I love Mark Twain

mark twain life hack

Let me just say – I didn’t care all that much for Huckleberry Finn when I read it in high school, but I love Mark Twain. In fact, I think he was brilliant. Read a selection of his quotes sometime, and just let the wisdom in. For example.

“To succeed in life, you need two things: ignorance and confidence.”

“It is better to keep your mouth closed and let people think you are a fool than to open it and remove all doubt.” Yep, I’ve learned that one the hard way.

“It’s no wonder that truth is stranger than fiction. Fiction has to make sense.”

And my favorite, at least today: “Under certain circumstances, profanity provides a relief denied even to prayer.” Amen, Samuel. Amen.

Now, this last, I admit, probably rings so true for me because I am an accomplished swearer. In fact, the original title of this post was going to be “I Say Fuck. A Lot.”

Which I do. I’m not proud of this, mind you. I’ve heard it said that people who resort to profanity do so because their vocabulary is insufficient to express themselves otherwise. I happen to take offense to this, because I actually believe my vocabulary to be excellent. I love words. I love certain words for the way they sound in my mouth, others for the way they look on the page, others for what they mean. I would rather say turquoise or lapis or cerulean than blue, (and yes, I stole that example from Miranda Priestly in The Devil Wears Prada, but who cares? it’s late, and I’m tired. so sue me). The point is, my vocabulary is not lacking. I have more than enough words at my disposal to adequately articulate my thoughts, ideas, and emotions. But sometimes nothing quite does the job like a well-timed four letter word. And no four letter word in existence has quite the same impact as the one that begins with an f and ends with a k.

A friend of mine once expressed the idea that one could not be a truly accomplished curser (as he was) unless he or she could use the word fuck as a noun, a verb, and an adjective. Something which, I should point out, I can do quite well. As I said, I’m not proud of it. Not really. In fact, rarely does a New Year arrive that I don’t jot down “stop cursing so much” on my list of soon-to-be-broken resolutions. But the point is, as I said earlier, that I say fuck. A lot. And I did so more than usual today. It was just one of those days. You know those days. They happen to all of us, and today it was my turn.

The details are irrelevant, but suffice it to say it was the kind of day that ended with me Googling “how to get diarrhea out of carpet.” Which is now on my permanent short list of “things I never want to do again ever, but especially after a long day at work, and even more especially when the carpet is the palest shade of cream possible, which is to say essentially white.” (I didn’t choose the carpet, I should mention – it was already here when I bought the house last year, and my plan, seeing as how I have two dogs and three cats, was to get rid of it immediately and install wood floors, which is what I had in my previous home. Lovely, hundred year old, original heart of pine floors to be exact. Oh, how I miss them. That is, until the estimate I got for the hand-scraped hickory I had picked out was fourteen thousand dollars, so the wood floors are waiting awhile.)

Fortunately, I don’t have a terribly weak stomach, but cleaning up liquid shit (calling it diarrhea doesn’t change the fact that it is, in fact, liquid shit) is still not my idea of a roaring good time. Also, it’s not easy. Google, for the record, wasn’t much help. In the end, I literally scraped as much of said shit as carefully as possible off of the carpet with a steak knife that is now in the garbage can out in the garage, and deposited it in a plastic grocery bag. Then I treated the carpet as best I could with a solution designed for pet stains on carpet/upholstery, and I’ll be calling the carpet cleaners first thing in the morning. God willing, they can come out tomorrow, so that, hopefully, I don’t have to be faced with either biting the bullet for the wood floors, replacing the carpet, or living with three large brown spots that will never be able to be mistaken for anything other than what they are smack in the middle of my (God help me) almost-white (at least before the Night of the Liquid Shit) carpet.

So yeah. I’d say fuck just about covers it.


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