August 31, 2006

Our New Effing Vocabulary

When you become a parent, you have to make certain sacrifices. You won't be getting as much sleep as you're used to, your house will probably be a wreck, you won't have too much time to veg out and, most importantly, you'll have to alter your vocabulary ever so slightly. And by ever so slightly I mean radically. Especially if you and your wife swear like sailors. Like particularly filthy sailors who try their damndest to push the boundaries of acceptable communication. Sailors who think assmunch is a term of endearment.

Allow me to illustrate our new improved vocabulary.

Now Pronounced: Ay
Usage: I think my hair's on fire! Get your ay in here and help me put it out!
Variations: ayhole, aymunch, aykissing, ayhat...

Now Pronounced: Bee
Usage: That Ann Coulter is such a huge bee I bet her mom wishes she'd never allowed Satan in her bedroom.
Variations: sonofabee, she-bee...

Now Pronounced: Dee
Usage: John Holmes was the porn star with the big dee, right?
Variations: deehead, deesucker, deenostril, deewrinkle...

Now Pronounced: Eff
Usage: Eff off you big effer
Variations: effer, effnuts, effing, mothereffer, efftard, effbuddy, dumbeff...

Now Pronounced: Ess
Usage: Oh look! Some esshead let his dog leave a tidy pile of ess in our yard.
Variations: essy, ess-for-brains, essstorm, esshead...

Play these out in your head. Run through a few real-world scenarios. If you're anything like me, you'll find them decidedly less satisfying than the actual adult words and phrases. Sucks dee, yo. Eff yeah.

Allow my to illustrate the possible complications using a conversation Beth and I had last night...

Me: that's why I did that thing about that effhead Rumsfeld.
Her: know, those noodles by themselves kinda taste like ass.
Me: Shhh. You can't say that anymore!
Her: What?
Me: Ay. You can't say that in front of Mia.
Her: Oh, damn.
Me: Yeah, sucks dee, doesn't it?
Her: You mean I can't say 'tastes like ass' anymore, ever?
Me: Nope. But you can say that it 'tastes like donkey balls.'

Parenting has a lot to do with sacrifices, some big, some small, some effing essy.

Posted by Chris at August 31, 2006 7:01 AM

OK, you're doing good. But you can't just cut out the big ones and call it a day.

Damn, crap and hell must also be stricken from your vocabulary. I know, they seem like such harmless little words. Trust me, they are not.

Also, you should probably stop saying suck or sucks, unless you want the babt to take a bite of cold fries at MickeyD's and say something like, 'Damn, this crap sucks.'

I'm assuming that would be embarrassing.

Posted by: Contrary at August 31, 2006 7:28 AM


Yeah, I think Contrary is right. You've gotta watch all the language. Otherwise the next time you're with your parents and your kid sees a deer on the side of the road, you'll have to explain when the child says "Shit! Damn deer! Stay out of the damn road!"

Posted by: Alissa at August 31, 2006 7:57 AM

Effin' A, man!

That's A, not Ay.

Posted by: Allan at August 31, 2006 7:58 AM

Hmmm. Yes, we've been doing the same thing for a while now.

My biggest fear now is that Ian's preschool teacher will still be offended when he says something like "Eff me in my stinky goat ay." or "Stop acting like such an ay-wad." or "Stuipd see esser."

Or something like that.

Not that they hear that kind of stuff from us.


Posted by: Sarah, Goon Squad Sarah at August 31, 2006 8:04 AM

Spelling curse words just does not give them the same impact.

Posted by: Bill at August 31, 2006 8:17 AM

I'm working on just teaching my kid about when it's not polite to use the words. Hell, my mom knows I cuss. She won't be shocked if my daughters repeat after me. If figure the kids are gong to hear it anyway so I might as well stop feeling guilty that it's coming from me.

"Besides, there are damn few words anybody understands." ~"Inherit the Wind"

Posted by: ktjrdn at August 31, 2006 8:19 AM

I've found that Mike and I have done well with curbing the nasty words in front of the kids, but watch out for your childless friends! They have no censor button!

Posted by: Lisa at August 31, 2006 8:24 AM

Good luck with that! The kids figure it out. My daughter was doing swear word madlibs at the age of two. We'd leave conspicuous blank spots in our comments and the kid would look at us and say, "Dammit? How 'bout dammit?" She's three and a half now and we've caught her saying, "Awww, EFF!" a few times. (Yep, sugar and spice there!)

Posted by: Amanda at August 31, 2006 8:40 AM

An alternative for bee could be "B with an itch".

I learned that from my 16 year old neice.

Happy alterna-swearing!

