Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Doling Out Mustard Wisely

As some of you know, I did not fall to the floor in sticky mirth while watching the bonafide hit movie The 40-Year Old Virgin. Aside from the fact that I don't find the idea of a 40-year old virgin particularly hilarious or mock-worthy, I was offended by the overuse of the f-word. I read that that word was used 68 times during the course of the movie. I think that's excessive.

I realize that I am in a teeny-tiny minority on this matter.

A particular blogging friend (who shall remain nameless, at least until she consents to being quoted) sent an email with this remark: "I was telling [my 16-year old son] about Mel not liking the word 'f*ck' and he said, 'Oh, she's one of thoooose' (hehehehe) then he went on to say, '"F*ck" is an enhancer, it's like adding mustard to a hot dog.' Well, there ya go."

And that sort of sums up my point. Would you put mustard on everything? Say you're at a fancy dinner party eating lobster and asparagus quiche . . . do you douse it with mustard? Say you're eating cookies with your three-year-old. Do you frost them with mustard?

Mustard on spaghetti?
Mustard on eggs?
Mustard on pudding?
Mustard in orange juice?
Mustard on shrimp-fried rice?

No. You do not.

I like mustard as much as the next girl. Occasionally, that is. I also use a thesaurus full of other condiments. (When my twins were toddlers, once they had ketchup for lunch. Just ketchup. I thought you'd like to know.) Why limit yourself to mustard when there is a whole wide world of sauces, condiments and flavorings?

Please, people, use your condiments wisely. Otherwise, the whole wide world will reek like a hot dog stand and we don't need that now, do we?


Anonymous beth said...

no! we most certainly do not!! not a big fan of the hot dog or much mustard!! point well spoken!!

2:58 PM  
Blogger Elizabeth said...

(cue God Bless America on 100 kazoos) I give my consent, proudly and without hesitation, to being quoted. Quote me at will and let the chips fall where they may for THIS is America, land of the free, home of baseball, HOT DOGS and apple pie.

Looky here?he didn't say it's like adding mustard to EVERYTHING. He said it's like adding mustard to a hot dog.

The film you saw was one big hot dog. It was one of the biggest hot dogs in all hot dog-dom, it was about a 40 year-old virgin for crying out loud, how much more hot dog can you get? You may not think that?s funny but lots of people do. Going to a movie about a 40 year-old virgin and being miffed about the language is like going a grocery store and going postal because there is a bread aisle.

Mel to manager: Excuse me! Excuse me! Do you see this?
Manager: Uh, yes.
Mel: What is this?
Manager: Um?it?s?um?bread, ma?am.
Mel: EXACTLY!! What is bread doing here?!
Manager: Well?er?this is a ?um ?grocery store? And we, uh, sell bread.
Manager: Uh?yeah?I guess.
Mel: PUT THE SIGN OF THE CROSS ON YOUR FACE!! (actually, that's what my grandmother would say being Irish Catholic and all) Do you have to carry ALL this kind of bread? Can't you just have ONE kind of bread instead of bread after bread after bread?! There are, like, 68 different kinds of bread here?!

There are plenty of movies you can attend where you won't hear the f word at all because there are no hot dogs to be found. I highly recommend Broken Flowers if you like artsy fartsy kind of movies (read: European).

And now I must prepare to put mustard on my home town baseball team that tends to turn into one big freakin' hot dog in the clutch.

3:49 PM  
Blogger Elizabeth said...

Ok...why is it that when I write my response in Word and paste it into your comments and look at the preview, everything is fine but when I post the comment there are ?s where other types of punctuation should be? What's up with that?

3:59 PM  
Blogger WordsRock said...

Elizabeth, it's because you put mustard on your hot dogs. Geez.


5:07 PM  
Blogger Paul said...

Interesting... I wrote about The F Shot on my blog just last week! [I like mustard, even use it sometimes... but ketchup is WAY better!]

5:27 PM  
Blogger Anvilcloud said...

I like the post, even if you did use a little literary licence re. E's son's comment. It was mustarding great, in fact.

5:55 PM  
Blogger Michelle said...

"mustarding" A!!!! You mustardin' rock! I loved this post. It's a great analogy! :)

7:43 PM  
Blogger ellipsis... said...

Oh. My.

Well, I do think it is ever so festive that we are all discussing one another on our respective blogs. Sort of like we have formed a collective consciousness.

So for what it's worth, I love the eff word. But as Mel does not, I refrain from effing in or around her blog. But she visits me in my blog-land and dos not lecture me about my effing.

By the by, everyone is welcome to come and eff all over my blog anytime.

PS--I effing love mustard. It's the effing best!

Now I must excuse myself to go gas up the car and board up the windows. Effing hurricane Wilma is heading our way. Eff.

9:01 PM  
Blogger Krisco said...

I love the condiment analogy. And also saying "mustard" instead.
It is sad when a sixteen year old thinks that word is an ennhancer. I am quite sure I was not allowed to say that word or anything close to that word at that age. Mustard!

10:58 PM  
Blogger Lone Ranger said...

You are not alone on this. My slogan is that profanity is ignorance made audible. Anyone who cannot express himself adequately without the use of profanity is either uneducated or uncouth. I refuse to even blogroll sites that use profanity. I have zero tolerance. Profanity desensitizes us and coarsens society, just as violence and pornography do. And isn't that one of the goals of liberalism? Since the 60s, they have been destroying societal norms and replacing them with nothing.

