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Your Favorite Curses

By Tater Barley Banks | Comment Diversions | March 6, 2010 |

By Tater Barley Banks | Comment Diversions | March 6, 2010 |

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Don’t know why I thought of this guy after 30 years, but anyway …

In the little town where I lived for two years working my first real job, up the block from the office, was a pizza shop run by a man named Johnny Balsamo. Johnny was cliche Italian immigrant, a short man with a black moustache whose command of English was … tenuous.

The man made cheap, greasy pizza. I mean you’d pick up a slice and the orange grease would drip off the point.

It was wonderful.

Balsamo’s and some other fast-food places in that town kept me alive on my $150/week salary, long enough to find another job anyway …

So I liked Johnny, in a cautious way. I even had a business transaction with him. I had a ring from a broken engagement that no jewelry store would give me even a half-decent return on. I told Johnny about this and he said, “Show me da reeng.” He said he’d give me $400 and even let me talk him up to $450. Paid cash.

I didn’t think much about it at the time — where’s a guy running a pizza shop in Southwest Bumponalog, Pa., get $450 cash? I didn’t care, either. That was three weeks’ pay, so …

After two years in the town I moved on to a new job, and then another new job, and then another new job where I ended up working with a man who had started in HIS first job at the same place in Southwest Bumponalog. Somehow Johnny’s name came up, and my colleague told me pizza wasn’t the only thing Johnny had been dealing at his shop.

My friend had covered Johnny’s trial, and said that Johnny had been pressured to reveal his drug connections or face deportation. He said Johnny got this crazed look on his face and laughed a maniacal laugh. Johnny was smart enough to prefer living in Italy to dying violently in the States.

That’s the last I’ve ever heard about him …

Geez, I do take a long time to come to a point, don’t I?

I mentioned Johnny’s tenuous grasp on English. His favorite swear word was “muddyfuck.” That’s how he said it, as in “I KEEL you, muddyfuck.” So no matter what mood he was in, it was incredibly difficult not to laugh when he said it. I mean, it sounds like a cartoon character, doesn’t it?

“Muddyfuck the Duck & Friends”

That’s probably the most creative mangling of a swear word I’ve ever heard.

How about you? What’s your favorite? Could be a twist or mispronunciation of a standard curse, a particularly creative combination or, especially if people you know are of Mediterranean or Middle Eastern origins, one of those amazing “may the fleas of a thousand camels” deals invented right on the spot.

In college I played pinball with a guy who once tilted the machine, gave it one last angry shake and shouted “Street whore!”

OK, y’all can do better than that, you KNOW you can.

TATER BARLEY BANKS is not to be trusted. He probably makes up everything he writes about himself, especially the stuff about living in West Virginia. Don’t be fooled. In truth, he lives in Pajibaland, where he speaks gibberish as , (TCFKAB), spends his time sitting on a park bench, eyeing little girls with bad intent, and is developing a 25-letter alphabet, now that his key doesn’t work. He has no blog, no Facebook page and no MySpace page, so don’t try to find him. If you’re so inclined, you can email Tater.

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