Saturday, July 18, 2009

Work In Progress

This is a really rough work that started because of a school assignment and we will see where it goes

That Is Definitely a Versatile Word

It has traditionally been one of the most taboo words in the American English language. There are countless variations and uses for the word, although until recently those uses have remained largely untapped. Once considered to be one of the most shocking swear words, the “F” word has recently begun to carve its own unique niche in American English. There is a famous scene in the 1999 Troy Duffy movie “The Boondock Saints” where the bumbling character Rocco gets rattled by his friends who have played a practical joke on him and he launches into this tirade:

“What did you do?! Fuckin'... what

the fuckin' fuck! Who the fuck, fucked

this fuckin'? fuck. How did you two

fuckin', fucks?......... FUCK!!!”

To which his friend replied, “That certainly illustrates the diversity of the word” (Duffy). This word transformed from a rarely spoken taboo word to one that was used over 260 times in the movie “The Big Lebowski.” This over-use of the word has allowed it to develop beyond being a mere exclamation into a noun, verb, adjective, and adverb. These different lexical items of the word “fuck” will be explored within this paper. Once each lexical use of the word is explained, it should, “certainly [illustrate] the diversity of the word.”

To get a firm grasp on the usage of the word as well as the connotations and ideas surrounding it. I pulled together ten friends from different realms of university life to form a panel to discuss the F-word. They asked that their names be withheld from the paper, but would allow their gender and words to be cited.

The first use of the word “fuck” refers to the actual act of copulation such as “I caught them fucking.” When asked what the word meant in the context of the phrase “I would like to fuck her” all of those interviewed agreed that the sentence expressed the desire of the speaker to have sex with the ambiguous her. One student offered the alternate, but unlikely, interpretation that the speaker’s desire was to bring strife into “her” life.

Although they all agreed that it was referring to the act of having sex, the deeper implications of that act were very diverse. One student (male) said that the connotations of the word in the context of that sentence implied an unabashed act that neither party felt ashamed of. He said that if the speaker had said “I would like to have sex with her” it would leave open the possibility of shame, but to fuck was to do so without shame. To call the act of sex “fucking” was to state it as bluntly and directly as possible. Once this idea was introduced to the panel of interviewees the idea was accepted as being true.

One of the females on the panel said that word communicated the idea of an absence of emotion in the act of sex. She contrasted the phrase “to make love” with the word and stated that two people cannot make love and fuck at the same time. Another female built of that idea by saying that it seemed like fucking would refer to a rougher form of sex and even a possibly degrading act.

Out of the ten members of the panel six said that they were uncomfortable using this word in that context, while the remaining members said they had little to no problem using it, if it applied. The consensus was that it was a direct and unabashed way to refer to possibly rough sex that was focused on external feelings and not internal connection.

The F-word has also become an adverb and adjective and more specifically an intensifier. If one was very tired then saying that they are fucking tired would effectively convey that message. The general consensus from the panel was that the, although diminished, forbidden nature of the word it brings a power that would be lost using another adjective. The word could be used in both negative and positive ways such as “This fucking sucks” or “that was fucking fun” and fits them both equally well. One of the male members on the panel introduced the idea that the word did gain extra meaning when used to express angry or bitterness “Such as I hate you so fucking much right now.” The panel was undecided as to whether the added force was due to the fact that the sentence itself was strongly worded or because of an association with the work “fuck” and its derivatives and anger. This connection was made earlier when discussing rough sex and was seen again in this lexical form.

This was the most common usage of the word excepting the reference to the actual act. It is a strong exclamation that can be used when one is surprised, angry, hurt, or disgusted. It is most appropriate and seems the most natural when referring to the speaker specifically. Most people would not use this word in the case of “ ______ that person is ugly” because it does not refer to the speaker specifically.

Overall the F-word is indeed an extremely versatile and strong word that communicates extreme disgust and displeasure, but has begun to grow and branch into a word that can have positive connotations. It is still a very taboo word, but its use has begun to become more acceptable and mainstream due to its overuse in theatrical media. A word that can be used in most any situation it is definitely a versatile word.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Harry Potter Review

There is always something magical about midnight premiers of blockbuster movies, and (forgive me for this) the magic was definitely in the air during the Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince premier last night. I am not sure if the magic should have been credited to the underdeveloped 17 year old in front of me who kept dabbing drying blood off his forehead. The blood originated from what appeared to be a pocketknife induced Potter-esqe lightening cut that seemed to have been carved moments before he filed into line. Another contributing factor to the electric and frenzied atmosphere that was present last night might have been the young lady who chose to arrive in a slutty Hogwarts uniform that gave her the likeness of a Hermione Granger whose crack cocaine addiction had forced her to start turning tricks in one of the darker corners of Diagon Alley or the sixty-one year old couple that were dressed in eerily accurate Dumbledore and McGonagall costumes. Whatever the cause, there was definitely an aura of excitement and anxiety in the pre-seating line.

I definitely fell subject to the anxiety of the night. With all of the subpar sequels and failed blockbusters that have popped up recently I was more that just a little scared that Harry Potter was going to go the way of the Transformers franchise. The opening scenes did little to settle me fears. I watched as the Death Eaters destroyed the Millennium Bridge and I had flashbacks of Michael Bay’s explosion-fest that was Transformers 2, but my fears were quickly assuaged as the movie settled in to the pace and tone that we have come to expect and love in the Potter series.

The visuals present in this installment were on par with the bar that was set by the Order of the Phoenix. I was somewhat disappointed that the director and screenplay writers decided to avoid a few scenes that would have led to some brilliant battle sequences. The fights that were included in the movie were done quite masterfully.

Overall I thought that the storyline got a bit distracted by the romantic comedy element of the movie. With all of the evil that was present at that time in Potter world, it seems that there should have been much less emphasis placed on the romantic elements of the movie, but it is what it is. Overall it was a great movie and a great lead in to what promises to be the best installment of the series in The Deathly Hallows.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Today has been rather slow. Most likely because of the immense anticipation of the newest film in the Harry Potter saga. Now, I know what your thinking " Harry Potter doesn't really sound like something that a hyper-masculine and devilishly good looking Viking would be interested in, but lets just be honest and say that the perception of Vikings as shallow misogynistic hedonists with little to show in the intellect department, is what has held my people back for years. We Vikings can enjoy a dive into the escapist fantasy world of books just as much as the next guy. We just look very intimidating while doing it. I hope that this movie will live up to the hype that is being attached to it. We will see. A review to follow.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

I have found that most of my writings never seem to make it to my blog page. After a short session of introspective searching I have found that cause of this to be my archaic belief that all things published (whether in print or digital media) need to be inspired and ground breaking. This however is not true and is actually counterproductive to the new socialist community that is Web 2.0 (or user driven media for those of you are not technology nerds like me). The idea that drives the new wave of technology is "cloud think". Cloud think refers the collective thoughts, ideas, writings, art, etc. that have been placed in open and accessible public internet forums that all them to be read and used by all who care to find them. Not everything that is published to the web is necessarily inspired or particularly good, but it serves a purpose in one way or another. The greater the cloud of collected thoughts and works the more that cloud can accomplish. Whether it be finding what is relevant to the masses for a advertising company or something as simple as providing a laugh and an escape the dull monotonous happenings of everyday life. Now that I have realized this truth I now make a pledge to do my part in building this new community. So hopefully I shall blog again soon.