phrased things, for clarification, say, or used better examples to illustrate a concept.

BH: Before you created The Realist, you started in New York in the offices of Mad Magazine and had an early association with muckraking publisher Lyle Stuart. Would it be fair to characterize your magazine's attitude as a melding of the two?

PK: Yes. It was a deliberate agenda. I wanted to combine entertainment with the 1st Amendment.

BH: You edited Lenny Bruce's autobiography, How To Talk Dirty And Influence People. Is his kind of comedy still alive? How do you see it continuing?

PK: Lenny was unique, but the spirit of his exploration continues in many forms, not just in the arts, but sticking to principles even while friends accuse you of being self-destructive. I may be projecting, but pretending that I'm using Lenny as a touchstone, he would appreciate Chris Rock's comedic talent, but he would be dismayed by Andrew Dice Clay's exploitation of taboos.

BH: Artemis records is releasing a CD of your own stand-up comedy. How would you say that the national sense of humor has changed during the decades?

PK: The fact that my album is titled "Sex, Drugs and the Antichrist" is itself an example of the change. When I began I was a lone voice, and now irreverence has become an industry. In the process, much of popular humor has become a game of hostile name-calling and easy-reference jokes, and instead of laughing the audience applauds itself for getting the reference.

BH: Your new book of Impolite Interviews (Seven Stories Press) includes chats with a wide range of figures from across the political spectrum, including tough guy Norman Mailer and American Nazi leader George Lincoln Rockwell. Ideology aside, which one would kick the other's ass in a bar fight?

PK: I think Mailer would whup Rockwell's ass; bravery would conquer cowardice.

BH: You're also one of the few people who can claim face time with both Squeaky Fromme and G. Gordon Liddy. How would you compare the two, in terms of

a) fashion sense, b) reasoning skills, and c) ability to act under pressure?

PK: Well, I hung around with Squeaky somewhat, but only met Giddy superficially a couple of times. What they had in common was selfishness in the guise of loyalty --Squeaky's loyalty to Charles Manson was equivalent to Liddy's loyalty to Richard Nixon. Specifically, in terms of:

a) fashion sense: I suspect Liddy wears thong underwear three sizes too small. When Squeaky shot Gerald Ford she was wearing a Little Red Riding Hood outfit. I congratulated her for being prepared to fade into the crowd.

b) reasoning skills: Liddy is much shrewder than Squeaky. She never could have pulled off Watergate. Oops, neither did he.

c) ability to act under pressure: Well, they are comparable in terms of not caring about the consequences of their behavior. Although Squeaky wasn't one of Manson's killers, she approved of the act because she thought it was a copycat murder to prove that Bobby Beusolei, in prison for a similar murder, wasn't really the perpetrator, who was still at large. (The real motivation was a cocaine deal gone bad. Manson's brainwashed family served as a hit squad for organized criminals he met behind bars.) As for Liddy, when he broke in to the office of Daniel Ellsberg's psychiatrist, he made it look like a junkie's burglary. A black man named Elmer Davis was arrested and convicted of that crime, and he ended up serving Liddy's time.

BH: You were one of the founders of the Yippies, and at the Democratic convention in Chicago in 1968, you told a reporter that the first act of civil disobedience you were planning was to put truth serum in the TV reporters' drinks. Suppose someone actually did that. What would be the lead story on CNN?

PK: Then, it would've been a report that truth serum had been put in the reporters' drink, plus the truth behind the drug war, the Vietnam war, pick a war, any war. Now it would be the same.

BH: Trivial Pursuit cards name you as the man who suggested putting LSD in the Chicago water supply. Do you have any trouble getting women to let you buy them a drink?

PK: I've never been in that position, since I've never taken any legal drugs.

BH: Lyndon LaRouche once published a report that you were brainwashed and secretly controlled by England's Tavistock Institute. Taking LaRouche at his word, did you get to meet the Queen in person, or did she just send the members of KISS to be your controllers?

PK: Let me put it this way: Have you ever seen Lyndon LaRouche and the Queen together? Aha! For that matter, did you ever see Kiss together? It was all done with mirrors.

BH: You used to work for Hugh Hefner at Playboy, and after Larry Flynt was shot, you were the interim publisher of Hustler (where, just so people know, you tried to pervert a large chunk of Larry Flynt's empire into actual journalism). But at the same time, you've been an ardent advocate of women's rights and gender equality. Some would say there's a contradiction. Your response?

