Clean swear words

Scott Adams has been making up his own cuss phrases. [Warning: coarse language]

I’ve been pondering what is the most abusive but non-swearing language one can use. The kind of thing you can say if, say, a car driver cuts you off or almost mows you down in a spectacularly stupid way, but your kids are present and you don’t want to be seen actually swearing.

There’s a number of Haddock-esque terms you could use, but so far I think the one I’m happiest with (and I know will spring to mind when needed) is moron.

  • Long-time readers of my blog/email list will recall Moron of the Week, which highlighted moronic car drivers.

By Daniel Bowen

Transport blogger / campaigner and spokesperson for the Public Transport Users Association / professional geek.
Bunurong land, Melbourne, Australia.
Opinions on this blog are all mine.

16 replies on “Clean swear words”

Yeah, “moron” is a good term when the kids are in the car.
Or yell “typical 4-wheel drive owner” (I use to say Volvo driver, but that seems to have changed).
And when you’re on your own, shout: “You f%*#-wit”.

Yeah, moron would work for me. Or I could swear in French, one of the benefits (?) of growing up in Quebec, and having french friends who taught us how to swear in French. Sacrement colis S–T! comes to mind. Or Sacre bleu! Anyhow, not exactly great ways to show our control, but yes, these things do happen. But… better to cuss under your breath, and take the guys plate number, and report it to the policeman than have a silly confrontation with the moron, as I did one day. Got out of hand wayyyyyy too quickly, and things could have gotten really ugly. Stupid move on my part to stop and yell at him. Ah well, will hopefully be better armed next time it happens. :)

The Japanese language doesn’t have many swearwords at all. There are terms which can be intense, but never reach the levels of English. The most common one – ‘baka’ (idiot) – tends to get more aggressive with speed, streess, intonation. I think the worst you can get here is saying to a local “Oh, I thought you were Chinese/Korean!” – now, that’ll get a reaction!

My father-in-law shouted at someone on a roadtrip last year. The wife and mother-in-law were quite shocked – the Japanese don’t tend to lose it in public. In any respect, my father-in-law didn’t swear at that time – it was the tone of his voice that surprised the passengers!

Not exactly clean but most people will think it clean if you say “Spear delay tea scurvy sin yeah!” or “Carver two for your match!” You should be careful, however, and not use it around anyone who speaks Polish as they will think the first is a suggestion regarding what they should do and the second is a claim regarding the professional status of their mother.

I’ve never sweared which I know is a bit odd (something to do with my genes I guess) but luckily I dont drive a car. However when something else gets me ‘angry’ I do get frustrated in trying to audilbly voice how I feel. I’ll try moron and see how it feels !

My language has perforce been cleaned up since having the kids. My most common expletives (in or out of the car) are “Jeepers Creepers!!”, “Darn”, and “Poopit.” My kids freely use all of these, along with my Mum’s “Heavens to Betsy”. Fortunately people think a 2-year-old dropping her ice-cream and noting, “Ah POOPIT! Jeepers Creepers!” is cute rather than off-putting.

For expressions of frustration:

Derogatory names:

And my favourite expression, taken from the movie “Dodgeball”

“YOU’RE ABOUT AS USEFUL AS A POOPY-FLAVOURED LOLLIPOP” (the original expletive wasn’t poopy, but a pseudonym for the male genatalia … just trying to keep it at clean as possible but I’m sure you can imagine)

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