I love swear words. My love of swear words gets me in trouble from time to time because I don’t really believe in and am not very good at self censorship, so I’ll use most of them and, often, at the most inappropriate time. Like my view with everything in life, do what the fuck you want as long as you can live with the consequences. So, I’ll admit that there is one swear word I won’t use and that’s simply because I don’t want to live with the consequences of using it. I’m not going to tell you what it is. I’ll let you try to work that one out.
What I don’t love are words that people use instead of swear words. OK. I understand that you don’t want your five year old to mimic obscene expletives when she stubs her toe at school, but in front of other adults, if you’re going to swear, just fucking get on with it. It’s so disingenuous and, quite frankly, obnoxious, to hear an adult say ‘Oh heck!’ when they are well and truly pissed off about something that they clearly feel deserves an expletive. Everyone knows what you mean and everyone knows that you’re trying to indicate some sort of self appointed moral superiority by not saying what you actually mean. But you mean ‘fuck’, you’re thinking ‘fuck’ and ‘fuck’ is the appropriate word.
I allow one exception (well, maybe a few others but this is my biggest indulgence), and that is the word ‘feck’. ‘Feck’ is commonly used by Irish people instead of ‘fuck’ and it is not just cute and adorable (which I know will annoy some of my Irish readers but they can just fuck off), but it’s also hugely expressive. Here are a few literary examples to help you understand just how perfect ‘feck’ is.
“Oh thank Christ the fecker’s over. A pile of fecking shite.” (Martin McDonagh, The Cripple of Inishmaan)
“I’m so feckin’ hungry I could eat that feckin’ horse” (Amanda Whittington, Ladies’ Day)
This exception, by the way, is only granted to authentic Irish people – and by that, I mean people who actually live in Ireland, not some plonker, who feels culturally bereft and has discovered that they are officially Irish on Ancestry.com. Let me give you a clue. If you were born in a country and lived there your whole life, that is your nationality. There truly is nothing more annoying than watching a bunch of people, who have never even been to Ireland, sporting four leaf clovers, drinking green Guinness and loudly proclaiming to anyone who will listen that they are Irish. Again, exceptions are made for people whose families did not find themselves in the land of their birth by choice. They are the only people, in my view, who are allowed to claim close national and cultural ties with a country they may have never been to.
Now, let’s return to ‘feck’. Today I am fucking ungrateful for the extension of that word into the word ‘feckless’. There is something I just find so wrong about using that word. It carries a tone of superiority, judgement and a complete lack of fun. The people who use it, say it as if being feckless is a bad thing. When, if you were Irish, it actually means you give no fucks. That makes me very happy.
Funnily enough, while ‘feck’, as an alternative for ‘fuck’, has Irish roots, ‘feckless’ has Scottish roots. Yep, they had a ‘feck’ of their very own. They also had a word, which means the opposite of ‘feckless’ and that is ‘feckful’. I may just start using ‘feckful’. I like that word, especially as most people won’t have a fucking clue what I mean when I say they are ‘feckful’ and may think I am suggesting they are full of fuck.
So, if you are an adult and you think swearing is bad, naughty, sinful and will result in an eternity of hellfire -then don’t fucking swear. Don’t use ‘heck’, ‘fudge’, fiddlsticks (omg I hate that one) or ‘flippin’, because we all know you meant ‘fuck’ and if you meant it, you fucking swore you pillock. Today, I am ungrateful for self righteous twat wangles, who think that by making up pretend swear words, they are somehow better people. They can go fuck themselves.