PK: My rationalization was that it was a way of working from the inside of the beast's proverbial belly. People in general and men in particular are victims of their conditioning. It's snobbery to think that Hustler readers are monolithic creatures beyond change. In my hectic six months working for Flynt, for example, I commissioned an article from a feminist writer on abortion rights, and hopefully those pages didn't stick together when it came time to read the piece.

BH: By the way, Al Goldstein, publisher of Screw, lives in my apartment building. Once The Realist shuts down, you might need a gig. Shall I call him for you?

PK: No, thanks. I have his number.

BH: When you ran Hustler, out of fairness you once published a picture of yourself nude. What's the most creative use you ever heard of anyone using that particular issue?

PK: A couple of women told me they masturbated to it. And people rolled joints on that page.

BH: In 1979, you were in San Francisco and got caught in the post-verdict riot after the assassin who killed Harvey Milk wound up taking only a manslaughter rap, having successfully employed the world's first Twinkies-made-me-insane defense. In the melee, a cop mistook you for someone worth beating and clubbed you so badly that you were almost paralyzed and still suffer from several permanent injuries. Have you ever found out who that officer was or spoken to him since? What would you say to him?

PK: There were two of 'em. I guess I'd ask if they'd agree that they were being sadistic inasmuch as they didn't arrest me for anything. And then I'd ask if I could borrow $20. The old guilt-trip ploy.

BH: You have another book coming out soon called Pot Stories For The Soul (High Times Books), a collection of anecdotes from a number of writers -- including a certain internet political humor columnist -- concerning their experiences with marijuana. Care to share a favorite?

PK: One that comes to mind is the time somebody smoked marijuana for the first time at a rock concert, and her friend asked why she kept pinching his knee. She was much relieved because she thought her own knee had gone numb. Another is how a reporter for Newsweek was assigned to turn on other staffers who were researching the blossoming of the counterculture.

BH: You once published a cartoon in which the name SPIRO AGNEW was rearranged to spell GROW A PENIS. I've taken the liberty of anagramming the name PAUL KRASSNER, which yields the following variations:

LURK NEAR PASS REAL SUN SPARK USSR PENAL ARK U.S. RENAL SPARK SLAP RANK? SURE LUNAR ASS PERK PERUSAL SNARK

Which one is your favorite, and why?

PK: LUNAR ASS PERK, because it has the most cosmic meaning.

BH: And which one do you think Spiro Agnew would like best?

PK: GROW A PENIS. People always think everything is about THEM. If you've laughed at a countercultural joke anytime in the last 40 years, you probably owe Paul Krassner a word of thanks.

In 1958, Paul founded a fiercely independent humor magazine called The Realist, in which shrewdly funny investigative reports run alongside revealing news items and humor pieces ranging from cheerful to sharply satiric. Except for an interregnum in the 1970s, Paul has published The Realist continuously for over four decades, publishing original work by Joseph Heller, Ken Kesey, Norman Mailer, and too many other well-known writers to list.

Outside of The Realist, Paul has led perhaps the quintessential counterculture life: he edited Lenny Bruce's autobiography, performed comedy in concerts with the Grateful Dead and the Velvet Underground, dropped acid with Tim Leary, and protested the Vietnam war with Abbie Hoffman and Jerry Rubin.

What makes Paul cool, though, isn't who he knows or where he has been, but the way he always leavens his acute sense of injustice with an equal sense of the absurd. For example, Dick Gregory once announced on Paul's radio show that until the Vietnam War was over, he was giving up solid foods. In turn, Paul announced that until the Vietnam War was over, he was eating all of Dick Gregory's meals.

The FBI once called Paul Krassner a "raving, unconfined nut."

I consider Paul Krassner a national treasure.

The Realist's outlook and spirit have been a huge influence on this column. When I asked Paul to write the foreword to my first book, I felt like some kid in a garage band playing his demo tape for Lou Reed. I was honored when Paul agreed. I'm even more honored that he has become a friend.

And now the bad news: Paul is ceasing publication of The Realist after only six more issues, after which America will be a little bit less cool. While the magazine is still available, I thought it might be a good idea to sit down and grill Paul about his activities in a way the FBI never got a chance to.

___________________________

BH: Why are you ceasing publication of The Realist? Is reality finally getting too bizarre to satirize?

