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Thread: Bad phrase!!!

  1. #1
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    Bad phrase!!!

    i was thinkun that what bill simpson brought up on the the the walnut wood gloat, the phraze "You suck" isnt a appropiate thing to be saying in a family atmosphere.. he defined it quite well as to the origin of the phraze so i wont redo that.. he also made a point that the letters" PITA " were not allowed in our COC and if that is where the family stands on that, in my opinion this other phraze is also in very poor taste. i think we can easily use other terminology to say that someone got a great deal on some wood or tool.. i am not sayin i am a saint or that my wife is a nun but i do know that i wouldnt say that in front of my daughters at home or in public where there were mixed company..so i would like to have poll made to see what the members have to say about this. and if need be they can register to vote on it after the present election. till then lets get some discussion on it from the family...after the discussion perhaps we can get a referendum to the COC to change the present ruling.. now we dont need any more graphics, we all know what we are talking about ...thansk for your time
    If in Doubt, Build it Stout!
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  2. #2
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    Larry,

    No question about our need to keep the Forum a good environment for all users. The word "suck(s)" can, of course, be used in many ways that are not inappropriate. For instance, it's not uncommon to read a post on a good dust collector and see repeated instances of "it really sucks!" I think everyone takes that in context and it shouldn't be considered offensive. However, if a poster uses the term "you suck", then perhaps the post should be modified. While most of us understand the phrase was used in a light-hearted manner, it could be offensive to others.

    Bill Arnold
    Citizen of Texas residing in Georgia.
    NRA Life Member and Member of Mensa
    My Weather Underground station

  3. #3
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    Agreed, even though the phrase is in common use, at all age levels, today it's origin is salacious. I cringe when I hear young people using it. Not because I haven't heard 'bad' words, but because such usage indicates an inability to express thoughts through proper grammar and reasoned arguments.
    When I got discharged from the Air Force in 1963, I made a vow to myself that I would never again cuss unintentionally. I'll use the occasional 'naughty' word but for emphasis or humor. Such language is not part of my speech pattern. Never has been and never will be. My children have never heard me cuss.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Frank Fusco View Post
    Agreed, even though the phrase is in common use, at all age levels, today it's origin is salacious. I cringe when I hear young people using it. Not because I haven't heard 'bad' words, but because such usage indicates an inability to express thoughts through proper grammar and reasoned arguments.
    When I got discharged from the Air Force in 1963, I made a vow to myself that I would never again cuss unintentionally. I'll use the occasional 'naughty' word but for emphasis or humor. Such language is not part of my speech pattern. Never has been and never will be. My children have never heard me cuss.
    Frank,
    Well said! In spite of the possibility that I may have used the phrase here myself (I didn't do the search) I'm tending to lean in the 'not the best way to express yourself' direction. Granted, we here understand the context and don't take offense, but, as someone else stated, I would not use the term with my grandkids. Stay or go - the phrase’s future is in the hands of the mods, but it would not bother me at all if it were to be added to "The List".
    Host of the 2017 Family Woodworking Gathering - Sunken Wood

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  5. #5
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    Since my thread seems to have sparked this, I feel like I started it. I'd like to say a few things about this...

    My wife and I frequently have discussions about language and the definitions of various words. She likes to stick to a single definition and holds everyone to that ideal. Trouble is, she decides the definition to hold you to and ignores the context. This is where our discussions begin!

    If you read nothing else I say, please read this: There is never ONE single RIGHT definition of most words by themselves without context.

    The phrase "you suck" does NOT mean what people seem to be saying it does. The word "suck" has been used in OTHER phrases that mean what these people are objecting to. But it's pretty benign in the phrase above when used the way we use it here. Definitions have nothing to do with it, really - it's all in the context.

    "Daddy, What does 'You Suck' mean?"
    "In this case, it means the person is jealous or jokingly giving someone a hard time." <-- You are NOT obligated to give the etymology of the individual words used and all their gory details. The phrase has a different meaning than it's consituent words. It's about context. Call it what it really is, in context.

    Getting bent out of shape over this phrase scares me. What's next? You have to draw the line somewhere. I wouldn't want to be on a forum where I have to tip-toe around innocuous phrases like "You Suck" when someone gloats. It's practically expected! :P

    I'm not saying don't express your opinion about the phrase. You are entitled to your opinion and this place makes it pretty easy to express that objection. The phrase you object to, though, is your objection and not the user's. Raising an objection is not always a requirement for change. People like to fix problems by nature, but if we tried to fix everyone's problems, we wouldn't get anywhere. To that end, people come to expect changes to be made when they complain and that gets dangerous, too. To try to force an ideology on anyone else by adding rules to restrict it is just unacceptable to me.

    Please ... for the good of this forum ... leave the rule making to the real issues. If you try to make a rule against every phrase people took offense to, who would talk? Surely not me.

    Take what you like. Leave the rest.
    Nobody can make you feel anything without your consent.
    Your feelings are your responsibility.

    I don't like language restrictions (as you might have noticed) and I don't feel that "you suck" is crossing any politeness boundaries. I personaly feel that telling me I can't use benign phrases in benign ways (and it really IS benign in this context) is a great way to alienate people.

    *shrug*

    I should quit typing - i feel a little strongly about this and have trouble stopping myself. I'll re-read and adjust before I send.

