November 2006


I bring you the following essay by Albert Hammond

Sometimes when I am walking around the city a homeless person will talk to me. Usually they are very rude and I think “Maybe if you were not so very rude, you would be better at having jobs.” I do not say this though, because I am not rude.

First, maybe homeless people should not shout so much. I know they are outside, so it’s O.K. to use Outside Voices, but it can be very scary. It can be so scary it makes you yell a little bit.

Another good thing homeless people can do is practice oral hygiene. Teeth are important in your life. Maybe it doesn’t have much to do with being rude, bit it is a pretty good idea I think.

Also, I do not have any money. When you ask me for money, and I say I have no money, and you say “Bull Shit.” it gives me Bad Feelings.

Finally, it is very rude to pee in a building. Pee is actually pretty clean, but it smells real bad. Also it is PRIVATE. Also you should wash your hands.

So, you can see, many of the problems that homeless people have is because they are rude. Maybe we could have the man who played Mr. Belvedere come and teach classes on making good choices. He seems very tough, but is also a nice man. Also he is English.

Did you know that the words “faggot” and “fascist” come from the same root word? The latin fasces, meaning bundle of sticks. It’s not super important, but it’s pretty awesome.

I’m sure you’re familiar with euphemism, the practice of taking something that might be offensive and using different language to make the same concept seem less upsetting. For example: instead of poop, number two; instead of dick, manhood; instead of sex, making love; instead of black, African American*; instead of fat, big boned; instead of retarded, developmentally disabled. This process is kind of upsetting to me, since instead of using language to convey what we mean in an interesting and compelling fashion, hopefully one that brings with it some emotional impact, we are dressing up ideas that bother us and trying to hide them. I’m always bothered when language is used to obscure rather than illuminate.

NOW THEN:

Are you aware that there is a rarely referenced opposite of euphemism? It’s called dysphemism. It’s the practice of taking something that is not, in itself, upsetting, and finding a way with language to make it appear as such. I’ve been doing this for years without realizing there was a word for it. I ask all of you to join me in this practice. As examples, I’ve dysphemized a few things below:

Genesis

Chapter 1
1:1 First, Sky Daddy created the Sky and the earth.
1:2 And the earth was without form, and there wasn’t shit there; it was totally fucking dark upon the face of the deep. And Sky Daddy flew over the ocean. VROOOM!
1:3 And Sky Daddy said, Let there be light: and BAM, there was light.
1:4 And Sky Daddy saw the light, and was like “hell yeah”: and God divided the light from the darkness.
1:5 And Sky Daddy called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And the evening and the morning were the first day.
1:6 And Sky Daddy said, Let there be a sky, which one would have thought was covered when I created sky earlier, but it’s my first time doing this, lay off, in the midst of the waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters.
1:7 And Sky Daddy made the firmament, and divided the waters which were under the firmament from the waters which were above the firmament: and it was so.
1:8 And Sky Daddy called the firmament the Sky. And the evening and the morning were the second day.
1:9 And Sky Daddy said, Let the waters under the sky be gathered together unto one place, and let the dry land appear: and it was so.
1:10 And Sky Daddy called the dry land Earth; and the gathering together of the waters called he Seas: and Sky Daddy was like “fuck yes.”

The Great Gatsby

Chapter 1

When I was just a dumb fuckin’ kid, my pops told me some shit I still think about.

“Before you talk shit,” he told me, “remember what a pampered fucker you are, and how most mother fuckers out there ain’t got it so good.”

The Communist Manifesto

I. BOURGEOIS AND PROLETARIANS

Every God damn thing up till now is just poor people getting fucked by rich people, and trying to fuck them back.

Master and slave, boss and employee, teacher and student, you know, fucker and fuckee, always giving each other shit, all this time, sometimes on the street, sometimes all secret, and it always ends in either a big fuck revolution, or the poor folk getting dicked over even worse.

*Here’s a good time to complain about how people are assholes. Egypt is in Africa. A man who’s ancestry is Egyptian but who was born in the U.S. SHOULD be African America, but look at this guy:
Hosni Mubarak, President of Egypt
Does he look African to you? Well, he’s the President of Egypt. That’s pretty fucking African. The reason African American is so insulting to me is that it doesn’t actually MEAN American of African descent, it means BLACK. The only quality you’re looking for is skin color, and it’s absurd and racist to pretend anything else. Using language to disguise the fact that you’re separating people from one another by skin color is way more fucked up than just being direct and admitting that you’re describing someone based on the amount of Melanin their skin produces. Additionally, by creating a euphemism for “black” it clearly implies that “black” is bad. If referring to a person based on their skin is indeed bad (I’m not convinced it is) it’s extremely disingenuous to continue to do so by masking it with a phrase like African American