PK: I've been doing it since 1958, and all my causes -- from anti-circumcision to anti-nuclear testing -- are now part of mainstream awareness. Besides, there are a few novels I'd like to write. True, reality does get increasingly bizarre, but that's the challenge. Meanwhile, performers like Harry Shearer and publications like The Onion make it clear that The Realist has served its purpose, which was to help liberate communication simply by example.

(Note: for a subscription to the final six issues of The Realist, send $12 to Box 1230, Venice CA 90294.)

BH: Speaking of ideas entering the mainstream, you've had several instances of "astral comedy," where something you wrote completely in jest shortly became true. What's your favorite?

PK: I recall when I predicted during a performance that there would be dehydrated urine for sale by mail order for use at drug tests, and then it actually happened. This is a perfect example of my earliest lesson in life: One person's logic is another person's humor.

BH: You've published a lot of controversial stuff, including what might be called alternative versions of Watergate, the Patty Hearst kidnapping, and the Manson murders, and a wickedly pointed (some would say notorious) satire of the pages missing from William Manchester's book on the JFK assassination. Is there anything you ever published that you wish you hadn't?

PK: No, because my soul-searching before publication made me have my retrospect in advance, so that there was no need for regret later on. Of course, there are different ways I would have phrased things, for clarification, say, or used better examples to illustrate a concept.

BH: Before you created The Realist, you started in New York in the offices of Mad Magazine and had an early association with muckraking publisher Lyle Stuart. Would it be fair to characterize your magazine's attitude as a melding of the two?

PK: Yes. It was a deliberate agenda. I wanted to combine entertainment with the 1st Amendment.

BH: You edited Lenny Bruce's autobiography, How To Talk Dirty And Influence People. Is his kind of comedy still alive? How do you see it continuing?

PK: Lenny was unique, but the spirit of his exploration continues in many forms, not just in the arts, but sticking to principles even while friends accuse you of being self-destructive. I may be projecting, but pretending that I'm using Lenny as a touchstone, he would appreciate Chris Rock's comedic talent, but he would be dismayed by Andrew Dice Clay's exploitation of taboos.

BH: Artemis records is releasing a CD of your own stand-up comedy. How would you say that the national sense of humor has changed during the decades?

PK: The fact that my album is titled "Sex, Drugs and the Antichrist" is itself an example of the change. When I began I was a lone voice, and now irreverence has become an industry. In the process, much of popular humor has become a game of hostile name-calling and easy-reference jokes, and instead of laughing the audience applauds itself for getting the reference.

BH: Your new book of Impolite Interviews (Seven Stories Press) includes chats with a wide range of figures from across the political spectrum, including tough guy Norman Mailer and American Nazi leader George Lincoln Rockwell. Ideology aside, which one would kick the other's ass in a bar fight?

PK: I think Mailer would whup Rockwell's ass; bravery would conquer cowardice.

BH: You're also one of the few people who can claim face time with both Squeaky Fromme and G. Gordon Liddy. How would you compare the two, in terms of

a) fashion sense, b) reasoning skills, and c) ability to act under pressure?

PK: Well, I hung around with Squeaky somewhat, but only met Giddy superficially a couple of times. What they had in common was selfishness in the guise of loyalty --Squeaky's loyalty to Charles Manson was equivalent to Liddy's loyalty to Richard Nixon. Specifically, in terms of:

a) fashion sense: I suspect Liddy wears thong underwear three sizes too small. When Squeaky shot Gerald Ford she was wearing a Little Red Riding Hood outfit. I congratulated her for being prepared to fade into the crowd.

b) reasoning skills: Liddy is much shrewder than Squeaky. She never could have pulled off Watergate. Oops, neither did he.

c) ability to act under pressure: Well, they are comparable in terms of not caring about the consequences of their behavior. Although Squeaky wasn't one of Manson's killers, she approved of the act because she thought it was a copycat murder to prove that Bobby Beusolei, in prison for a similar murder, wasn't really the perpetrator, who was still at large. (The real motivation was a cocaine deal gone bad. Manson's brainwashed family served as a hit squad for organized criminals he met behind bars.) As for Liddy, when he broke in to the office of Daniel Ellsberg's psychiatrist, he made it look like a junkie's burglary. A black man named Elmer Davis was arrested and convicted of that crime, and he ended up serving Liddy's time.

