Monday, November 20, 2006

(very) regional dialect

There is a four letter word in the 'shwa that is so heinous, so awful, so insulting that the most hardened criminals recoil at its ferocity.

Using it here is like calling someone the most heinous, vile, despicable word imagined. None of the most vile "yo momma" statements, or swear word combinations can match its level of insult. I'm sure fist fights, broken beer bottles, and serious injury have resulted when people used this word.

This is an interesting phenomenon, because it's unique to this area, and is pretty innocuous elsewhere, but has its own special meaning in the 'shwa.

The word?

Goof.

Add a "y" and you have a disney character, as in "don't be such a goof." Them's fighting words, especially in certain circles around here. Telling someone to "stop goofing around" is akin to wishing their hands will get chopped off and fed to ravenous wolves in their sleep, and getting an infection in the wake of it so bad that they wished they were dead. Goof. An innocuous word elsewhere has an entirely different meaning anywhere else.

Some police officers say that its sting is in homophobia here (ie it's implying you're more fond of the gents than the ladies, or are a pedophile) but others say it's just a swear word like any other.

Either way it's deeply entrenched here as a faux-pas word.

Any words like that where you're from?

5 comments:

Em said...

Wow - that's pretty full on. I don't of any word like that here.

megan said...

Baa Ha Ha,
I totally forgot from living in Oshawa! Some things never change.

Heather said...

em: It's totally weird to have to not use a word you're used to using innocuously.

Megan: So glad you can back me up on this one!

sunshine scribe said...

That totally cracks me up. And Is so so so true!

Heather said...

sunshine scribe: Thanks for the backup!