Saturday, April 27, 2013

Curse Like A Retiree

A few months back, Time magazine had one of those feature boxes that are quick and entertaining reads. It shared some choice curse phrases from Jason Sacher’s book How to Swear Around the World. You’d have to be a holy roller not to laugh at them. My three favorites translated thusly: “You are stupid as a broom” (contributed by the French), “A fart to your beard” (a Persian specialty), and perhaps the strangest one—from Finland—“May you piss into a transformer.”

You just know where this post is heading. IMHO, if you’re going to curse at someone, you might as well be colorful and creative about it. I’m providing an array of new phrases to help you insult fellow retirees. They can also be used to offend people who are not yet retired, but probably should be.

When I was in high school, this insult was going around: “Your mother wears combat boots.” Those in on the game would reply: “She does not. She wears Army surplus sneakers.” This inspired my first retiree curse. “Your walking shoes use counterfeit Velcro.” The savvy wearer will reply: “They do not. I’m beta testing a new and improved version.”

The second phrase is a variation on a foreign localism my brother picked up in the late sixties. After his Army discharge, he crossed Northern Africa in a Volkswagon camper. When he came home, he challenged opinions not to his liking by shouting: “May a thousand camels beat a path across your front yard.” This was followed by drumming his hands loudly on the table. In that spirit, I give you: “May a caravan of out-of-control Jazzy scooters tear a path through your vegetable garden.” Vroom! Vroom!

The Persians inspired this next one. “May the fart you laid turn out not to be a fart after all on the very day you ran out of Depends.” Think about that one… Or maybe don’t.

Here’s one that heaps insult upon injury. “Your grandchildren are so dumb, they don’t even know how ugly they are.” You may want to step back a few yards as you hurl that one.

“The Smithsonian requisitioned your earwax for their collections” is a good start. For maximum effect, follow up with “They’re displaying it next to the amber from Jurassic Park.”

Here are three especially tailored to retirees. “May your pension fund manager make Bernie Madoff look like a Boy Scout.” “May your Social Security payments get auto-deposited into someone else’s account.” “May your shredder short-circuit and destroy all your Medicare paperwork.”

Then there’s the Irish prayer turned insult: “May the road rise up to meet your face when you trip on your daily walk.” Or perhaps more accurately, may your face fall down to meet the road…

Of course, there are the more obvious insults that focus on physical characteristics. There’s Old Gnarly Toes and Gizzard Neck, and for someone who is peppered with liver spots, Domino Face. But they’re not really creative; they’re just mean. Try something more unusual, like: “Didn’t anyone tell you you’re supposed to eat prunes, not wear them?” Or one that’s more with the times, like: “Your face could crash the Skype network.”

It’s always good to tailor the curse to something specific about the person you’re aiming it at. “May you get arrested for flashing a plumber’s butt when the elastic in your Sansabelts gives way.”

Perhaps the worst curse I can imagine directed at me is: “May your chin bristles spread to your nostrils and your ears.” Not a pretty picture. But it’s way better than: “May a thousand camels piss into your cat’s litter box.”

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