“F*ck, wank, bugger, shitting, arse, head, and hole” — Billy Mack, 2003
While every day delivers a pretty spurious sounding scientific study to our inbox, this one, from 2015, sounds pretty f*cking good to us.
There’s been a long-held opinion that people who swear a lot must be of a lower intellect, and use cuss words due to a lack of imagination or vocabulary. Psychologists Kristin Jay, of Marist College, and Timothy Jay, of Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts, set out to debunk this myth, by conducting a study to see just how smart chronic swearers are.
Participants from different demographics were asked to list as many naughty words as possible in 60 seconds (descriptive swear words and slurs were both acceptable, though descriptive swear words prevailed amongst those with an overall greater vocabulary. One
mad c*nt subject submitted “cum-dumpster”. Another proffered “ass-pirtate”. Seriously this study must have been a f*cking hoot to carry out.) They were then assessed on overall vocabulary, and underwent so-called FAS tasks, which are standardised verbal fluency tests.
The results showed that those with a greater vocabulary not only had more filthy language in their repertoire, they were far more capable of using it creatively and uniquely.
There’s also evidence to suggest that people who swear more are happier, and more trustworthy, as swearing is both a therapeutic, effective form of stress relief, and a sign that somebody is less likely to mince their words, sugarcoat, or lie.
In short, you should probably make more friends with people who have a potty mouth. They might say f*ck a lot, but at least you’ll know they’re probably not spouting bullshit.