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Unwelcome profanity and other bad manners

January 06, 2008

Regarding "A Bleeping Part of the Job" [Dec. 16]: I am not a prude, but at 65 I have heard all the curse words, including during a stint in a frontline combat unit in the Army in Germany in the early '60s where some NCOs could not mouth a sentence without a few choice vulgarities. In junior high school an English teacher asked several of us to read "The Naked and the Dead" by Norman Mailer. I remember asking Mrs. Stevens what the word "fug" meant, and she said it was a replacement for a vulgar four-letter word also starting with "F."

So how can office profanity promote solidarity? I cannot be with a woman who smokes, cusses, indulges in street drugs and runs her fingers though her hair as a nervous gesture. Also, why do so many teens and adult men keep their caps on inside a room? I have been in an upscale restaurant and, sure enough, some yahoo is wolfing down a meal, oblivious to what anyone in the military has known -- hats off! What gives? But as long as men are in church in golf shirts, what can I say? Then again, I hate seeing grown men with an untucked dress shirt, sometimes with a sport jacket. What the . . . ?

Michael Difani

Riverside

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