Well, No-Go Zones seem to be the cool thing in Europe, but you see how not-so-well those have fared. I have idea: how about No-Curse Zones! Yes, and how about extending them everywhere!
Cursing is just so…..let me see…..uncivilized. It is for people who are sloppy and like to take the easy way in life. Cursing is so…easy isn’t it? Someone cuts you off on the road or is rude and it just makes you want to say “hey a—ho—e” or something like that. And it even feels good to do it. But only for that moment, then you feel a little diminished afterward. It’s similar to eating a big ice cream sundae which is so much easier than making a salad, tastes phenomenal, then afterward you feel like a brick.
So, here’s what I’ve decided to do in my own life: Disclaimer: I’ve cursed aplenty, even like a sailor, until a few years ago when I decided it just wasn’t cool. And that it didn’t honor God. While we’re at it, the worst of the worst cursing is using the name of the lord in vain: ‘God-this; Jesus-that’, etc. Just say no to that. Back to what I’ve decided to do: our home is a no-curse zone. I extend this to the areas I inhabit at work and in public as well.
Here’s how it usually goes: I’m in the grocery store in the meat section. Some Staten Island-looking guy (sorry) comes over, looks down at the packaged meat and says “Holy Ch—st, look at the price of that fu—ing steak, and it probably tastes like sh—t too”. He looks at me for a response and he gets one. “Friend”, say I, “you don’t have to buy it and also you don’t have to use such foul (or should I say ‘fowl’ since we’re still in the meat department!) language’. Whoa, the guy gets every one of his neck hairs standing on end and says “FREEDOM OF SPEECH, LADY!!!!” And storms off, until, that is, I manage to follow him and explain that I do not surrender my unalienable right to the pursuit of happiness as mentioned in the Declaration of Independence and that his language is definitely not making me happy at all. I doubt the argument would stand a chance legally, but the Staten Island-looking guy will not forget this encounter. Maybe he will think twice before doing it again?
Moving on to the workplace where I routinely withstand a professional veterinary employee, Catholic indeed, ‘Jesus Chri—ting” and ‘God dam—ing” every minute or so. As I am not an employee of this establishment (I provide volunteer, pro-bono specialty care to animals at the facility), I am unfamiliar with workplace policy and when asked, am told that cursing in non-public areas is allowed. Wow. Okay, here is the beauty of volunteering: when I go to this site, it becomes MY workplace and I now carry a sign on my bag that states “My Workplace is a Curse-Free Zone”. When Miss Catholic- potty- mouth begins one of her rants, I just cough and point to my sign. She is learning not to use these offensive phrases when I am around, but is no longer friendly to me. Oh well.
If you find cursing at home, at work and in public to be offensive, I encourage you to try these methods. Alternative ideas are gratefully received in the comments section below! Legally, of course, the First Amendment protects cursing, unless it can be proven to inflict injury or incite immediate breach of peace.
There are so many things in life beyond our control, but thankfully, we always have the ability to choose our words, whether spoken or written. With awareness, patience and practice, I encourage everyone to take the harder route of using civil language and enjoy the liberty it brings!