Thursday, February 17, 2011

Never Do Any Research

...using Urban Dictionary, at least.

The story: Today's post was going to be a quick "my confessions" category entry: "Instead of swearing when something goes wrong, I started to say "tssk." But now I saw the word "titch."" And that would have been that. More nonsensical than actually humorous or confessional, but they can't all be winners.

Then I looked up "titch" in the Urban Dictionary. For those unfamiliar, Urban Dictionary is an online dictionary specializing in pop culture slang. Each entry is user-contributed and first definition you see for a word is the one that is most often given a "thumbs up." So, conceptually, it's like Wikipedia with a rating function. In practice, what you get is a dictionary in which every entry means porn, or some variation thereof. As a cultural artifact and a collection of cultural artifacts, Urban Dictionary is fascinating in the way it utilizes the anonymity of the internet and the profane and socially unacceptable margins of language to form a database. As a tool I use, it makes me feel unclean.

The first definition of "titch" is "a small quantity or a "tisk-tisk" noise, which is fine. The next was ""a measuement; equivalent to the height of a tit/nipple." Now, I'm not sure what a measuement is, but if you're going to attempt to create a profanity substitute, saying "tit inch" in public is probably a step in the wrong direction. The next definition is worse: "little annoying person. especially a girl. Tiny + Bitch = Titch." I
1) I am vertically challenged myself, and have no business deriding others for a lack of upward growth.
2) I have, to my knowledge, never called anyone a bitch. All joking aside, it's not a very nice thing to call a person (and yes, there's a whole debate about why it should be derogatory for a human to be compared to an animal, and a gender debate on top of that, but it's all very long and very involved, and it's easier to just agree that it's not a very nice thing to call a person.) So to go from occasionally muttering "damn" under my breath to uttering the portmanteau of "tiny bitch" is once again a step in the wrong direction.

I need, clearly, a new swearword substitute. Maybe I should try that curseword on "Red Dwarf." What was it again? Smeg?
*A quick UD search later.*
Nope, not going to be using that. I need, clearly, to never use Urban Dictionary again.

Later Days.

2 comments:

Buzz said...

Just go the Fantastic Mr. Fox route and start replacing all your curse words with "cuss".

Starbuck said...

Join the fleet of Battlestar Galactica: "FRAK!"