Being the innocent, overprotected, only child that I am, I’ve always hated cuss words. I never swear and it makes me really uncomfortable when other people swear. I’ve managed to avoid having people swear around me for most of my life, but in high school this was much harder than in middle school.
Especially in the trombone section, which is notorious for being loud, rude, inappropriate, and, of course, cursing like it’s their job. So on the first day of pre-band camp this summer, I knew it was going to be very difficult, if not impossible, to stop the section from swearing, especially when I’d heard most of them cuss before I even knew their names. I thought to myself, two things could come from this; One, I scold them about it enough to the point that they get annoyed with me and stop; Or two, the most likely option, I don’t say anything and eventually evolve into a swearing beast like them.
Being loyal to my values, I told them to stop. Multiple times. I always said to them “No profanities, please.”
And they always answered “F off, freshman” (Well actually, they said a cuss word that begins with ‘F’, but I don’t swear in writing either, so you’ll just have to imagine it there).
This happened countless times for the first 3 days of knowing these rowdy teens. Every time I told them to stop swearing, they told me to F off, and this made me more and more upset and that made them swear more because they thought it was funny to aggravate the freshman and this made me tell them to stop swearing, they told me to F off, and this made me more and - well I think you get the point; I got trapped in an endless cycle surrounded by adolescents who thought it was amusing to make me mad.
But then, on the 4th day of pre-band camp, I noticed that instead of swearing, some of the uncivilized youths started using ‘filler words’ instead of swearing. These are words like ‘frick’, ‘shoot’, and ‘darn’. I much prefer these words opposed to swear words. Sometimes, if I’m feeling super risky and heated, I’ll even use filler words. And I also noticed that if some of them slipped up and swore around me, they apologised pretty quickly.
So slowly, the termination of vulgar vernacular spread around the section, and it went from 15 neanderthals always cursing, to 10, to 5. I’m going to be honest, those 5 savages still swear whenever they want, but it doesn’t bother me as much as it used to. I’m now much more comfortable around my section than I used to be, I think it’s a combination of me adapting to hearing them speak inappropriately, and them using less inappropriate language around me. I’m sure they all swear excessively when I’m not around, but I can’t control them all the time; I’m perfectly happy with them just not swearing for the 58 minutes a day I see them.