Part 3: Cursing in my Classes
September 11, 2008
Before I bring Random family cursing up to the the modern day, describing an incident involving Random Granddaughter being shocked by Grandma’s raw language, I will describe a couple of incidents of dreadful language that have taken place in my work as a computer instructor.
Years ago, at my previous teaching job, an airline pilot working for one of the major airlines was a student in a WordPerfect class (back in the days when WordPerfect for DOS still ruled the word processing world).
He was friendly, personable, and charming, and spoke in that West Virginia drawl so well described by Tom Wolfe in <i>The Right Stuff</i>.
Everybody immediately liked him. About half an hour into the class, some eccentric action on the part of his computer disconcerted him and he exclaimed, “Oh, shit!” A couple of respectable matrons winced, but everybody (including me) pretended not to hear. The classes I taught at the time covered 12 hours over a two-day span. He must have repeated his little ejaculations half a dozen times in that two-day period.
I am not a “frequent-flyer” but I have taken fairly long flights about a dozen times or two. More than once as the plane starts bouncing and down, the pilot has offered the reassuring drawl, “We’ll be experiencing a little turbulence for a few minutes, folks, but we should be through it in a little while.” Once I hear that, I relax and return to my book, though I do clutch the spine firmly.
I can’t help but wonder if passengers on this pilot’s flights heard something to the effect of, “Holy shit, that was a big one!” or “Mother of God, did you see how close that other plane came to us? Where in God’s name did he get his pilot’s license?!”
I’m afraid if I had been on one of his flights, it would have scared the shit out of me.