Friday, January 08, 2010

Is “shitcunt” the greatest expletive ever?

I should add a quick proviso of course: really I’m only talking about the English language.

Russian, for example, seems to have several thousand variations on the word “pizda”, including one which memorably appears to mean “small, bald pussy”. "Like a….child’s…… pussy?” I somewhat gingerly asked the fifteen year old Ukranian boy who was enumerating said variations to me one warm Summer day several years ago instead of learning English. “No, no, it is an adult pussy but without this hair”, he explained. I doubted such a word existed. He obligingly opened the window and beckoned over a couple of Russian girls who were standing on the steps outside the school. It seemed that but a single word issued forth, of which “pizda” was undoubtedly the root, followed by a flurry of slapping hands that he immediately slammed the window down on before sombrely turning back to me and shrugging, resembling in his heavy set, stoical, jocularly disappointed way nothing so much as a pubescent Leonid Brezhnev, “So you see, it is a really quite BAD word…."

Certainly his translation could have been suspect but I prefer to think that such a word exists, just as I choose to believe that the correct translation of the Korean “Jo to she pal seccy” or some variation thereon is the breathtakingly comedic combination of the graphic and the coy “peeled-cock sex-man”. And let’s not forget the ubiquity of “chingada”, raped female slave, in Mexican Spanish.

But still I think in any international competition, our own, home-grown “shitcunt” could more than hold its own. And after all, why can’t we nurture British talent a bit more, let’s be proud of our own heritage etc.

So, in what does “shitcunt’s” excellence reside? Why, to appropriate a term from lunatic, bird-faced, Child-of-God-molester Richard Dawkins has it become a “meme”, providing fast’n’unfreindly expletive solutions to an increasingly vast swathe of London’s underclass? Why has it beaten off other seemingly superior compounds: to wit “Fuckcunt”, “Cuntfuck”?

It has, I think, two main advantages over its nearest potential rivals.

First up, “Shitcunt” is mouth friendly in a way “Fuckcunt” just isn’t. Too much fiddly voiceless plosion in the middle, and while the final /k/ is often de-voiced in British English it can’t be here without loosing sense (fucunt), the transition in “uckcu” is too demanding on any speaker, let alone one who has just had two ribs broken by the heavily lumped-up bouncers of “Razumutaz” nightclub, Woolwich. “Cuntfuck” is easier, but still, nothing slides off the tongue like a “shitcunt”. The sibilant first phoneme allows for a long run up, picking up pace through the vowel and gently hurdling the glottalized /t/, arriving fully primed for the plosion of the /k/ and the long descent through the second vowel before the tongue comes deservedly to rest on the alveolar ridge with the /n/. Try it out at home now, sitting in front of your P.C., perhaps gazing at the faint image of your own face caught in the dusty, bevelled glass of the monitor! It almost seems to say itself. Indeed after a few cans of DachauBrew (12.5%, 8 cans for £5) from your local KostMasher UltraMiniexpressomart, you may find it hard to stop saying, so deliciously addictive is it.

Imagistically too, I think it would be fair to say, “shitcunt” has the upper hand. What is a fuckcunt? Too abstract for the mind’s eye to give shape to! Whereas “shitcunt” has an immediate moist and steamy materiality. Note that “shitcunt” is not of course “shitty-Cunt”, a faecally befouled, be-spattered/smeared/smirched but otherwise recognisably roseate and fleshily fulsome Fanny. No: this cunt is constituted entirely from cack, a great, dripping brown bowel of a bifta, a maculate and micturating minge of merde, whose prospective ripe, high fetor, whose distressing, gummy tactility to fingers or tongue, dizzies the mind.
You can keep your Young British Artists with their oh-so-obvious attempts at shock: have the Chapman brothers managed to come up with a single piece that worries away at the mind, yet produces such a delighted recognition of some essential kernel of Britishness, as the term “shitcunt”. You don’t need to go to any poncey galleries to witness this excremental efflorescence of the national psyche, it’s a piece of public art, just hang around any south London bus stop for long enough and it will be offered up to you, such is the largesse of the habitual Tenant’s Super drinker!

Young British Artists, anyway. I ask you. What a pack of mongrel shitcunts.


it said...

Owen swears that the woman in the Co-op just used 'shitcunt' affectionately to a shopper.

Anonymous said...

really? what as in...

Awwwright me old shitcunt, how's it going?

i'm tempted to start using

how the shitcunt are you?

and the inevitable reply

shitcunt be better, thanks