Posted by: Jen, South Florida at August 31, 2006 8:42 AM

I don't worry about cursing too much - my dogs bark-cuss like sailors!

Posted by: Heather at August 31, 2006 8:45 AM

Eff. That's bull-ess.

I think my parents gave up after one (ie. me).

Posted by: E :) at August 31, 2006 8:53 AM

Um, yeah. I have a 10-year-old son who is frequently heard to say "This sucks!" Drives my mom batty. Doesn't really bother me because, duh, I'm where he got it from.
When my kids were smaller, I did my best to curb the big bad words. Then when they were old enough to understand me when I said "I can say this, but you can't" I returned to sailorland. ;)

Posted by: Traci at August 31, 2006 8:55 AM

So dick is no good, but balls is perfectly acceptable?

Also if I heard that conversation I would have died laughing, because I'm twelve and you said "donkey balls".

Posted by: Jessie at August 31, 2006 8:57 AM

You know, in my house if someone was a Kook that was a good thing. A Crazy Kook was even better.
So what happens?
I tell my second grade teacher she is a Crazy Kook, and I get my first detention! Seven years old and I've got a record!
They called my mother who came down and explained it all, but I was scared for life.

Posted by: Maribeth at August 31, 2006 9:16 AM

Oh I cannot wait 'till Mia spontaneously curses at a situation. It is SO hard not to laugh when you're "supposed" to ignore it or act disappointed.

Because my parent's aren't cursers, (whatdafa?) I had to make up words. I've been told that my toddler response to being pulled off the beach shore by the tide (then rescued by my dad) was to cough up salt water then rush back to the edge of the waves so I could stomp my feet and yell "DIGGLE DIGGLE!" at the ocean.

Posted by: Betti at August 31, 2006 9:21 AM

That's it, I'll never be able to have children because i swear like a dirty, dirty whore.

no effin' way i'm gonna be able to use initials for that ess. Bee that sucks some dee and ay...

Posted by: suze at August 31, 2006 9:33 AM

Keep up the good work. Then when Mia is 10, she'll see a movie she's really shouldn't, then she'll come to you and ask, "Daddy, what does 'fuck you' mean?"

I kid you not.

Posted by: Alison at August 31, 2006 9:44 AM

What works for my high school students may work at home - I don't know since Dude is pre-talking.

In my classroom, fuck and shit are banned words. However, as words have power, there is the temptation to use them anyway. I have not banned the words 'fug' nor 'shizz'. Go on say them - they sound funny and less aggressive. They are permitted substitutes and they removed the desire to swear among many of the kids.

Unfortunately, I am now going to have to ban whole expressions like "Fug this shizz, teacher, homework blows." ;-)

Posted by: Jacqueline at August 31, 2006 9:56 AM

But what happens when she's 15, hanging out with her friends, trying to be cool and says something like "Ess! That show Friday night was bad ay! That bass player was totally checking out my tees." And then they all laugh at her for sounding like a dumb ay??

As her parent, I think it's your duty to teach her to swear properly while she's young so she doesn't sound like a total dork as a teenager. You don't want her sitting alone at lunch, do you??

Of course, there is a reason why I am not a parent and so my advice should probably be disregarded. heh.

Posted by: Betty at August 31, 2006 10:05 AM

Guaranteed that among her first words, will be "donkey balls". And since it's my kid, I find that hilarious.

Posted by: Brad at August 31, 2006 10:13 AM

I've had to give up my favorites as well...
1. Son of a Bitch to son of a bisquit or son of a b or just SON OF A....

2. Damnit! to Dagnabit...which much to my pleasure 1/2 of my kids' friends now use that term. Yeah, their parents are pleased.

3. Damnit to Hell! to dagnabit to hades. Not a good one, I know.

I haven't been able to give up my shit though. Who can?

Posted by: Kelly at August 31, 2006 10:28 AM

Not swearing is hard. We try not to swear around my niece and nephew when they visit, and we struggle when it is only a few hours. I'm sure my children will be the ones who go to kindergarden and use the word fuck.

Posted by: bad penguin at August 31, 2006 10:42 AM

i have a feeling that my kid, should i have one, will grow up to be a huge effing potty mouth.

Posted by: jodi at August 31, 2006 10:49 AM

That reminds me of one of my (many) favorite quotes from A Christmas Story:

"In the heat of battle my father wove a tapestry of obscenities that as far as we know is still hanging in space over Lake Michigan."

Posted by: Liz at August 31, 2006 10:53 AM

The trick is protecting them from strangers.

One night I was walking with a friend down the sidewalk in one of those uber-cute uber-developed little shopping communities and having had a glass too many at the winebar said something with with work "cock" in it.


I noticed the sweet, innocent 5 year old girl walking down the street with her daddy - not two feet infront of me.

