I’ve mentioned this before, but I really need to clean up my language. Yesterday, I said something involving the word “fuck” and Soren repeated it right back to me. That’s not cool, man. The other day, the tv was on and ESPN was showing football highlights. Soren sat on the couch, looked at the tv, and yelled, “OH MY GOD. SHIT.”
As Ben and one of my twitterfriends accurately pointed out, he learned it from watching me. I’ve been swearing since I was a kid. I remember getting busted for it in third grade, when this dorkball snitch Billy told his mom, who sold Avon with my mom, that I swore at school and of course his mom told my mom. Then in seventh grade, I was sentenced to sit in the front seat on the bus (oh, the horror) for weeks after I told the bus driver to fuck off for yelling at a guy I liked.
It’s not that I haven’t been trying to improve my overall verbal expression skills or at least stop swearing so damn much. I have been trying. And failing. But I’ve finally figured out the problem. It’s the same problem people have been facing when trying to give up something bad since the dawn of time: You can’t replace something with nothing. You have a higher chance of success, I think, if you replace the undesirable behavior with a new, more constructive behavior instead of just trying to quit the undesirable behavior.
Here, as always, is where Rob Gronkowski comes in. (If you’re not a sports fan, Rob Gronkowski is a tight end for the New England Patriots. Tight ends are big dudes who block and catch the ball. Gronkowski is arguably one of the best tight end of all time. He’s also known for partying, drinking, and being, well, a dude you’d want to hang out with when you were in college if you were into partying and drinking, and how could you not have been.)
Every time I want to say fuck, shit, goddamn, or anything I’d prefer my child not repeat, I’m going to substitute the appropriate form of “gronk” (assuming there is an appropriate form of gronk). Instead of being shitfaced, I’ll be gronkfaced. Oh wait, no I won’t because I don’t talk about being shitfaced around my kid. When I’m watching football and the Bears are playing like shitballs — I mean, gronkballs — instead of yelling, “Fuck!” I’ll yell, “Gronk!” If things are going well, instead of saying “Fuck yeah!” I’ll say, well, “Gronk!” or maybe even “Yo soy fiesta!” When somebody gets jacked up, I’ll say that he got gronked, or well I guess I could just say he got jacked up because that’s not a swear. Oh man, this is hard.