Profanity Bingo

You might wonder, on Day 18 of my 300-Day Brainstorm, how my mental health is doing. In lieue of an answer, dear reader, I present thee with today’s idea: Fucking Bingo.

Imagine, instead of yelling BINGO! when you get five in a row, you get to yell “DICKS! DICKS! DICKS!”

Or perhaps, the more formal “Fuckety Shit von-Assholington of Dicksville!” Or maybe, just turning over the entire bingo table and pissing on the cards. Fucking Bingo is about expressing the inexpressible in the most deranged manner we can summon. It’s about letting loose.

So, you can see how my brainstorm is going. I’m starting to feel a little giddy.


It seems like people use the term “giddy” to mean really happy about something. But I think of it more as a rebellious joy. Silliness in the face of adversity. That feeling of cathartic exhaustion bubbling up into something unexpected. Something good.

The pivotal moment when life turns over and boils over into a benign insanity. Hilarity.

It’s what makes someone speak in tongues at church. It’s what makes people do drugs.

Getting drunk is really just the permission we’ve all been waiting for to tear down all Institutions of Seriousness.


’70s music journalist Ellen Willis wrote of the Velvet Underground’s “Beginning to See the Light:”

“{It} made me think of a description of a peyote high by a Beat writer named Jack Geen: ‘A Group of us, on peyote, had little to share with a group on marijuana; the marijuana smokers were discussing questions of the utmost profundity and we were sticking our fingers in our navels and giggling.’ In ‘Beginning to See the Light,’ enlightenment (or salvation) is getting out from under the burden of self-seriousness, of egotism, of imagining that one’s sufferings fill the universe; childlike innocence means being able to play.”

I think my brain just wants to play.

Giddiness is a triumph of the human soul. To borrow some really despicable language, it’s a last-ditch effort to make things great again. It’s the moment when tragedy turns into comedy.

It’s high-fiving because we’re all totally and completely fucked, the inspiration that caused these geniuses, The Nix Bros., to make this video. It’s what’s lying darkly beneath all of us, ready to be coaxed out of us in some bland team building exercise here. (That second video? Mom, if you’re reading this, I’m telling you please don’t watch that video. Contrary to how the video starts out, it’s not for the faint of heart. And should be watched till the end, for those choose to indulge.)

In case you’ve made it this far, this blog was less about the idea (which is, a game of Bingo where you get to yell profanity when you win), and more about capturing a feeling.

In Nirvana’s “Tourettes,” it almost seems like he’s using Tourette’s as an excuse to yell belligerently about a broken heart. It’s just the permission he needs to go there.

Out of town, out of sight, is my heart
Queen of lies, today, my heart
One more on the phone, my heart
One more at the door of my heart

Mean heart
Cold heart
Cold heart
Cold heart
Cold heart
Cold heart
Cold heart
Cold heart


Sigh. Screaming Kurt Cobain was my teenage spirit animal.

When my four-year-old daughter is being naughty in that totally giddy way, smiling knowingly at me like an infomercial host, the part that makes me angriest is not her bad behavior. It’s that she’s turning me into the hoary institution to rebel against. I am the Institution of Seriousness. I am the weight of profundity.

Don’t you know who I am? I make jokes about butts all the time.


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