Amanda Lewis

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Bad Words

Get your mind out of the gutter!

No, I am not here to talk about curses. Although, George Carlin is always a good ice breaker. Even Stephen King mentions him in his book ‘On Writing’, “And do feel free to take appropriateness into account; …in some company it’s perfectly all right to prick your finger, but very bad form to finger your prick.”

No, the bad words I wish to discuss today are words I strictly leave out of my (mental toolbox Mr. King) vocabulary.

#1. Perfect

per·fect adj\ˈpər-fikt\

1. a : being entirely without fault or defect : flawless <a perfect diamond> b : satisfying all requirements : accurate c : corresponding to an ideal standard or abstract concept <a perfect gentleman> d : faithfully reproducing the original; specifically : letter-perfect e : legally valid
2. : expert, proficient <practice makes perfect>
3. a : pure, total b : lacking in no essential detail : complete c obsolete : sane d : absolute, unequivocal <enjoys perfect happiness> e : of an extreme kind : unmitigated <a perfect brat> <an act of perfect foolishness>
4. obsolete : mature
5. : of, relating to, or constituting a verb form or verbal that expresses an action or state completed at the time of speaking or at a time spoken of
6. obsolete a : certain, sure b : contented, satisfied
7. of a musical interval : belonging to the consonances unison, fourth, fifth, and octave which retain their character when inverted and when raised or lowered by a half step become augmented or diminished
8. a : sexually mature and fully differentiated <a perfect insect> b : having both stamens and pistils in the same flower <a perfect flower>

I’ll be the first to admit that I’m not perfect; I make mistakes (sometimes bad ones, sometimes detrimental ones that mask themselves at first). I really hate messing up. Like a mouse that can collapse its body, this word tries to squish its way in under the closed-door of my consciousness. But, also like a sneaky little mouse, you don’t realise it’s in until you find it’s droppings along the baseboard. (Not that I have any personal experience with mice.)

The pursuit of perfection isn’t really a bad thing. It’s only when you get the slap of reality that you realise it was taking over at all. The pursuit of perfection is the seed of doubt. If you actively pursue it you won’t get anywhere. How many writers don’t finish their book because “it’s not perfect yet”? How many times has a woman looked in the mirror and decided that she wasn’t good enough because “she didn’t look like a perfect model or actress”? How many….?

You get the point. When you let go of the pursuit of perfection you allow yourself permission to be human. To make mistakes and accept them for the opportunity for growth that they are. (Still working on that one, Mom.)

#2 Normal

  /ˈnɔrməl/ Show Spelled[nawr-muhl] Show IPA

1. conforming to the standard or the common type; usual; not abnormal; regular; natural.
2. serving to establish a standard.
3. Psychology .

a. approximately average in any psychological trait, as intelligence, personality, or emotional adjustment.
b. free from any mental disorder; sane.
4. Biology, Medicine/Medical .

a. free from any infection or other form of disease or malformation, or from experimental therapy or manipulation.
b. of natural occurrence.
5. Mathematics .

a. being at right angles, as a line; perpendicular.
b. of the nature of or pertaining to a mathematical normal.
c. (of an orthogonal system of real functions) defined so that the integral of the square of the absolute value of any function is 1.
d. (of a topological space) having the property that corresponding to every pair of disjoint closed sets are two disjoint open sets, each containing one of the closed sets.
e. (of a subgroup) having the property that the same set of elements results when all the elements of the subgroup are operated on consistently on the left and consistently on the right by any element of the group; invariant.
(And that’s just the short list.)
I am not ‘normal’. There are many writers who would claim the same, but I think that when you’re standing in the shower, home alone, and hear a strange noise and create a whole scenario with an axe-murderer and what you might do in the event, and your imagination takes over until you simply must investigate like those idiots that die in the b-movie horror flicks… Then I think I have every right to face the truth that I’ll never be ‘normal’.
🙂 Thank goodness!
I firmly believe that normal is boring. And I think many of you are with me; considering the success of the Harry Potter franchise. The entertainment industry is built upon the average wanting to be special. 🙂 Hip, hip hooray! for variety. Who was it that said, “Variety is the spice of life”?
So, what are some bad words you try to avoid? Some advice in keeping the monster words at bay? I love to hear from you guys!
Happy Hump Day!

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