Only Words

Maybe because I am a writer but words don’t really bother me.

I should clarify that bad words don’t really bother me. Okay, most words don’t really bother me unless you are aiming hurtful expletives in my direction and then I may be a wee bit hurt, angry, pissed – or all three.

I recently had a conversation with a friend – actually a few friends – about the topic of bad words in music and movies and they both cringed and said they do not want their children listening to that kind of language. In fact, one friend researches the lyrics of songs before she determines if her kids (all mostly teens) can listen to them. Maybe I am just not as concerned about my kids hearing these words – most of which (with the exception of the one that begins with Mother) – I have said often and in front of them.

I’m sorry but have you sat outside a middle school lately?

Holy Hell, believe me these kids KNOW and USE all the colorful words on a regular basis and if your kid isn’t using them then by golly they are HEARING them.

So, I guess I’m not sure what the big mystery is? My kids listen to all the songs in their original format because I play CDs in my car. I personally don’t like the watered down radio station version.

Now, I will say that I would rather my kids not say these words in front of their mother – have a little respect – and hopefully they understand that dropping an F-Bomb in a job interview is probably not a great decision either.

I remember a birthday party for my then 12-year old daughter and a few of her friends. I rented the movie with Matt Damon about buying a zoo and after about forty minutes the girls all came to find me to tell me they turned the movie off. Why? I asked, confused. One girl (who probably has parents that won’t let them listen to bad language in music, sigh) said it had bad language. It does? I mean, seriously it is a PG-13 and we checked for inappropriate material, which it had none. I later found out the bad word in question was “damn”. What? Are you fucking kidding me? You can’t watch a movie because of one little damn in there? It’s a family movie about buying a damn zoo, for fuck’s sake. I think at the time I rolled my eyes.

My guess is these kids have heard the songs (and seen the movies) – bad language and all – and have heard and probably said a bad word now and again. Is it the end of the world? Will listening to Pink talk about her Shit Day and your Shit Day turn your kid into a foul mouth, pot-smoking, high school drop out? Doubtful. Will listening to Adam Levine complain about One More Fucking Love Song make your kids jump into bed with every, ahem, Tom, Dick, and Harry? (Or Tanya, Deanna, and Henrietta) – again, highly unlikely.

I mean, really, they are only words.


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