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One bad mo-fo

A while ago, I was dating a woman with two teenage sons. One evening, we were all going out to dinner. As typical, the boys were insulting each other in the back seat. We pretty much ignored them, until the older boy called his brother a "mo-fo."

I whipped my head around at that. (Luckily, she was driving.) "Ike, I presume you don't know exactly what that means, do you?"

"Um... nooo..."

"I didn't think so. However, I do. If I EVER hear of you using it again, I'll make sure your mother does, too."

Later, when they were both away from the table (it was a buffet), she bullied me into telling her exactly what it stood for. When he returned she let him have it with both barrels. Sans explanation, though.

To this day, I still wonder if he ever did find out exactly what "mo-fo" is short for... and why it is so bad to call your brother one, while in a car with your mother. I'm still amazed I kept a straight face during the whole incident.


Comments (16)

Unfortunately, if the kid i... (Below threshold)

Unfortunately, if the kid is past 6th grade I'm certain he knows what those words mean.

Reminds me of the ti... (Below threshold)

Reminds me of the time my 9-yar-old kid and his friends came screaming up on their bikes. They hit the skids and tried to look cool.

"Whatcha doing?" I asked.

"PIMPIN'!" my kid says.

This of course had to be addressed, and the explanation of pimps led inevitably to the sex talk.

Nice. Thanks, Snoop. I really needed that moment in my life.

While sitting at dinner wit... (Below threshold)

While sitting at dinner with my husband's boss and his wife my daughter (age 4) became annoyed with her brother (age 8) and called him a bastard. Naturally, I was mortified. They do and say things and we wonder why.

I used the word "bastard" a... (Below threshold)

I used the word "bastard" around my father when I was about eight. I didn't think it was bad, because I'd heard it on TV so many times. And this was 25 years ago, even.

too funny.My oldest ... (Below threshold)

too funny.
My oldest at 24 now...when she was 6 called her dad a faggot!! That left a mark
Did she know what it was she referred to? Probably not but it was entertaining for me watching him deal with it.

It's something we're battli... (Below threshold)

It's something we're battling with ours now, too, now that we put them in a public school. I've been appalled at some of the behaviors and expressions my oldest daughter has come home with. She has no real clue as to their meaning, but I've been very clear about the fact that they're NOT OKAY and that she will NOT employ them at any time, in my presence or out of it.

I am impressed with you that you took the opportunity to make a serious impression on that young man. Way to go, JT.

Well, I hope they never try... (Below threshold)

Well, I hope they never try to look the word up in a dictionary. When I was about 6 years old, I heard my brothers using a word and looked it up: a big cat that lives in the jungle. Hmm. Okay. After I said “You jaguar” the fifth time, they caught on. Then there was the name of the German philosopher. What's the big deal? Then there was the big river in Africa. When my mother heard me say, "You Niger!" I got slapped.

Penn and Teller used to do ... (Below threshold)

Penn and Teller used to do a show featuring Mofo, the psychic monkey.

It was cool.

Also, the major law firm Morrison & Forster is colloquially known as ... well, you know. Seriously.

How old are these boys? Te... (Below threshold)

How old are these boys? Teenagers? I knew what "mo-fo" stood for almost before I knew what the "fo" part meant.

I'm always amazed at the naivete that some are afflicted with. I'd almost feel obliged to explain what "mo-fo"means, just so they wouldn't end up looking stupid in front of their friends.

I'm with Lee. The shocking... (Below threshold)
Mark A.:

I'm with Lee. The shocking part is not the use of the word, but the kids' lack of understanding. The mother's naivete is even more shocking. I'm not sure what cocoon these kids are from, but I think it's safe to say most kids learn the word and its meaning, and learn when and when not to use it, before they graduate from elementary school.

I was going to start in on ... (Below threshold)

I was going to start in on this... but there are too many things too wrong and too many levels here.
And I'm tired.

This post reminds me of the... (Below threshold)
Hangtown Bob:

This post reminds me of the time that my then 11-year old son called one of his friends a "douchebag". I asked him if he knew what that was and when he said "no", I proceeded to give him a very frank and graphic description of what it was and what it was used for. His expression was horrified and he only said "eeewwww". I never heard him say that again.

Reminds me of the time back... (Below threshold)

Reminds me of the time back in the dorms at lovely alma mater when a set of twins would call each other "Bastard" and "Son of a Bitch"

Calvin, he wasn't named "Ik... (Below threshold)
Jay Tea:

Calvin, he wasn't named "Ike." I changed his name to protect him from embarassment. They were Jewish, so changing his name to "Ike" (short for Isaac) wasn't too much of a stretch. He does have a rather old-fashioned name, though.


Amish, man that's funny.</p... (Below threshold)

Amish, man that's funny.

I was an altar boy and the ... (Below threshold)

I was an altar boy and the priest at my parish liked to joke around before Mass. One morning the other altar boys and I were calling each other names and Father decided to jump in. At one point, he called me an "imp." to which I responded... innocently (honest!) "Yeah? well you're a pimp!"

it rhymed with "imp", after all... i figured it meant something similar (not that I knew what "imp" meant at that time either)

I was one of the younger and more innocent altar boys at the time. No one explained why the joviality suddenly ended at that time outside of explaining that it was something I shouldn't have said.






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