This week's Pretzel Logic takes a raunchy review of some recent news stories that relate to less than lovely language. If you are easily offended, sorry, you're shit out of luck.
The Silly Queynte – Part One
Last month the president of the University of Colorado, Betsy Hoffman refused to condemn a university football player who described a female team member as a 'cunt.' A university spokeswoman told the media 'Because she is a medieval scholar, she is also aware of the long history of the word dating back to at least Chaucer.'
The Silly Queynte – Part Two
From 'The Wife of Bath's Tale' written by fourteenth-century English writer Geoffrey Chaucer as part of his Canterbury Tales: 'For, certeyn, olde dotard, by youre leve, Ye shul have queynte right ynogh at eve.' And a little later on: 'What eyleth yow to grucche thus and grone? Is it for ye wolde have my queynte allone?'
The Silly Queynte – Part Three
The open-minded (or is that empty-headed?) university president also stated that the meaning of the word depended on its use, and that she 'actually heard it used as a term of endearment.' Yeah, I'd love to see Ms. Medieval Scholar go into a dyke bar and start tossing around that term of endearment. You'd see lesbians getting medieval all over her ass real damn quick.
The Silly Tipitiwitchet
While were on the subject, a few columns ago I mentioned that the origin of the name 'Venus Fly Trap' for the carnivorous plant came about because certain bawdy botanists in the early 1700's thought the two halves of the meat-eating plant looked like a queynte. What I didn't mention at the time was that another name that they had for the same plant was 'tipitiwitchet.'
Got A Collection Of Medieval Porn You Want On The Web?
While there is a straight porn site at cunt.com, the URL of queynte.com is still open. Unless Betsy gets to it first.
Maybe He Can Argue It Depended On The Context In Which He Said It
California State Education Secretary Richard Riordan was at an event to promote reading when a six-year-old girl, Isis D'Luciano, asked him if he knew her name meant 'Egyptian goddess.' He responded that her name meant 'stupid dirty girl.'
Oooh Baby, Talk Dirty To Me
Another recent news story headline: 'Cowboys' language was as dirty as their boots.' That's what they get for forgetting to clean them off before licking 'em.
According to the story in the Sun-Times, 'fusty lugs' referred to a 'sluttish woman' (Jack Ryan please take note), a woman's breasts were referred to as 'Cupid's kettle drums,' and the penis was called a 'plug tail.' Also, by 1743 'golly,' 'gosh' and 'doggone' were used as substitutes for 'God' and 'goddamn,' while 'Jiminy' was used by the 1830's in place of 'Jesus,' soon to be followed by 'Jiminy Crickets' and 'jeez.'
All Halliburton Broke Loose
In a news story from late June, Vice President Dick Cheney was on the floor of the U.S. Senate, and was overheard saying either 'fuck off,' 'fuck you' or 'fuck yourself' to Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT) who was critical of the military contracts awarded to the company formerly ran by the vulgar VP. Ironically, the exchange occurred on the same day the Senate passed legislation described as the 'Defense of Decency Act' by 99 to 1.
If you're 'Dick' Cheney and need someone to talk dirty to, e-mail me at DaveInChicago773@aol.com
If you're Betsy Hoffman, fuck off, fuck you and fuck yourself.