My response? "Oh, fuck."

I'm never going to be allowed to have children.

Posted by: Autumn at August 31, 2006 11:02 AM

Way back when I was very new to having kids around me at all - I was 22 and my nephew was 2 - my sister-in-law had very grudgingly allowed me to transport him the 3 miles between our home and theirs for a babysitting session... An ay-hole pulled out in front of us in traffic - of course I said "shit" - I thought not very loud. And for the next 3 hours, he proceeded to say "shit" and not much else. We were trying not to react, but I just knew they were never going to let me watch him again... they did...

Anyway - I think finding creative words for swearing isn't a bad thing...exercises the mind, the vocabulary.... :)

Posted by: Sue at August 31, 2006 11:21 AM

"Me: Nope. But you can say that it 'tastes like donkey balls.'"

Well, that's just about made my day.


Posted by: Alice at August 31, 2006 11:37 AM

What goes around, comes around. A conversation you'll hopefully not have later with your daughter.

"Honey, how was your dinner?"

"WTF Dad? This spaghetti tastes like Ay. Get your head out of your Ay and get me some F-ing ice cream."

Posted by: at August 31, 2006 11:46 AM

Sorry, that was me.

Posted by: Chris at August 31, 2006 11:47 AM

My parents cursed in French when I was a kid. I didn't know that at the time - but if I repeated it no one else knew what I was saying. Bonus points later: when I finally went to France, I understood the graffiti. Russian is even better! There are GREAT curse words in Russian that sound and feel like all the good Anglo-Saxon four letters. Just think, Mia could grow up bi-lingual. :)

Posted by: lilymane at August 31, 2006 12:03 PM

The worst is when you get about halfway through a sentence and realize the payoff is going to be wildly innappropriate and you have to peter off into nonsense.

Eventually your daughter starts to think your an idiot because you never make sense.

Posted by: josh at August 31, 2006 12:41 PM

so, donkey balls is allowed, eh?
good to know. :)

Posted by: ali at August 31, 2006 12:56 PM

you are doing so much better than me. i have such a hard time watching my language around my son. He doesnt talk much, which makes me think i have more time...but i know he will suddenly be speaking in full sentences, and fuck and shit will be the top 2 words...i really need to take control of this and soon. but you are right, it is so less satisfying not to say the actual words.

Posted by: kristied at August 31, 2006 2:14 PM

We tried the modifying thing, eliminating all those words from our vocabularies. He just ended up learning them from one of the neighbor kids. Now I'm just trying to make sure he conjugates them all properly.

Posted by: candace at August 31, 2006 3:33 PM

LMAO! In our house we don't curse. Well we don't curse in the presence of children--ever. When he was younger he'd hear me on the phone and I would have whispered it too..."shit blah, blah damn..blah..." and he'd come running around the corner. Ohhhh mommy you said a bad word. Even at 8 the rules still apply.

You life is going to change in so many wonderful ways. LOL

Posted by: Michele at August 31, 2006 3:44 PM

Maybe that's our problem, we keep trying to come up with new words to stick in there and our girls think we're insane.

Posted by: Melissa at August 31, 2006 4:08 PM

Must be in a parent's dictionary somewhere... because, yes, we have followed in almost the exact same language patterns.

Posted by: Bethany at August 31, 2006 4:25 PM

That is too funny! I'm not sure of the age of Mia, but my geuss is you guys haven't started the spelling tricks, for example;

This is a true story that happened to my co-worker Involving her 4 year old daughter

Coworker: Paul(the husband), Quit it! You're being a D-I-N-K!
4 Year old Daughter: Mommy, that is not how you spell Daddy. It's D-A-D-D-Y!

I laugh as hard about that today as the first day I heard it!

Posted by: Nicole at August 31, 2006 5:00 PM

I held it together pretty well until the oldest ones were in middle school. Then one day I had a run-in with a man who was screaming obscenities at me for parking my car in front of his house. (It was NOT a "no parking" zone) Mommy "let fly" with the F-bomb and a few other choice morsels. The kids just stood there, mouths agape. Sorta blew my cover.

Posted by: wordgirl at August 31, 2006 5:34 PM

Yeah, raising kids is so ridiculously difficult. Damned SACRIFICES!

Posted by: Kristen at August 31, 2006 6:31 PM

Alternates for fuck that I use frequently: frick, frak, fudge, frig
Other than that, I don't think I could stop cussing. I'm pretty good around my cousins' kids but if I had my own I'd be in serious doo-doo. I've always had quite the sailor's mouth myself unfortunately.

Posted by: Beth in StL at August 31, 2006 7:12 PM

Thats hilarious, but should I feel insulted? Look at my internet name, you might recognize it as one of your bad word replacements!

