The C word.

No one asked, but I have a policy on use of what I’ll call here the C-word, not because I think it’s so terrible but because some of you read this page at work, and have informed me that your company’s firewalls may screen out certain profanity. Normally, I don’t mind coming right out and saying it, at least in appropriate company. But I’ll refrain.

So. I have a policy. It’s this:

** Men may not casually use the word to refer to women, although I grant exceptions in certain cases. For friends. Best not to drop C-bombs in my presence unless we know one another pretty well. In this, it’s sort of like the N-word policy that I hope most readers follow: Just because black folks use this word doesn’t mean white folks can. Again, some exceptions may apply, but when in doubt, don’t say it. It’s just one of those things.

** Personally, I will use the C-word only to describe a certain sort of woman, who actively works to the detriment of other women. In this category: Phyllis Schlafly; Laura Schlessinger; most of the female op-ed writers of the 1990s who opined that women with small children who continued to work “outside the home” were selfish and only doing it so they could buy Mercedes-Benzes and get a manicure every week; actresses who said the casting couch is no big deal; others. You get the idea. In the case of Ivanka, Barbara Ehrenreich appears to be following a version of this rule:

** In English-speaking Europe and in Australia, the word is an insult used on men as well as women. “Game of Thrones” viewers have probably heard it used this way, because the producers of that show are employing the old tradition of Creating New Worlds, which the show’s setting, Westeros, decidedly is: When in doubt, use British accents. And so when the Hound tells somebody he’s going to “shut your c*nt mouth,” and he’s talking to a man, that’s in line with the tradition. And speaking of high-budget HBO dramas, Marc Antony in the production of “Rome” some years back, had a swear that I always enjoyed: “On Juno’s c*nt!” So that’s OK.

Otherwise, I respect the word’s power, so I try to deploy it selectively, and only on the truly deserving.

Anyway, it wasn’t until I read my ink-on-paper Detroit News wire story that I heard the better line from Samantha Bee’s tirade, wherein she told the First Daughter, “Put on something tight and low-cut, and tell him to f*cking stop it!” Which made me laugh.

So now you’ve got it.

I expect the story of the weekend is the 20-page memo the president’s lawyers delivered to Robert Mueller in January. Of this I have nothing to say publicly. I think I heard someone on a podcast recently say they were “out of shock juice” for commenting on day-to-day outrages, and were instead fixing their gaze on November. That seems a sane strategy to follow. Also, I have a bad case of scintillating scotoma at the moment, a nuisance affliction that was hitting me twice a week a couple years ago, then went away entirely, and recently returned. I’m taking it as permission to close the laptop and take Wendy for a walk. You all enjoy your Sunday and start of the work week. I’m out.

Posted at 1:05 pm in Current events |

31 responses to “The C word.”

  1. Ivor The Engine Driver said on June 3, 2018 at 1:21 pm

    For usage rules concerning potentially controversial words, I defer to the Rude Pundit. He routinely gives voice to my frustration, contempt and rage — which is becoming ragier with each passing nightmarish day — at the state of affairs in the Republic. So if he sez I’m good to go, I go.

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  2. Deborah said on June 3, 2018 at 2:56 pm

    I get those scintillating sactomas too. A few months ago (Jan/Feb) for about 2 weeks I got one about every other day. Haven’t had any since. Sometimes they are the beginnings of migraines (auras) they last 10 to 20 mins, starting out as small dots then engulf most of my field of vision. Then they recede to a dot. Before that 2 week series of them, I only got about 1 a year starting maybe 10 or 12 years ago. My dr has no idea why I get them but they’re not uncommon apparently.

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  3. Julie Robinson said on June 3, 2018 at 3:15 pm

    Scintillating scotoma was a new term to me, but once I looked it up I understood perfectly, since my hubby gets them. He has to go in a completely dark and quiet room and lay perfectly still. Anything else brings on the pukes. If he is lucky he can avoid the migraine that follows, though those mostly went away when he changed jobs.

