Cussing Game

By Wixx

My grandfather used to do this when I was a kid. If I caught him cussing he would put money in a cuss box for me. If he said little cusses like damn and hell or ass when not talking about a donkey, it was worth a nickel. Of course the game part of it was that I had to call him on it within ten seconds. So he would sometimes say “what the hell” and then count to ten. At first I was thinking why is he counting, then it registered but he would get to ten before I said anything.

Once ten seconds expired he would say, “oh boy, you missed that one.” If he said anything more than the “little” cusses, but not the f word I could get a dime. These were not usually said just to catch me, but he would accidentally blurt out a phrase or two if he hit his thumb with a hammer or tripped over a chair. This was a fun thing between he and I, as even while his thumb was throbbing he would laugh when I said, “You owe me thirty five cents for that outburst gramps!”

When I busted him using the F word it would benefit me in the way of a quarter. This one he had a problem with as he was a sailor. This was compounded by the fact that he would say it again when I busted him, especially if I did it in a certain way, like gloating or singing. “You said the F word, I get a quarter.” He would say “Oh F.” which brought about my singing of “You said it again, and other quarter for me.” And the cycle continued.

This was in the 1970s, so with inflation I think the F bomb could be worth a dollar in today’s world. Of course, this would keep my wallet empty and that is why I do not play this game with my children! My grandmother liked the game because she thought it kept my grandfather from swearing so much. My heavy piggy bank showed otherwise.