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England, eh? There will al-fucking-ways be one, innit?

Your Humble Blogger was going to use this article about Tory leader David Cameron using a line about twitter that I think originated with Stephen Fry (or perhaps Germaine Greer) to talk about Conservatives and profanity in this country. But then I remembered that Our Only President won a motherfucking Grammy for his recording his motherfucking book, thus making him one of the very few American Presidents to have the honor of having thousands of citizens use their mobile phones alert them to messages with the Presidential “Sorry-ass motherfucker”.

So, I’m left with this: according to a spokesman for the Conservative leader, “twat was not a swearword under radio guidelines” in the UK?! I mean, interrobang? Or, as they might have said back in FJM days, Fuck the heck?

Tolerabimus quod tolerare debemus,


When I first heard the word "twat", as a teenager I think, I didn't know what it meant, and figured it was a variant of "twit". My parents were pretty startled when I told someone (them? my sister?) "don't be such a twat".

That is, of course, more or less the way it is commonly used in England, as I understand it, and is certainly the way Mr. Cameron used it on live radio. I think I've only heard it two or three times in my whole life being used to refer to the genitals, and I think a good 90% of the times I've ever read it have been in British fiction or blogs, where it is used to describe a particular kind of objectionable person.

One could (and several have) detail the difference between the kind of person described as a twat, as a dick, as an asshole, as a cunt, as a prick, as a nut, as a tit (UK usage), as an ass, or as a pussy. With attention to regional differences, gender differences, and the evolving use over time.

On the other hand, sorry-ass motherfucker doesn't really need any explaining, does it?


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