Unlike formal swearing, casual swearing is not constrained by a set of rules that must be followed. A "swearing jacket" is not donned prior to casual swearing, nor the accouterments of the swearing jacket, such as the cussing handkerchief. Casual swearing may be performed standing or sitting, and gentlemen need not rise when a lady is swearing casually. Casual swearing's growing popularity may be due to the ability to respond to casual swearing in kind, rather than needing to write out a card. Many people prefer the immediacy and convenience of returning foul language as it is spoken, rather than taking the time to craft a written response to formal swearing.

Although it is casual, there is still etiquette associated with casual swearing:

Right: Please pass the fucking meatloaf.
Wrong: Please pass that shitty meatloaf.

It is easy to cross the line between casual swearing and formal swearing, which leads to great confusion for all present. In the case above, the hostess, rather than accepting your statement as a jovial example of casual swearing, will believe you are expressing doubt as to the quality of her meatloaf and may call for a duel (as is her right).

Right: Well, motherfuck.
Wrong: Motherfucker!

When using casual swearing to comment on a general state of affairs, it is important to use the correct tone and, even more so, the correct form of the swear word you mean to employ. To do otherwise results in a lack of clarity.

Right: Your Companion: What a fucking waste of $20.
Yourself: Yes, those banana peels were a bullshit waste of money.
Wrong: Your Companion: What a fucking waste of $20.
Yourself: Yes, those banana peels were a fucking waste of money.

In conversation, it is important to vary the casual swearing attached to a particular topic or subject. Repeating the same swear word your companion used implies that you are not very interested in the conversation and have nothing of substance to add to it. If you continually converse this way, you may find you are left off the guest list at parties and turned down when you call for a date.

Right: I want a refund because your salesman stated that these plastic sheets protect a mattress from shit and piss, and so I inferred they would protect my mattress from stains from fucking, which they do not.
Wrong: I want a refund because these fucking plastic sheets suck.

One must never use casual swearing in a situation requiring formal swearing. Some people believe the two are interchangeable on the west coast of the United States, but this is true only in a few very specific locales (mostly colleges). Where formal swearing is called for, casual swearing leads to the swearer not being taken seriously. In professional swearing circles, such behavior often leads to the swearer being stripped of membership privileges.


Used properly, casual swearing is fun and rewarding. Hopefully this guide has illustrated how to reap its fucking benefits.

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