    I have been only vaguely following the news while on vacation, and this has been good for me. We had a potluck after church and met some new people, and invited them over to pick some veggies from our garden. That WAS good for me.

    Yesterday the guy that planted and is tending our front yard garden had a gardening class here and about 30 people showed up, hungry to learn to reclaim the skills of former generations. It was truly gratifying. If anyone is curious about the project, here’s his page, along with a picture of our garden: He’s slightly crazy in a good way.

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  4. Mark P said on June 3, 2018 at 4:20 pm

    I had never heard of scintillating scotoma either, but I have them occasionally. They are very annoying. I have always associated them with migraines, although for the last few years I don’t get the headache. I do sometimes get a hangover from the non-headache.

    I learned only recently that c*** is used as an insulting term for men as well as women. I do not recall hearing d*** used for women. Dick has been used for many years; I remember seeing cartoons of Lyndon Johnson with him drawn as a penis. I wonder why the slang terms for human genitalia are used as insults. Probably something to do with them being naughty.

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  5. susan said on June 3, 2018 at 5:02 pm

    mark p, my dad had this poster hanging in his office since the ’70s. He despised and mocked Jacques Chirac. Weird, because he was not particularly a Francophile, although he did have a dear friend who was Parisian. He did also despise conservative incompetents, though.

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  6. beb said on June 3, 2018 at 5:51 pm

    An interesting question — if you’ve been pardoned of some indictment and are called to testify about the thing you were pardoned for in a case involving someone else can you still invoke the 5th amendment? I would assume not because how can you incriminate yourself when you’ve already absolved of the crime. On the other hand if you lie in your answer that would be perjury, a new crime. So if Trump pardons, say, Cohen doesn’t that mean Cohen will have to answer truthfully about e-v-e-r-y-t-h-i-n-g? That doesn’t sound like s good deal for Trump.

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  7. David C. said on June 3, 2018 at 6:48 pm

    Beb, if you are pardoned, you can be compelled to testify and your 5th Amendment rights go out the window. So, as I understand it, your scenario is exactly right.

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  8. basset said on June 3, 2018 at 8:31 pm

    Aaaand we’re back, Mrs. B and I, from a trip to the Michigan north woods. Managed to avoid the worshipful pro-Trump billboard on 115 near Cadillac, if indeed it’s even still there.

    Hardly listened to any music on the drive, it’s about 11 hours each way and that’s rare for us. NPR, one long Dave Ramsey session switching stations from just below South Bend almost to Grand Rapids, lots of podcasts… the Guardian’s “long reads,” the BBC’s “Why Factor,” Nashville Public Radio’s “Curious Nashville,” didn’t get to “Sound Opinions.”

    Had already heard the “Cocaine and Rhinestones” programs before we went, will mention them here again just because they’re so well-researched and interesting.

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  9. Deborah said on June 3, 2018 at 8:32 pm

    I realize I misspelled scotoma. Embarrassing.

    I’m reading Lincoln in the Bardo, I think some of you have mentioned it previously. I’m finding it remarkable. I read The Tenth of December also by Saunders a couple of years ago. I found those stories remarkable too. It’s hard for me to come up with another word besides remarkable for his writing because I’ve never before encountered anything like it. I’m very much enjoying the Bardo book even though it is quite sad in parts.

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  10. alex said on June 3, 2018 at 11:02 pm

    Samantha Bee and the Big C–

    She can say it all she wants and it won’t offend me.

    My 56-year-old body doesn’t find anything scintillating anymore.

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  11. Dexter Friend said on June 4, 2018 at 3:51 am

    Jim Jeffries calls everybody and sometimes it seems everything a cunt. He’s Australian, one of the funniest guys in the world, and on the same network as Sam Bee was, I think…Comedy Central. So yeah, I was confused when Sam got in trouble. I reckon it was only because it was that cunt adviser to the President that got called a feckless cunt. Next time you see The Jim Jeffries Show (it’s 30 minutes) , count the cunt-word references. A bunch, I betcha.)
    All her aware life, our daughter Sandi has wanted to marry a jet pilot and live in Florida. She married the pilot 5 years ago, in Florida, and in 4 hours she is leaving Ohio, most likely forever, and moving to a house near Miami. It took her ’til age 47 to do it, but by tomorrow she will be an official resident of Florida. Now that’s a long-ass haul, and in a Kia Sorento with man and two big Weimaraner doggies in tow. Bon voyage, daughter….

