Archive for the ‘Taboo language and slurs’ Category

Dreams of a flitter mouse

December 30, 2021

(The posting veers almost immediately into the world of sex between men, sometimes in very plain terms, so it’s not suitable for kids or the sexually modest.)

Today’s Wayno/Piraro Bizarro finds Batman on his therapist’s couch, reporting bat dreams — but who knows what flying and insect-eating really stand for in the dreams of a flitter mouse?


(#1) Gm. Fledermaus (literally ‘flitter mouse’) and similarly in other Germanic languages, including, according to OED2, in English cites of flittermouse, flitter-mouse, flutter-mouse, and flitter mouse from 1547 through 1872 (If you’re puzzled by the odd symbols in the cartoon — Dan Piraro says there are 7 in this strip — see this Page.)

Clearly, we have to understand both flying and eating insects as dream substitutes, screening Batman’s true anxieties: his shame about being gay (concealed by a veneer of macho posturing); his constant fear that his secret life as a famously effeminate enthusiast of fellating other men in the sexual underworld of Gotham City will be exposed; and his deep regret for years of being in sexual thrall to his younger, dominant, and more masculine lover, Robin the Boy Wonder (“I wish I knew how to quit you”, he sobs in dismay).

(more…)

Eating like a Pygmalion

December 28, 2021

… Wayno’s portmanteauing title for yesterday’s (12/27) Wayno/Piraro Bizarro:


(#1) A play on Shaw / slaw (If you’re puzzled by the odd symbols in the cartoon — Dan Piraro says there are 4 in this strip — see this Page.)

Three things: one, plays on the Shaw of George Bernard Shaw (plenty of room for silliness here); two, on the wonders of (cole) slaw; and three, a note on the exclamation by George (which of course has nothing to do with GBS, but also nothing to with kings of Great Britain, since George I (from Hanover) didn’t ascent to the throne until 1714, while exclamations calling on a George go back at least to 1616).

(more…)

The bell of the ball

December 21, 2021

E-mail from a friend I’ll call J, reporting on exchanges on an (unidentified) web site about the photo below, of a carefully printed note on what was said to be a badly parked car (with a Jesus Disciple sticker on it), crucially in the UK (US participants would have been just baffled by the note, in which bellend is used as a crude stinging insult; the rough American affective equivalent would have been asshole — but that’s anus-based rather than penis-based):


(#1) The website exchanges were all about bellend — which first came into widespread use in BrE about 25 years ago in the sense ‘glans penis, dickhead’ and immediately extended to a generic male-insult use (as above) — but which is virtually unknown in AmE; the lexical item has now been scrupulously described in OED3, but the photo above (from a Mirror (UK) story on 11/5/21) is of extremely dubious provenance

(more…)

The photoon from Satilla Shores

December 9, 2021

On Facebook on 11/23, Charlie Fulton offered this photoon — a photograph intended as a cartoon — and provided it with a caption, in this case a brief text expressing a personal opinion of his about some event, not depicted in the photoon, without any explicit connection between the event and the photograph. So Charlie’s captioned photoon takes a ton of context and background knowledge to appreciate, but (in my opinion) it’s very cleverly bitter (measured bitterness being a CF specialty).

The photoon, with Charlie’s caption:


(#1) [CF:] Ah, the clever “toenail defense” tactic. I should have seen it coming.

The only really easy part of the comprehension exercise is recognizing the objects in #1 as the edible seeds — known in English as Brazil nuts — of the Bertholletia excelsa tree  (native to South America).

(more…)

Pissing and moaning with Ed Koren

November 24, 2021

From the 2018 cartoon collection Koren in the Wild (my copy of which arrived today), this New Yorker cartoon (published in the magazine on 9/6/99):


Working-class masculinity — the bar, pissing and moaning — meets the intellectual — verify what you’re saying with data: who verifies their pissing and moaning with data?

Then there’s the slang idiom to piss and moan.

