Don’t let your middle-class kids swear. I said no. For my sake, not for theirs. I don’t want my words dirtied by their silvered mouths.

Swearing is one of the last working-class things we have left. The softer words have been gentrified – the ‘who gives a crap’ posh eco-friendly toilet roll that costs a pound a roll. But not the sticky words, and the hard, cutting words. The cunting words. The ones that are awful and make your mum smack you. You’re never too old to be smacked by your mum when you’re working class. But that look in her eye is enough. In that look I can feel the pain of her smacking me, and the pain of her pulling my rough hair tightly into a bun so I would look pretty with the other girls at dance class, but my hair always belied me. It was never smooth. It stuck out, vertically, in a ring around my face. I knew we didn’t have enough money for my dance classes, so I said I didn’t like them anymore so my parents didn’t feel bad about having to stop them.

Good toes naughty toes. My toes are naughty; they walk me clumsily into places I don’t belong, they lead me to wander into mindless spirals… I keep losing my brain. I keep trying my hardest to remember what I was doing just a second ago. It’s my antidepressants. They make me lose my memory, so that I don’t lose my mind. Let’s swear.

Fuck. That’s MY word. It takes posh people aback and I love to see them recoil. I love the ‘fffff’ and how it makes you hold your bottom lip in your teeth. I love the click of your tongue with the ‘ck’. Fuck this. Fuck you. It’s versatile. It’s hostile. It can dot your sentences with genuininity. Is that a word? I don’t think it is.


Leave a Reply