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  12. Dorothy said on June 4, 2018 at 7:28 am

    My niece recently had an article published on webmd’s website related to migraine disease. She has written many articles as The Migraine Girl. I’ve never had one, for which I’m very grateful. For those of you who do, my sympathies. I’m aware of how debilitating they can be. I had a coworker at Kenyon who missed a lot of work time due to having frequent migraines.

    Janet is my niece who owns the Avid Bookshops in Athens GA.

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  13. Jolene said on June 4, 2018 at 8:17 am

    All her aware life, our daughter Sandi has wanted to marry a jet pilot and live in Florida.

    This is such a specific aspiration! I don’t think I’ve ever heard anyone express their hopes for romance or matrimony in quite this way.

    The preference for Florida is not so hard to understand, but do you know what it was that made her want to marry a pilot?

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  14. Joe Kobiela said on June 4, 2018 at 9:02 am

    Because he is a PILOT, who wouldn’t want that? lol.
    Pilot Joe

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  15. Icarus said on June 4, 2018 at 10:14 am

    not just a pilot but a Jet Pilot!

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  16. Julie Robinson said on June 4, 2018 at 10:47 am

    basset, that sounds like a great trip. Did you avoid mosquitoes? As much as I love storytelling, and listening to audio books, I’ve never gotten into podcasts. Folks keep posting such interesting stuff, though, I need to change that.

    When I woke up this morning I was informed we were going to the beach. So we’re on our way. Monday is Pastor Sarah’s day off.

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  17. Sherri said on June 4, 2018 at 10:53 am

    I used to get the scotoma about a half hour before the pain of the migraine hit, but then my migraines changed in my late 30s, so much so that I thought I was dealing with a chronic sinus infection rather than a migraine. The scotoma stopped happening, and the ice pick location moved from my forehead to my cheekbone. My sinuses would feel congested too. Finally a doctor, not my usual doctor, suggested that this could be migraines rather than sinus infection, and had me try Imitrex. It was like a miracle drug.

    Then as I hit my late forties, my migraines increased in frequency, though not intensity, and I was having to use Imitrex too often, so I saw a neurologist. We’ve tried various things, but Topamax has been the most effective at reducing the frequency from 1-2 a week to 1 every 6-8 weeks. Topamax itself makes me struggle a bit with wordfinding sometimes, but that’s livable.

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  18. Bitter Scribe said on June 4, 2018 at 11:25 am

    For all the umbrage-takers on the right, who are following their tiresome playbook of “if we can’t excuse A, point to B”:

    –Roseanne Barr, a person who is not black, called a black woman an ape.
    –Samantha Bee, a person who is a woman, called another woman a cunt.

    Are you seeing a certain asymmetry between these two things?

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  19. basset said on June 4, 2018 at 11:36 am

    Julie, the mosquitoes weren’t too bad but the deer flies were just awful where we were staying at Caberfae, couldn’t even sit outside in the evenings.

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  20. Jakash said on June 4, 2018 at 11:44 am

    “Imagine if ‘religious freedom’ people cared as much about the rights of Muslim people as they do about the rights of Christian cakes.”

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  21. Little Bird said on June 4, 2018 at 11:54 am

    I can suggest a good quality sleep mask for when those Scotomas occur. Specifically Bucky brand 40Blinks. It looks like a tiny bra, because it’s domed over the eyes (to allow for R.E.M.) but oh my god does it help! I get migraines about once a month, and occasionally more often. The masks can be found at Bed Bath & Beyond.

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  22. Jeff Borden said on June 4, 2018 at 12:33 pm

    “L’estat, c’est moi.”