BH: You were one of the founders of the Yippies, and at the Democratic convention in Chicago in 1968, you told a reporter that the first act of civil disobedience you were planning was to put truth serum in the TV reporters' drinks. Suppose someone actually did that. What would be the lead story on CNN?

PK: Then, it would've been a report that truth serum had been put in the reporters' drink, plus the truth behind the drug war, the Vietnam war, pick a war, any war. Now it would be the same.

BH: Trivial Pursuit cards name you as the man who suggested putting LSD in the Chicago water supply. Do you have any trouble getting women to let you buy them a drink?

PK: I've never been in that position, since I've never taken any legal drugs.

BH: Lyndon LaRouche once published a report that you were brainwashed and secretly controlled by England's Tavistock Institute. Taking LaRouche at his word, did you get to meet the Queen in person, or did she just send the members of KISS to be your controllers?

PK: Let me put it this way: Have you ever seen Lyndon LaRouche and the Queen together? Aha! For that matter, did you ever see Kiss together? It was all done with mirrors.

BH: You used to work for Hugh Hefner at Playboy, and after Larry Flynt was shot, you were the interim publisher of Hustler (where, just so people know, you tried to pervert a large chunk of Larry Flynt's empire into actual journalism). But at the same time, you've been an ardent advocate of women's rights and gender equality. Some would say there's a contradiction. Your response?

PK: My rationalization was that it was a way of working from the inside of the beast's proverbial belly. People in general and men in particular are victims of their conditioning. It's snobbery to think that Hustler readers are monolithic creatures beyond change. In my hectic six months working for Flynt, for example, I commissioned an article from a feminist writer on abortion rights, and hopefully those pages didn't stick together when it came time to read the piece.

BH: By the way, Al Goldstein, publisher of Screw, lives in my apartment building. Once The Realist shuts down, you might need a gig. Shall I call him for you?

PK: No, thanks. I have his number.

BH: When you ran Hustler, out of fairness you once published a picture of yourself nude. What's the most creative use you ever heard of anyone using that particular issue?

PK: A couple of women told me they masturbated to it. And people rolled joints on that page.

BH: In 1979, you were in San Francisco and got caught in the post-verdict riot after the assassin who killed Harvey Milk wound up taking only a manslaughter rap, having successfully employed the world's first Twinkies-made-me-insane defense. In the melee, a cop mistook you for someone worth beating and clubbed you so badly that you were almost paralyzed and still suffer from several permanent injuries. Have you ever found out who that officer was or spoken to him since? What would you say to him?

PK: There were two of 'em. I guess I'd ask if they'd agree that they were being sadistic inasmuch as they didn't arrest me for anything. And then I'd ask if I could borrow $20. The old guilt-trip ploy.

BH: You have another book coming out soon called Pot Stories For The Soul (High Times Books), a collection of anecdotes from a number of writers -- including a certain internet political humor columnist -- concerning their experiences with marijuana. Care to share a favorite?

PK: One that comes to mind is the time somebody smoked marijuana for the first time at a rock concert, and her friend asked why she kept pinching his knee. She was much relieved because she thought her own knee had gone numb. Another is how a reporter for Newsweek was assigned to turn on other staffers who were researching the blossoming of the counterculture.

BH: You once published a cartoon in which the name SPIRO AGNEW was rearranged to spell GROW A PENIS. I've taken the liberty of anagramming the name PAUL KRASSNER, which yields the following variations:

LURK NEAR PASS REAL SUN SPARK USSR PENAL ARK U.S. RENAL SPARK SLAP RANK? SURE LUNAR ASS PERK PERUSAL SNARK

Which one is your favorite, and why?

PK: LUNAR ASS PERK, because it has the most cosmic meaning.

BH: And which one do you think Spiro Agnew would like best?

PK: GROW A PENIS. People always think everything is about THEM.


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: katlaughing
Date: 09 Nov 99 - 12:26 AM

Well, why didn't you old fogies say he once worked at MAD magazine!??? Then I MIGHT have noticed! Thanks, thosp. I am sending in my $12 tomorrow. And, yes, Spaw, that lets me out of THAT conspiracy, at least! BTW, anybody else saddened at the downhill trend of MAD since Bill Gaines passed on? My kids and I were religious in getting each issue and almost wearing them out. We haven't bought but maybe a handful since he died because the whole thing is just so much trach now, compared to what it used to be. Hmmm....wonder what my collection is worth?


