It’s not useless cursing, it’s MATH, and it just may save your life.

I was reflecting on the things I’ve written in the last few days, including the pieces I’ve posted here, and noticed something.

I swear a lot.

I swear so much that when I linked both of my most recent posts on Facebook, I felt obligated to include a warning about the frequent usage of dirty words. And while I think most people can appreciate the artistic value of a well-placed “fuck,” I wondered why some days I felt especially drawn to that brand of artistry.

Then I realized: It all comes down to my mood. When I wrote my last few posts, I was feeling pretty cranky – still am, in fact. It’s been an off week. By contrast, when I wrote about finding Not-Lulu, I managed to get through more than 1100 words, with nothing more offensive than the marginally questionable “hell.” But I was in good spirits that night; as a general rule, animals make me happy.

So my cursing frequency directly correlates to my mood. This is actually very useful information, since it stands to reason that the more I swear in a given day, the greater the likelihood that some obnoxious, line-cutting bastard at the grocery store will get yelled at, or stabbed in the face with a pretzel rod, and I will appear on the 11 o’clock news.

In fact, I decided that this information is so useful, I ought to quantify it. This should be an outstandingly helpful tool for my husband, who will henceforth be able to mathematically determine the points of time in which he’s most likely to get lucky, and when it would be prudent to liquidate our emergency fund and hide the cash ahead of an imminent lawsuit.

In the process of developing the Fucking Moodometer (patent pending) formula, I determined that it was first necessary to develop a rating system for the most common curse words. There is a huge difference between “a hell of a day” and “a motherfucking shit day,” and the reliability of the formula depends on the accuracy of this vital input.

So I made a chart.

Curse Word Chart
(click to see full size)

Yes, I know, I know. Creating a chart like this is pure craziness: it’s crude and simple, a five year old could have done it, blah, blah, blah. But the Gantt chart got all wonky, so this is what you get.

I also know that some people will wonder about my assignment of “fuck” to the lowly Tier Jellyfish. Especially if you were born before 1968 or so, you might expect “fuck” to be Tier Angry Piranha material, perhaps even Tier Great White Going to Chomp Your Fucking Head (which, in that case, would be renamed Tier Great White Going to Chomp Your Damned Head, since naturally the name of each curse word tier must only use lower-level words, so as not to be presumptive). So here’s the explanation: If I got stung by a jellyfish, I would say “fuck.” I’d say it loudly, and probably in front of my kids, and I wouldn’t even feel bad about it. Because jellyfish stings fucking hurt. If this is shocking to you, then let’s consider it a mathematical discovery – before using the Fucking Moodometer formula, be sure to reassign “fuck” as appropriate. And in that case, you may want to call it the Stinky Moodometer formula instead. I firmly believe that a major advancement such as this should be as inclusive as possible, so please adjust as needed to suit your purposes. Because I am all about furthering the collective fucking intellect of mankind.

So. Let’s break down the Fucking Moodometer formula. It goes like this:

((Curse Word Chart Numerical Value) x (Curse Word Frequency)) + (Number of days since I’ve needed my Diva Cup) = Likelihood of being on 11 o’clock news (numerically represented)

Results Key

<40: Why are you using this formula right now? This is a perfectly normal day! Stop being such a damned baby.

41 – 60: I could really use some alone time, and maybe a bath later. But you’re still pretty safe.

61 – 75: Please leave me alone. I do not like people today. I’m calling you names in my head.

76 – 99: What. the hell. is your damage? Get out of my face or I will cut you.

100 – 130: Are you serious? You think I look cute? Cute? This is going to be a long goddamned day for you, asshole.


And that is the Fucking Moodometer formula.

You’re welcome.

10 Responses to “It’s not useless cursing, it’s MATH, and it just may save your life.”

  1. S. Brady

    Incredibly useful and utterly hilarious. I’ve never even considered using a pretzel rod as a weapon.

    • firstcityline

      I think you’d have to get just the right grip on a pretzel rod for it to be an effective weapon, otherwise it might just shatter. 😉

      Thanks so much for your comment!

  2. Life with Kaishon

    Your chart impresses me. And made me laugh : )
    I have been trying not to curse so much lately, but I feel like the summer is a little stressful with so many children about so I think the words more than normal. Darn it.

    • firstcityline

      Thanks for stopping by, and I’m glad the chart made you laugh!

      I’ve gotten better about keeping the profanity in my head over the years, but my kids have definitely heard their share of curse words coming from Mommy’s mouth. It doesn’t seem to matter much, they both still think “butt” and “fart” are the most gasp-worthy words ever – everything else is just uninteresting scenery!

  3. Sarah

    I curse far more at the office than I do at home, and it’s certainly less appropriate at work. I see potential for setting-based algorithms based off your formula.

    • firstcityline

      That is a brilliant idea. Weight more heavily for profanity at work or school, and even more heavily than that for libraries, churches and public monuments. Less in state parks, because of the whole “tree falling out of earshot” thing.

      Thanks for stopping by! Hope to see you here again.

  4. Cindy

    I was born pre-1968 (WAY pre, actually) and fuck has become my go-to word. Must be the frustration of living in Michigan and having a vagina. I’d probably score off the chart on any given day! Anyway, I am new to your blog and am loving it. Thanks for making me laugh.

    • firstcityline

      If my vagina was in Michigan right now, I’d be saying “fuck” a lot, too! I’m glad you’re enjoying the blog; thanks for your comment and I hope to see you here again. :)

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