HILF: History I'd Like to F**k

HILF 07: The F-Word, Part 2 with Ryan Ripple

Episode Summary

Guest Ryan Ripple returns for Part 2 of The F-Word - in which we go even further down the profanity alphabet to discuss the origin and uses of the S, P, C, and other F-Word. It's a damn good time.

Episode Notes

Dawn and Ryan continue their conversation (and open another bottle of wine) as they jump right back into the history of profanity, beginning with Ryan's favorite swear word, 'shit.'


00:03:30 - Dawn begins with the fun (but likely false) theory that the word 'shit' originated with the shipping of manure - and the necessity for it to be stamped with the instructions to Ship High In Transit.

00:06:50 - More likely the root of the english word 'shit' is from German/Ukranian roots: Scheisse and skei. Could it be the word comes from 'to cut off' - as in 'to pinch a loaf'. 

00:10:48 - Dawn discusses the journey from being an adult, accustomed to being very far removed from your own excrement and the excrement of others, to being a parent suddenly thrust tits-first back into shitsville. 

00:12:28 - The word 'shit' was considered so forbidden, it wasn't included in the dictionary until 1970. Up until (and after) that time, however, it was liberally written on toilet stalls in what has been coined 'Latrine Poetry'. 

00:13:46 - Dawn covers the 4 metaphorical uses of the word 'shit' as outlined by John McWhorter in the book Nine Nasty Words. 

00:21:34 - Dawn and Ryan discuss, with care and respect, the third tier of cursing: Slurs against groups of people. Dawn discusses the N-word (without saying it) and how it's modern use has changed and sharpened since the 1990's.



00:32:05 - The next slur we discuss is the other F-Word (derogatory term for a gay man). How did it go from being used casually in PG-rated 80's teen movies to being so hot it got Isiah Washington fired from Grey's Anatomy

00:37:57 - What does the other F-word mean? How did a 'bundle of sticks' and 'a cigarette' come to share the word? How are they related? 

00:41:00 - Most derogatory terms for gay men begin as belittling words for women or women's genitalia. The exception, is 'cocksucker' which from its inception has been leveraged almost exclusively against men. 

00:44:03 - Why does it sound strange when people don't swear? Adamant non-cursers like Ned Flanders and Mitt Romney also catch our ear's attention. 

00:46:48 - Speaking of women's genitalia: we discuss the nuanced difference in the use of Pussy and Cunt and how a one-syllable word that ends in a consonant will ultimately always win the profanity game. 

00:50:07 - We bid farewell to special guest Ryan Ripple and he also gives us his review of this fucking amazing journey.


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