(more…)

Dirty words and dirty briefs

November 11, 2021

(Yes, as the title should tell you, this posting is not for kids or the sexually modest. It would be entirely unacceptable to Facebook, which is why I don’t link to it on Facebook, but merely tell my readers there where on my blog — this blog — they can find this posting.)

Originally this was supposed to be one of my brief postings, or briefs, in this case about some dirty talk; but then the idea of dirty briefs led me on in further directions in the garment world: to men’s briefs with dirty talk on them, and to wordless underwear that is dirty with the effluvia of the wearer’s body. It’s all one big tangle of senses of dirty and senses of brief. (However: no legal briefs were soiled, or even touched (upon), in the preparation of this posting.)

(more…)

Stick to your own kind

September 13, 2021

(There are passages in the middle of this of extraordinarily crude obscenity, which should be exposed and reviled, not hidden away. I offer this warning, but no apology.)

Over rice pudding (that characteristic, iconic dish of American roadside eateries), a confrontation between Zippy the Pinhead and a Roundhead enforcer of law and order, a mysterious Masked Man attired all in white (someone much resembling the Lone Ranger, defender of American goodness, power, and purity), over Zippy’s citizenship status and his freedom of action — a confrontation set in the Village Diner in a mythical Wild West (an establishment much resembling a diner of that name in Millerton NY):


(#1) The standoff at the Village Diner

Claim A

ZP: Pinheads are Wild West citizens, free to move about the territory as they wish.

MM: Not at all. Pinheads are alien interlopers, who must be interned in camps we call circuses, with their own kind, in locations reserved for them, away from real citizens.

Claim B

ZP: Some Pinheads are clever and wise, some are silly, ornamental, and entertaining, but they are all harmless. In any case, Pinheads are entitled to dress and act as they wish (within reasonable limits set by fair and just laws).

MM: Not on the street in front of respectable citizens, they aren’t. They’re deranged, dirty, and dangerous — scarcely distinguishable from wild animals. My duty as the protector of American values is to rope them up and drag them to the camps. In fact, I would prefer to shoot the hell out of the sonsofbitches, but current bleeding-heart laws tie my hands and prevent me from giving them the punishment they deserve.

(more…)

Dim views

August 14, 2021

It starts with this Nat Rodgers composition, given to me by my little family because it features a penguin (one of my totem animals) along with text:


(#1) A penguin who takes a dim view of those who look down on others, and suggests an aggressive counter-measure

Rodgers does artwork in a number of series, on several wildly different themes. The theme here is vexation — the dim views — and its response, typically either aggressive or contemptuous.

(more…)

Buzzcut 4: books and epithets

July 30, 2021

The last in the series of pairings of my new buzzcut with impudent gay t-shirts new to my wardrobe (earlier: BIG FAG on a pink shirt, rainbow FAGGOT in block letters, and, yesterday, a rainbow tyrannosaurus):


(#1) Posed in front of part of the Zwicky GSU (Grammar, Style, & Usage) collection, now housed in my condo, where the piano used to be, and supported by my indoor walker (which sports new purple walker balls, not illustrated here)

The t-shirt is a new version — bigger, bolder, more intense — than my first GAY AS FUCK shirt, below, which has worn over time until the colors are muted and delicate and the fabric is pleasantly soft. I see fatal holes in its near future.


(#2) Catalogue photo, not of me. With an (entertaining) asterisking strategy for taboo avoidance, unlike the flat-out FUCK of #1

(more…)

Today’s garment faggotry

July 28, 2021

Yesterday’s posting — “Big Fag in a buzzcut” — had a photo both impromptu and soulful, plus that cheeky, rather unsettling slogan. Today’s photo is posed and more magisterial (though still amiable), and the slogan is the plain rainbow “Faggot”:


(#1) “I am Professor Faggot and I’m a hell of a lot queerer than you imagined, so put aside your contempt, listen up, and I’ll guide you through things” (photo by Kim Darnell)

Below the fold, some material that’s not appropriate for kids or the sexually modest.

(more…)