Posted by: Dee at August 31, 2006 7:25 PM

Well at least she'll know some of the alphabet ahead of time.

My husband and I have found ourselves a lot less restrained as our kids have gotten older, and the words slip out. Usually though, I base my swearing on baking. Like - FUDGE! (Fuck) SUGAR! (Shit) DANISH! (Dammit) ...I'm thinking of adding SON OF A BEE HONEY! (Son of a bitch) to my vocabulary.

Posted by: Mary at August 31, 2006 7:57 PM

I don’t have kids, and thank God, because my vocabulary goes way beyond “Oh, stocking tops!” when I am angry.

Family folklore: My father, who rarely said anything more offensive than “Jumpin’ Jesus!” (devout Christians, please don’t take that personally), let fly with a good one when a careless driver ran a red light and forced him to come to a screeching halt with my two-year-old sister nearly puncturing the back seat. (This was in the pre-seatbelt days.) Anyway, my Dad figured she was still at the limited monosyllabic level and would never remember, much less repeat such words. The following Sunday, at a large family lunch with Grandma, a moment of sterling silence was puntured with a single outburst from my two-year-old sister: Goddamn-son-of-a-bitch!

Posted by: ortizzle at August 31, 2006 7:59 PM

Give and take right.....we spell things around here but now our kids are getting old enough that they can all figure us out.

Posted by: Dennis at August 31, 2006 9:26 PM

Yesterday in the car, my son called another driver a "Jackass." I asked him where he got that word from. He said, "You say it all time when you drive mommy." I didn't even realize it until then. But uh-huh. You've got a ways to go tho before she can pronoune her "f" so if she runs around the house saying, "Buckin' car" or "buckin' doll" you know you've got at least a few more months to pull it together. heehee.

Posted by: Lisa B at August 31, 2006 10:10 PM

Possibly you should consider an addendum to Webster's.

I had a 6-year old foster child a while back that almost got kicked off the school bus for her language. She knew more "bad words" than I did. I can't imagine what her parents were like. They could have benefitted by reading The New Effing Vocabulary

and they had 6 children!

Posted by: cassie-b at September 1, 2006 8:06 AM

Well I am french canadian...all our curse words are about church... I would have a hard time making up words since they are so long!
- Tabernacle
- Calice
- Sacrement

I am not even going to try. I'll keep cursing in english..the kids won't figure it out until they are 12 in the hallway of school... Ah that is what dad was saying to mom...
Have un 'esti' de good weekend!

Posted by: DavidR at September 1, 2006 12:26 PM

This is effing great!

Posted by: duane at September 1, 2006 12:34 PM

Oh, shit, I say ass all the time....I'll have to print this up as a cheat sheet.

Posted by: haley-o at September 1, 2006 1:52 PM

Shiz, at what point do my husband and I have to stop cursing? Because our baby's only 4 months old and love to watch "Entourage" with us. He loves the F word and it's sad. I think...

Posted by: Isabel at September 1, 2006 3:08 PM

Hoop and I are in for a world of trouble. I cuss like a sailor too. But at least I can curb it when I need to. He's one of those that only gets worse when he tries to stop.

"F'n idiot. Shit. I mean. Damn. I really AM trying not to cuss."

Posted by: Tink at September 1, 2006 5:09 PM

The alphabet takes on a whole new meaning:

C*** (I can't even type that one, sorry)

Now I know my Ass Bitch C***s, next time won't you sing with me?

Posted by: s@bd at September 1, 2006 8:18 PM

Oh (cuz the last comment didn't take up enough space), apparently you're still allowed to say 'damn'?
'Shit''s not okay but 'damn' is perfectly acceptable?

I like your logic.

Posted by: s@bd at September 1, 2006 8:19 PM

I'm printing this for my fridge as a reference. ;)

Posted by: Jaime at September 1, 2006 10:31 PM


Posted by: Chris at September 2, 2006 9:12 AM

I think you left out Pee -That really P's me off. P on him if he can't take a joke. Boy she was P'd. And what about the other B? You know, B*stard. Maybe Bustard rhymes Mustard and Custard?

btw, I can so see the parent teacher conference when Mia tells her pre-k teacher that the graham crackers taste like Donkey Balls.

Posted by: HR Mommy at September 4, 2006 11:17 AM

Great work!
[url=]My homepage[/url] | [url=]Cool site[/url]

Posted by: Tracy at September 4, 2006 3:04 PM

Thank you!
My homepage | Please visit

Posted by: Raymond at September 4, 2006 3:04 PM

Nice site! |

Posted by: Bruce at September 4, 2006 3:04 PM