    Okay - i might have just fueled the fire, but i think my opinion is equal to everyone else's so I choose to express it
    Jason Beam
    Sacramento, CA

  6. #6
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    Jason,
    As you say, context is the key. I first happened upon that phrase used in the 'attaboy' context over on Woodnet several years ago. It has become the 'attaboy' of choice on many forums when someone buys a new toyl or makes a decent purchase of supplies at a good price.

    for me, I prefer to say other phrases to congratulate folks on their achievements, but that's just me. I agree in principal, however, that fewer specific rules are better, and that legislating to a very inflexible standard will tend to make folks turn to other venues.

    I'm glad you posted on this, and hope you continue to do so. Having strong feelings isn't a bad thing at all, and you should voice your opinion.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jason Beam View Post
    Since my thread seems to have sparked this, I feel like I started it. I'd like to say a few things about this...

    My wife and I frequently have discussions about language and the definitions of various words. She likes to stick to a single definition and holds everyone to that ideal. Trouble is, she decides the definition to hold you to and ignores the context. This is where our discussions begin!

    If you read nothing else I say, please read this: There is never ONE single RIGHT definition of most words by themselves without context.

    The phrase "you suck" does NOT mean what people seem to be saying it does. The word "suck" has been used in OTHER phrases that mean what these people are objecting to. But it's pretty benign in the phrase above when used the way we use it here. Definitions have nothing to do with it, really - it's all in the context.

    "Daddy, What does 'You Suck' mean?"
    "In this case, it means the person is jealous or jokingly giving someone a hard time." <-- You are NOT obligated to give the etymology of the individual words used and all their gory details. The phrase has a different meaning than it's consituent words. It's about context. Call it what it really is, in context.

    Getting bent out of shape over this phrase scares me. What's next? You have to draw the line somewhere. I wouldn't want to be on a forum where I have to tip-toe around innocuous phrases like "You Suck" when someone gloats. It's practically expected! :P

    I'm not saying don't express your opinion about the phrase. You are entitled to your opinion and this place makes it pretty easy to express that objection. The phrase you object to, though, is your objection and not the user's. Raising an objection is not always a requirement for change. People like to fix problems by nature, but if we tried to fix everyone's problems, we wouldn't get anywhere. To that end, people come to expect changes to be made when they complain and that gets dangerous, too. To try to force an ideology on anyone else by adding rules to restrict it is just unacceptable to me.

    Please ... for the good of this forum ... leave the rule making to the real issues. If you try to make a rule against every phrase people took offense to, who would talk? Surely not me.

    Take what you like. Leave the rest.
    Nobody can make you feel anything without your consent.
    Your feelings are your responsibility.

    I don't like language restrictions (as you might have noticed) and I don't feel that "you suck" is crossing any politeness boundaries. I personaly feel that telling me I can't use benign phrases in benign ways (and it really IS benign in this context) is a great way to alienate people.

    *shrug*

    I should quit typing - i feel a little strongly about this and have trouble stopping myself. I'll re-read and adjust before I send.

    Okay - i might have just fueled the fire, but i think my opinion is equal to everyone else's so I choose to express it
    -Ned

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jason Beam View Post
    You are NOT obligated to give the etymology of the individual words used and all their gory details. The phrase has a different meaning than it's consituent words.
    Dear Jason,

    First, let me say I agree with your central points. I'm a descriptive grammarian, not a prescriptive one, and given my former profession it makes a big difference. We should look at what, and how, people actually mean, even if... well, let's not get off topic by talking about how language works.

    But one tiny quibble. Often, etymology is quite useful. This is one of those cases. The term, in the present use, is actually southern. The first use in literature that I know of by Faulkner, in the 30's. As you know, Faulkner often wrote about dogs. In this case (it was either in The Bear or in As I Lay Dying) he was writing about a dog whose owner was telling him how useless he was. Something along the lines of 'you no good, egg sucking dog. Yes, you suck eggs' At the time, of course, when many southerners depended on their backyard poultry for nourishment, a dog who sucked chicken eggs would be far worse then useless.

    The phrase lay there for a couple decades, although still in current usage, until Hunter Thompson picked it up in the 60's as part of his definition of Gonzo journalism. From there, it rapidly exploded... so much so that by the early 70s I had some old blue jeans with a patch on the knee that read "There is no gravity, the whole world sucks."

    Now, it is true that the usage some people object to dates to the late 19th century, but that was in British english, and was certainly not widespread in American literature and language until at least the 60s, and probably much later... certainly, not until the post-Stonewall period.

    My point is that when people use it now, they are using it in the Faulknerian sense. I wouldn't use it, though, in polite company, nor with my four year old. But that doesn't mean I would proscribe its usage here. As I said, I'm a *descriptive* grammarian. After all, as you say, context is everything...

    Thanks,

    Bill
    Last edited by Bill Lantry; 10-06-2008 at 04:33 PM.

  8. #8
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    I'm with Jason on this one. I understand the offense which can be taken from the phrase, but I think context is everything. How about our policy being -
    if you don't like the phrase, don't use it.

    My $.02. With kind regards to all. BTW, I don't remember ever my using "YS" to anyone.

    Ken
    If you're not part of the solution, you're part of the precipitate.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2007
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    Jason,

    The issue has been in and out of discussions for a while now, so no, you didn't start it. The person that did bring it up did have a reference to "Road Apples" just the other day. Where I come from this is something that comes from the rear of a horse. Try explaining that to your kids as well. I do think context is the key here and apparently their view of the word suck was different than that of mine with road apples.

    Just my 2 cents...
    Darren

    To a small child, the perfect granddad is unafraid of big dogs and fierce storms but absolutely terrified of the word “boo.” – Robert Brault

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
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    Amazing. All the negative stuff going on in this world & you guys are trying to crack down on a phrase that is widely accepted as complimentary. I don't post much anymore but I frankly think this is ridiculous.

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