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: Roger the Sk***ler
Date: 09 Nov 99 - 11:04 AM

Last time I parked outside the Mudcat Tavern, some euphemistic Heron (I suspect Waylon) dropped asterisks all over it. If I catch the Oedipan, I'll wring its neck.


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: Davey
Date: 09 Nov 99 - 11:11 AM

I'd just like to add my thoughts on the topic. I don't have any problem with anyone using the straight words or the ** words if they fit the context of the conversation. I will occasionally use one of those words myself, but I too will tend to avoid people whose every sentence is full of obscenities, as I don't think they will have anything intelligent to say to me. And I think the use of obscenities has gotten to the point where they become a meaningless substitute for creative use of language.

As an example, how many times have you heard someone referred to as a 'fucking asshole'. That phrase can have as many meanings as the number of people saying it. Why not be more inventive and specific, and call the person an egotistical, overbearing clod, or an insensitive, self-centered blob of snot. Let's bring back a little creativity in our language.

Davey... (:>)


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: Bruce O.
Date: 09 Nov 99 - 02:39 PM

Asterisks don't bother me if I can figure out what the word is, but in 16th and 17th century pieces I don't always know the word. Also tantalizing is the following: From a Scots MS of the 18th century we have one which is not as innocent as it first appears, as the wrong answer is reasonable. [NLS MS 17799, f. 143]

Be kind my dear Cloe, lets kiss & lets.............Love [F**k
Let our favourite guides be ye Sparrow & ..........Dove [Duck
Tho' Adam was dull till God made him a.............Pair [Pr**k
Yet he quickly found out wt to do with his.........Fair [Stick?
He ne'er stood complaining & whining in............Rhyme
But was wiser & knew what to do wth his............Time
He quickly took every thing by the right...........Handle
Un'drest in a minute & out with the................Candle
Then I leave you to guess wt he did with his.......Dear
When Eve had no shame & her Adam no................Fear

Can anyone finishing it?


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: Easy Rider
Date: 10 Nov 99 - 10:39 AM

I don't think it is necessary to use those four letter words, asterisked or not, in ordinary conversation or debate, unless you are talking about the act of ****ing itself. (I use *s here to denote that many words can be substituted for the *s) Most of the time they are used, to convey emotion, in a violent and abusive way. Violence, whether verbal or physical, destroys the credibility of any argument or arguer and distracts from the ideas being debated.

My father told me once that when you have to resort to violence, to make your point, in an argument, you have lost the argument. I never forgot that, and I try to live by it, as best I can.


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: Roger the skiffler
Date: 10 Nov 99 - 10:53 AM

I'm naturally very clean-spoken (ahem) which I attribute to the clip round the ear I got from my mother when I came home from school and said "crap"!!
WARNING:typical RtS thread creep follows
Recently we went to the theatre with a friend of long-standing and stopped off on the way home for a Chinese takeaway. I put it in the car boot (trunk) and my wife slammed the lid- a bit prematurely, catching my head! Our friend said she never realised I had such an extensive, rich and colourful vocabulary and my ever-loving told me not to make such a fuss and not to bleed all over the upholstery.
It is much more effective when saved up for special occasions rather than used as if there were only one adjective.


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: Patrish(inactive)
Date: 10 Nov 99 - 11:05 AM

I wish I could use asterisks when I was speaking, mind you its only when I'm driving that I need them. Here is a story to illustrate this.

I only learnt to drive three years ago. I gave my Dad a lift (first time I'd driven him anywhere) he strated telling what gear I should be in, stupid directions that I knew were wrong. I ended up a long way from where I wanted to be. My Dad started complaining. I told him to get out of the f**king car and walk. This was the very first time he had ever heard me swear. He said "what happened to my mild mannered daughter" I said "She learnt to drive"...

Patrish


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: Fortunato
Date: 10 Nov 99 - 11:12 AM

YNWYA, (You know who are)

Your language is most !@#$%^& UNACCEPTABLE!

Moonchild, I started the thread because I thought it would be fun. As the great bard Ricky said: "You can't please everybody, you got to please yourself." It was good for me!


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Subject: RE: BS: Asterisk Euphemism
From: Bert
Date: 10 Nov 99 - 07:07 PM

refresh


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This Thread Is Closed.


Mudcat time: 19 January 7:09 AM EST

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