Gosh darn it all to heck!

I work with a lovely, sweet-hearted, non-swearing woman. It’s one of the things that truly endears her to me because she gets so righteously indignant about things, and she clearly would swear in those instances if she was a cusser, but instead she will say something so cute it’s comical (or so comical it’s cute)!  She actually says, “dang” on a regular basis, which amuses the mess out of me.¹

Before she left work tonight we were talking about the difficult we’re both having with the doing of our taxes.  She was telling me how meticulous she always is with her tax paperwork … and how important it is for her to have already finished all this stuff because she needs to have submitted it already for her applying-to-college daughter’s FAFSA forms .. but how some changes in her husband’s job have confused things and made an otherwise straightforward process a bit messy.

She got a little worked-up in the telling, frustrated with herself for not seeing a key error she had made which dramatically altered every subsequent total … and in her upset she said, “And then I realized: Dagnabbit, I’ll have to start the whole thing over again!”²

Forgive me, but … dagnabbit?  How can I not love her?  Now, Fox and I say dagnabbit from time to time, but really only to be silly.  I can’t really articulate how much it pleases me to know that someone is still using this word in full seriousness!

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¹  Yes, yes, I could say I find it fucking hilarious, but figure I should watch my potty mouth in honor of my dear co-worker.

²  You’ll be happy to know that this wonderful term is in the urban dictionary: “(exclamation) Oldcootism used during great consternation or surprise. Used by 1890’s prospectors, cantankerous old farmers, and young people playing old people on TV in the ‘60’s and ‘70’s.” (That last is totally my favorite bit, obviously a refernce to foiled oldster criminals on Scooby Doo!)

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Check out the rest of the slices of life over at Stacey and Ruth’s.

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22 thoughts on “Gosh darn it all to heck!

  1. I love the line…”a non swearing woman,” unfortunately that isn’t me!!!! Personally I think it helps. I try hard not to cuss in front of small children and old people. However, my cussing relieves stress and I don’t have to take little white pills to calm my nerves.

    1. Oh, that’s not me, either, Lennye! Comically enough, people tend to apologize to me when they swear in front of me. Clearly, I give off some air of … I don’t know … delicateness perhaps? … that makes people think I will be mortally offended if I hear a curse word. Ha! Good thing it’s not true, I’d be making myself faint all the time!

  2. You made me laugh. For a while, years even, I swore off cursing. Then one day the first cuss word slipped out. a few days later, I felt the need to belt out a few more. I realized that sometimes there is no substitute for “F-you”(you see what I mean)!

    1. There have definitely been times in my life when I’ve been less of a swearer … and certainly I watch my tongue at work and in the classroom. I don’t have “a mouth like a truck driver” the rest of the time, but I’m no inncent, either. Sometimes the expletive is really the appropriate term in a situation!

  3. Mrs. B

    LOL!!! I want to be like your “lovely, sweet-hearted, non-swearing” friend but I am just not. My friends used to tease me that I must have had a quota to hit by the end of the day because as soon as I was out of school the words would just start flying out. I have gotten better about cleaning up my act as I get older!

  4. Driving. It usually occurs while driving. Although, I learned early on not to make angry gestures. Sometime you might end up gesturing at your boss, before you realize who it was that made that trun!

    1. I think bringing ‘dagnabbit’ back would actually eliminate the need to say it: we’d all be laughing so hard, we’d forget why we were angry in the first place!

  5. I have a couple of co-workers who are also of the kind-hearted, sweet variety. One of the frequently uses the word “sugar” as a substitute for cursing, and it sends me into fits of giggles.

    I used to work with truck drivers, and my mouth is so bad I made *them* blush.

    My mom, on the other hand, says the funniest sorts of things: she was sewing one day and was having problems. She says, “Golly gee, this darn thing isn’t cooperating!”. I ask her what, exactly, and she says, “this mother-f*cking, piece of shit seam ripper.” Followed up by, “Blast it!”.

  6. molly

    It’s fun to teach Italians the “avoid the swear” words. The students always enjoy that as a relaxing moment, and love guessing what the real swear word is. They know all the swear words, of course. I will add “dagnabbit” to “gosh”, “shucks”, “heck”, “goll darn it” (and “oh, sugar”, one of my faves). I don’t teach my grandfather’s classic, “jesum crow”, but I like it.
    I love “goodness gracious”, and wish I said it more often than I do. I am more likely to say f.. and sh..
    I adore “amuses the mess out of me”. And I think I would be a fan of your colleague if I met her.

    1. I’m interested in that “jesum crow,” I have to say. I’ve never heard that one before. And I’ll admit that, even with my swearing, I say some of these soft ones as well. “Oh my,” and “good heavens” are common enough for me … and I can’t let my co-worker have credit for “amuses the mess out of me.” That one’s all mine!

  7. I suspect your colleague would have enjoyed my Facebook status from a couple of weeks ago when I exclaimed ‘Darn it all smithereens! Darn, I say! Darn!” then immediately apologized for the profanity of it. 🙂

    There is a charm in it. It took my growing to near adulthood before I realized Granddaddy’s very emphatic “Jimmy Crickets!” was his substitute exclamation for Jesus Christ. moment.

    1. There is definitely a charm in it. It’s part of the reason I hold onto my “oh my” … it’s funny but it’s a kinder, gentler way to take on the bad stuff. (Hey, hope you all had fun last weekend! Sorry I didn’t get to join in.)

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