From xradiograph

WordSalad: Expletive Deleted

Symbolizing Swears

Depicting the Undepictable

(source) (NYT: Why Do Educated People Use Bad Words?)


In [Mort Walker’s] book The Lexicon of Comicana (1980), written as a satirical look at the devices cartoonists use, [he]invented a vocabulary called Symbolia. For example, Walker coined the term “squeans” to describe the starbusts and little circles that appear around a cartoon’s head to indicate intoxication. The typographical symbols that stand for profanities, which appear in dialogue balloons in the place of actual dialogue, Walker called “grawlixes.” -source



all those stars and beeps





Wikipedia:List_of_fictional_expletives - no longer exists

try List_of_fictional_expletives.htm

Language Log: Automatic asterisking
Language Log: Annals of Taboo Avoidance omnibus
Language Log: taboo vocabulary
BBC: Tourette’s on Big Brother
Language Log: Linguistic filth at the movies
Language Log: On the track of the squean
Language Log:
Language Log:
Language Log:
Language Log: on the Translation of Maledicta


Language Log: un-asterisking the internet
Language Log: offensive words-lists found offensive
1890s baseball players had quite the command of foul invective


Wikipedia:Scunthorpe_Problem - or, why automatic substitution and blocking is a bad idea. Also see Obscenity Filers at Coding Horror


“Curse Words” as nonsense poetry
Sesame Street’s “The Count” censored - you-tube video, as long as it lasts.
Language Log: (more) comic profanity and an appearance of “other assorted grammatical symbols”


Snakes on a Plane - the “tv edit” of the “famous line.” .. I am so tired of these monkified snakes on this monday-to-friday plane? bwuh--???


Heywood Jablomie appears in the news


Sesame Street: The Count <bleeps>


Larkin vs. The Grey Lady and The first “asshole” in the Times?



Metasyntacic Variables and other delights

Not a replacement for an expletive, but known unknowns (in programming): Wikipedia:Metasyntactic_variable via a Stack overflow discussion on “foo” and “bar” (and “baz” and “qux” &c). I use “thingy” with increasing frequency, but that’s usually just for personal use.



Local Incidents

After going outside, the off-duty patrolman said he heard someone yell, “Are you (expletive) retarded? Get me the (expletive) mop.”


Patrolman Gilman said he then yelled, “Watch your mouth,” because there were children in the neighborhood, to which the person replied “(Expletive) off.”


Expletive literally deleted (well, transformed)



Fuzzy logic


Fuzzy Logic - sequence from GetFuzzy



a joke

Mom: Did you tell your father you wrecked the car?
Son: Yes.
Mom: What did he say?
Son: Should I leave out the swears?
Mom: Of course.
Son: Not a thing ...





Expletive Alluded

The Assumption Song with comment-links to other suggestive-songs. Bonus link to Wikipedia:Miss_Susie



See Also

blog posts tagged expletives
Don Martin’s sound effects - not swears, so not sure where to put them.
Dictionary - which links to several slang dictionaries. There should probably be a page devoted to slang.




swears obscenity filtering language cops morality police slang vulgar tongue

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Page last modified on October 02, 2015, at 10:58 AM