In 7th grade my friend Dave told me about a rap group that swore a lot and didn't have a Parental Advisory sticker on their album covers. That meant you didn't have to be 16 to buy the records (cassettes/CDs as it were). Perfect for a 12 year old. :)

(For those of you outside of the States please read about the waste of tax payer money that is the Parents Music Resource Center and the Parental Advisory sticker by clicking the blue links.)

The day Dave told me about this group, I.C.P. (Insane Clown Posse), I went out and bought their albums Carnival of Carnage and Beverly Kills 50187. :)

I was hooked for years. It felt like I joined a secret club. A club where nobody cared what you looked like, what you wore, how you spoke, or where you were from. All that mattered was that you liked Faygo and hated "the man." This was important to angst ridden youth.

Then I.C.P. signed to a major record label and gave up on their convictions for millions of dollars. Since they were no longer independent they had no choice in the matter: every single record they released would have a Parental Advisory sticker on it. CENSORED

It didn't make sense to me how they could rap about doing whatever they wanted and not conforming to "the man" and yet give in to "the man."

I stopped listening to them, but their initial indie spirit lived on in my heart. (Now that I'm older I completely understand 2 high school drop outs going after mad cash instead of indie cred.)

"Hey Karol, keep it up. Make sure nobody understands or cares what you're talking about so they don't connect with this article."

Why is my blog talking to me?

Whatever...

Here's the deal: I know cursing can make a person sound uncultured and uncouth.

That said, I curse. I say For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge and Ship High In Transit and the other words often.

I never claimed to be cultured. ;)

Wait, Ship High In Transit isn't the real origin of "that word." I (we?) just learned something. Culture points for Karol? At least 1.

For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge is a really bad Van Halen album, but it's a sweet phrase. Culture points for Karol? 1, but subtract .5 because it's Sammy Hagar.

"Karol, you're doing it again."

Right. Moving on...

I don't use cursing as a crutch. As is demonstrated by 90% of the articles on this site, I don't need to curse to get my point across.

Sometimes cursing grabs attention.

And in that way, cursing can be good.

Cursing can cut through a person's "online reading haze" and get them to focus on what you have to say.

If overused, just like any other literary device, it loses its effectiveness.

Everybody curses

Every creed and every kind, everybody curses. Or they think about cursing  but censor themselves.

It's liberating to let it happen.

Recently, I used the F-word 2 times in a row for blog titles. That wasn't on purpose, it just happened that way.

A couple weeks ago I posted F!&k “Doing It While You Can” (or How To Make Things Happen) and I was upset with myself for days.

Censorship isn't congruent with my personality and I censored my own self out of fear.

"My blog isn't popular yet. Will the few people who do read, leave if I curse?"

I let that get to me. That is not the Ridiculously Extraordinary Way. I'm not "signed to a major label" like I.C.P.

I can do what I want. :)

So when it came to the articles where I did use the F-word I laid the cards on the table.

I thought to myself:

"I can live with losing every single reader I worked hard to acquire if they don't like the real me. What I can't deal with is pretending to be something I'm not."

That's all it boils down to.

I know I'm being redundant (last week's article was about being your true self, being congruent), but I'm interested:

Are you the same person in public and in private? That is, do you censor yourself when others are paying attention?

Why or why not?

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