The F Word

Jan Leeming

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Computers and the internet are amazing things. One of my concerns with putting together this site was that it could remain current, yet with all my travelling I've often much to say, but little time to say it. Years ago when reading the news it would take me days on end to reply to the kind letters people sent. Now, with the magic of the modern age, I can keep you up to date with what I'm doing and other events in my life.

The 'F' Word

Date: 14th December 2009


I had a very interesting experience on the train the other night.  I only had to go one station from Charing X to Waterloo East so was standing.  A  relatively well dressed young man - who I think had had a few too many beveridges - was hurrying people up and in to the train and constantly used the 'F' word.  At one stage he looked at me and apologised.  I suppose I should have kept my lip buttoned but there's been so much of it and I do find it offensive.  So I said he didn't need to apologize but that our language is one of the richest in the world and it grieved me to hear an obviously well educated young man using the 'F' word so frequently when he could have used so many other illustrative words.  He, like so many, was using 'F'  as an adjective.  ( My own son uses the word far too frequently.  We have a pact at the moment - if I read 'Feel the Fear and do it Anyway' he will cut down on his use of the 'F'word.  I'm keeping to my end of the bargain.)  The young man on the train and I  had quite an interesting chat for a few minutes in which he asked me why I found the word offensive and, apart from anything else, I told him that I objected to it being used as an adjective when our language offers so many other words - it actually shows a lack of verbal acuity.  When I got off, he fell into step next to me and chatted quite amicably - I think it was his way of apologising.

I'm not a prude and when pushed, I too have used the word but in its pejorative sense. 

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