This is the story about the first time I said my very first bad word.
Those of you who know me well know that I can be a bit of a potty mouth. (To clarify, being a potty mouth is in this case used as the [perhaps overwhelming] usage of bad/naughty words, and not as being a shit talker). I may choose to pepper in some ‘fuckings’ and such like words into my diction to really emphasize passion (i.e. fucking amazing). What can I say? I’m a passionate human being. I didn’t really realize how much of a potty mouth I was until it became increasingly difficult to have to censor myself in front of my fucking adorable and smart nephews. Words are just words, but I sure as shit don’t want to be blamed nor responsible for having my nephews and godson say such words. Although I don’t really use them to express negative emotions. (I cannot remember the last time I said “Fuck you” to someone, and my over usage of “go fuck yourself” yesterday was due to my singing along while playing and replaying Esthero’s fucking brilliantly amazing new track “You don’t get a song”.) After being around my nephews this past holiday weekend, I became very aware of how often I curse, in a non Harry Potter way (I’ve never read nor seen the movies, but that’s about wizards and witches putting curses and casting spells and stuff, right?)
Anyfuckinghoo, I started thinking about that first time I said that very first word. It went something like this….
*chimes and harp playing*
….oh, sorry, I really get into it when I play imaginary harp.
On a very sunny, yet chilly winter afternoon, in the small city of Bell California, my brother J and I were quietly enjoying a game of either Power Rangers, or Pogs, or whatever else we were into towards the end of 1993. Let’s see, doing the math I must’ve been 9, and my brother was 6 going on 7. My brother and I grew up pretty close. We enjoy a lot of the same things, and spent a lot of time together when we were kids. I would beat up his bullies, he would ask Dad for money for the both of use since he would not likely get said no to, being the baby boy and all…bastard! (But I’m not jealous or bitter, no. I promise.) Needless to say, bro and I were real close homies since we were little ones. Actually we’ve never been little ones. He is now 6’3” and I am 5’8”, so we were always tall ones. On this very afternoon, we had no idea things were about to get very interesting.
I do not exactly recall what exactly happened that afternoon to interrupt our game of (again, I’m not very sure) Power Rangers or Pogs or whatever, because it happened about 17 years ago. However, I do recall that it was a family matter. Some sudden event had forced my parents to start looking for a home elsewhere. My brother and I were not very thrilled to hear the news, since we had not been living in the current place for very long and we were conveniently close to friends and cousins. Immediately upon being told the news, bro and I marched to the back yard upset at what we had just learned. We walked the biggest tree in the yard that also happened to be placed the farthest from where our parents or older sisters were at the moment.
“What do you think about this?” my brother asked me looking for comfort, and assurance, and quite possibly a plan a la Disney kids movie.
There it was. The very simple question that started it all. I wasn’t thinking much other than ‘this is it. This is my chance. A real legitimate reason to use the F word I have heard so much about.’. After all, it was the only word I could think of that would suffice to describe what I felt about the situation. The real question was, if I was in fact about to say the word, would I be able to trust my brother? I had to think for a sec. Up until that point the only words that would slip out sometimes were “Estupido” and “Idiota” or their English equivalents, and they were quickly followed by a smack in the mouth by mom. It was clear she wasn’t down with us cussing. I could only imagine what any usage of “fuck” would do. If I choose to say it to my brother he’d have something juicy to blackmail me with later. (Blackmailing was something we learned from our oldest sister Betsy, haha). Could I trust that my brother? The boy whom I defend from bullies who would take advantage of his kindness? The one who ended up with me tied up on a pole in our backyard as punishment for getting money from my Dad’s van without asking (another story for later)? Yes. I felt like the answer was a clear yes. However, just to make sure I had to make it clear to him that I was trusting him with this and that he should not rat me out to mom, for I meant no harm.
“Don’t tell my mom but, and you know I don’t even say this word, and wouldn’t think of saying it again, but this is Fucking stupid” I said then burst into a giggle.
It felt strange to say it, but strange good. It felt fun and grown up-y. I felt as though I had just become an adult and things like Power Rangers and Pogs would be of no interest to me. I was now to concentrate on expressing how I felt about things using “fucking” and all the other words that I was sure were waiting for me. I know I had just promised my brother I wasn’t going to say it again, but who was I kidding. I have never stopped since. I knew it the moment the word came out of my mouth, and I think my brother knew it as well.
I quickly collected myself (surely, I was speaking like an adult now and adults don’t laugh after using adult words), and awaited my brother’s reaction. He giggled a little then said,
“Yeah, don’t tell mom, but this IS fucking stupid”.
*Gasp* He said it too! It was that moment when I realized just how close my brother and I were…and I also knew that from then on most usage of the bad words would be directed towards that little fucker. Ha!
In conclusion, I should not be blamed for corrupting my brother into saying bad words at the tender age of 6 going on 7, because it was clearly his fault that I said it since he asked me what I thought about the sitch. I would’ve just kept my feelings deep down, eat them for dinner, like I normally did during my childhood, but he just had to ask. I bet he just wanted an excuse so that he can say it. Yeah, that’s it. I’m sure that is it. I guess I can start by substituting words that are more pleasant to young ears, but it is real hard. Real fucking hard.