    Even as the sack of melting Creamsicle was running, I believed he did not want to be president, but king. And it looks like most Republicans are cool with that idea if polls are correct. Man, I wonder what those tea bagger types would’ve done during the previous administration if President Blacky von Blackenstein had claimed the same privilege as the Orange King? Unimaginable.

    Re: Samantha Bee. The unctuous Ted Nugent has frequently declared Hillary Clinton as a “cunt.” He also referred to President Obama as a “subhuman mongrel.” Oh, he also wished Hillary would suck his machine gun and fantasized about killing our first black president. His punishment? An invitation to the White House with his Motown asshole buddy, Kid Rock. So, fuck all the sensitive souls on the right. Shut your pie holes.

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  23. Scout said on June 4, 2018 at 1:56 pm

    I don’t really care where Mel is, but I did have some fun with photoshop.

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  24. Snarkworth said on June 4, 2018 at 3:14 pm

    Just got back from Iowa attending my Grinnell College reunion. It was enjoyable and stimulating, but we’re definitely slowing down. My favorite line (describing the big open-bar bash our class had Friday night): “They ran out of water!”

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  25. Dexter Friend said on June 4, 2018 at 4:48 pm

    Jolene, we thought she was going to marry her cable-guy dude. He was a fine gentleman who showered her with dutiful affection and paid attention to her son…but…he wasn’t a pilot, so, bye-bye. She has always been mesmerized by Florida and went every chance she had, by car or plane. Why a pilot, specifically a jet pilot? Well, guess…got it yet? Because she was a teen when “Top Gun” was released. When that was released to VCR, she played it over and over, in love with Tom Cruise. For the past two years, it’s been a strain as she remained in Toledo trying to sell the house while her husband was living in a rented half-house near Miami Executive Airport from where he flies. Now a big nearly half-million dollar home awaits them along with a job for hubby up a couple notches in pay grade. Life is gonna be sweet now…house sold for max-price, out of Toledo for good, life is sweet indeed. Oh…I warned her about those alligators and pythons, like all goods dads would. 🙂

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  26. Deborah said on June 4, 2018 at 7:10 pm

    Alligators, pythons and hurricanes, don’t forget to warn her about hurricanes.

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  27. Ivor The Engine Driver said on June 4, 2018 at 8:03 pm

    Meanwhile, back on Bizarro Earth, President Bigger Cunt Than His Daughter Could Ever Fear To Be has uninvited the Philly Eagles to the White House. Not enough real `Murricans on the squad, I believe.

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  28. brian stouder said on June 4, 2018 at 9:56 pm

    Scout (at 23) – that was the best laugh I’ve had all day!

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  29. Dexter Friend said on June 5, 2018 at 2:19 am

    The African American members of the Philadelphia Eagles refused to go to see Trump so the White House event planners ixnayed the traditional ceremony for the champs of football. I guess some of the whites said they would go, but anyway, it’s off.
    Did you hear Giuliani? He said Trump could have shot Comey then pardoned himself or some such nonsense. Trump hears the demons calling, deep inside his head. He says he can pardon himself, but why worry, as he has done nothing wrong. Well, in my opinion, he’s already in deep shit for obstructing justice about 17 fucking ways, and he’s concocted this plan to pardon himself. ANd then immediately be impeached, and then skate out of his presidency.
    Jeezuss…how’d ya like to have been Huckleberry Sanders Monday? She said “…but the President has done nothing wrong…” over and over again. One day soon that Big Eye of hers is gonna pop out of her head and roll away.

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  30. Suzanne said on June 5, 2018 at 8:58 am

    Gee, and didn’t Lyin’ Ted tell us all he was a constitutional scholar?

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  31. Joe Kobiela said on June 5, 2018 at 8:33 pm

    Just taking a minute to remember the brave troopers from the 101st and 82nd airborne, that jumped into that dark night into Normandy and paved the way for the rest to follow 74 years ago tonight.
    Pilot Joe

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