The other day, I happened to be listening to a young woman talk. She mentioned that her friend was so tired of “flippin’ waiting.” I suppose it’s possible that the friend was actually engaged in a series of gymnastic flips while she was waiting. That image briefly passed through my mind with a couple of mental chuckles.
However, it’s more likely a substitution for profanity. Someone more serious than myself might turn this into a lecture about avoiding the appearance of evil and suggest that all of us refrain from even these non-profane phrases of passion. Be that as it may, there’s no flippin’ way that I’m going to pass up a chance to poke fun at this crud.
How many of you use the word Fetch? Or Flip? Or Snap? How about Frigging, H-E-Double Hockey Sticks, or Holy Scrud? I’ll bet a large number of people who avoid the use of profanity still will say Dang, Heck, and Good Grief. My apologies go out to anyone who is offended by such language. (You should probably stop reading this.)
The problem is that these are obvious substitutions for the originals. And like the originals, they don’t really make sense. For example, “are you flipping kidding me?” would have to entail a person pulling a prank on the speaker by treating them like a stack of flap-jacks. Sure, it’d be funny—if the person who’s been flipped off didn’t break their neck in the process, but how realistic is it that you’re going to spend your time on slap-stick gags with a minimal chance for laughs.
What do you use instead? Most of the phrases that accurately represented your question will just make you sound like the straight-man in an old vaudeville routine. I don’t think “are you hilariously kidding me” is going to catch on. (Hmm . . . that might be a good line for a wacky character in one of my books.) Unless, by “flipping kidding” you meant “are you earnestly kidding me” and then the same argument applies. Neither of which deals with using one -ing word to describe another. In that case, “are you side-splitting kidding me” might be a good option.
Then we have, Snap. “Oh, snap” sounds as if you’re ordering someone to join in an impromptu jazz session. What exactly is it you’re trying to tell a person when you say that? Now, fortunately, I do have a suggestion for this phrase. Here it is . . . are you ready . . . I think you’ll like it . . . Exclamation! That’s right, just shout out the word “exclamation” as loud as you can next time you feel the need to express yourself. See if that doesn’t do the trick. And the best part of it is that it makes sense. I mean really, you’re using the word as a senseless exclamation to express emotion so why not clearly identify it as such. You can even add modifiers to the statement. “Oh, frustrated exclamation!” Or how about, “Exclamation of joy!”Fetch! I’m out of time. Sorry, I meant, “Exclamation of disappointment and dismay, I’m out of time.” Try these new phrases and then let me know how well they work for you.
Please, help me.As I have mentioned over the last couple of months, my purpose for the blog has changed from a place to connect with my fellow authors (which I still want to do) to a platform that will allow the general public a chance to glimpse at the insanity that is my imagination. To that end, if you enjoyed this post—spread the word. Follow my blog. Mention it to your friends. More importantly, like it on Facebook and post a link to it on Twitter or any of the other social network options.
And in case you think I’m directing this message to someone else, I am going to single out Mark Lindsay and ask him to copy the link in the address bar and post it on his Facebook wall along with a comment about how he enjoyed it—or didn’t enjoy it. The rest of you can expect to be tagged for the same request in the near future.