1:20 AM  
Blogger weese said...


4:08 AM  
Blogger Julana said...

WHo is that masked man? I like his comment.

7:08 AM  
Blogger Elizabeth said...

Thank you ellipsis! I like ketchup, but really Suzanne, mustard is so much better. Ketchup is so....common. Does a guy in a Rolls Royce say 'please pass the ketchup?' No, he does not. He says, 'please pass the Grey Poupon.' (make sure you pronounce it correctly.)

Lone watched South Park and liked it? Amazing. I see you liked it because they took a position you agreed with. You think that parents who allow their children to watch South Park should be locked away but you, Monseiur Hippo-crite, Monseiur Profanity-Is-Ignorance, enjoyed that little episode of that heathen, profane show. I guess the f-word is ok if it helps promote the right-wing agenda. Yes? Then it's not so uneducated? Oui?

But let me get this straight...

if profanity is ignorance and anyone who cannot express himself without it is uneducated...

then one can come to the conclusion that the episode of South Park you watched was created by the uneducated and...

if you liked it then one might come to the conclusion that you, sir, are uneducated.

People in glass houses are constantly forgetting to clean their windows. What's up with that?


Destroying societal norms since the mid-70s and mother of a son who likes mustard.

7:10 AM  
Blogger Julana said...

That is really funny. He has a blog called "Stop the REpublicans." I thought it was mostly Democrats who used the f word. (JUST KIDDING! Partly.)

7:10 AM  
Blogger Eyes said...

Do I just love this post!


Well said.

7:37 AM  
Anonymous mopsy said...

The "F" word is boring. I've never understood *adults* who mustard their language with "f-this" and "f-that". It is as ridiculous as a grown woman dressing like a Bratz doll.

The "F" word is like the Bartles and James Wine Cooler of language. Kids like it because it seems provocative. It's a way to rebel and taste great!

After awhile, you cringe when you think of all those teenage wine cooler moments. Adults who habitually curse are clinging to the wine coolers...when they should have linguistically moved on long ago.

8:30 AM  
Blogger Vashti said...

This was sooooo well put. I loved the exchange in the comments almost as much as the post. Excellent job, Mel! BTW...I do confess to using that word on occassion, but like a fine mustard, I don't slather it on your average spam and velveeta sandwich. I have found a few situations where I truly can't think of another word. Any alternative suggestions?

12:25 PM  
Blogger Reloaded said...

I quoth Spongebob Squarepants, Episode 35A "Sailor Mouth"

Patrick:Hmm... #$%%#! Uh, hey! I think I know what that word means. That's one of those sentence enhancers.

SpongeBob: Sentence enhancers?

Patrick: You use them when you want to talk fancy. You just sprinkle it on anything you say, and.. Wham-O! You've got yourself a spicy sentence sandwich!

SpongeBob: Oh, I get it! Here, let me try. Umm.. hello Patrick, what #$%#%$^ weather we're having, isn't it?

Patrick: Why, yes it is, SpongeBob. This $%#$^%& day is $%#%^&% lovely!

SpongeBob: How $%#%#%^ right you are, Patrick.

Patrick: %$#^$%#.
SpongeBob: %$%#%#%.
Patrick: %#$%^#$.

SpongeBob: You're right, Patrick, my lips are tingling from the spiciness of this conversation.

12:29 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What about God's standard? Does that matter to us?

1:44 PM  
Blogger Mel said...

Anonymous, what do you mean? And why are you anonymous?

2:12 PM  
Blogger WordsRock said...

I think God likes mustard. Isn't that why he intelligently designed it so we can spread it liberally on hot dogs?


7:23 PM  
Blogger Toni said...

Love your post, Mel. I totally agree!!!

8:40 PM  
Blogger Angi said...

I don't like the word, just because it seems juvenile, you know, reminds me of being a teenager and using the word to sound like an adult, not realizing at the time it just made me sound like what I was, a hormonally driven teenager.

I'm so lovin' the mustard analogy, really kewl.

5:42 AM  
Blogger Gina said...

Oh my. Just one day away and look what happens.

Well, I have definitely been known to use all kinds of mustard and ketchup. Grey Poupon, Heinz, all the varieties. Sometimes, in the heat of the moment, one just does not have the time to search the brain archives for the prefect word. Mentally deficient? Possibly.

I think adults can say whatever they wish, but I think if they are adult enough to cuss, they should be adult enough to know when it is appropriate. Which of course, is not all the time.

9:26 AM  
Blogger Diddy-Win said...

Just thought you would be interested in the actual number of f-bombs and other profanity in this movie:
(thanks to
At least 68 "f" words (2 used with "mother," 16 used sexually as are phrases such as "laid," "nail," "screw," "do it," "get it on" and "tap"), 29 "s" words, 19 slang terms using female genitals ("p*ssy," variations of that word and "poon," and "tw*t"), 15 using male ones ("d*ck," "c*ck," "c*cks*cker" and "pogo stick"), 4 slang terms for breasts (variation of "t*tty"), 17 asses (2 used with "hole"), 4 hells, 3 damns, 1 S.O.B., 15 uses of "Oh my God," 8 of "God," 4 of "Oh God," 3 of "My God," 2 each of "G-damn" and "Swear to God" and 1 use each of "For God's sakes" and "Oh Jesus Christ."

10:44 PM  

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