Friday, May 27, 2005

¡Puedo Joderte!

Apparently some of you consumers out there think it’s funny to put sweary names in places where they’ll end up on mailing lists. And apparently others of you consumers out there don’t think it’s particularly funny to receive mail in your homes when it’s addressed to (and I’m just making these names up for the sake of examples) Asswipe DeLay, Asswipe Scalia, Asswipe Santorum, Asswipe Coulter, Asswipe Lott or Asswipe Cheney. And especially (and I apologize if I offend anyone with this vulgar word) Dubya.

Furthermore, those of you other consumers who are predisposed to being offended by such things are also predisposed to—and I know this may sound shocking—sue the issuers of such direct mail if it besmirches the sanctity of your homes.

So, naturally, when most mailing lists are scoured to remove duplicate addresses and known dead people and such, they’re also scoured to remove names that may be asswipey and offensive.

But you consumers out there are a clever lot, and you also sometimes manage to get names on mailing lists that may sound like garden-variety foreign names to us Americans, but they’re actually foreign swear words.

Naturally, we at the agency where I work don’t want Juan Q. Sample to sue us for calling him Puedo Joderte instead of applying for a low-interest credit card, which is the reason we’re spending so much postage writing to him in the first place.

So recently, the call went out among all our offices for everyone to send all the naughty foreign words we know to our data center so we could build an additional database of foreign words to flag in the scouring process. And I, being the potty-mouthed suave and sophisticated international traveler, was sure I could give them all the words they’d ever need to build the quintessential Database of Names You Should Never Call the Fuckers You’re Trying to Sell Stuff To.

Unfortunately, the list words I could come up with would barely make a slutty little Mexican schoolgirl blush:

chinga madre

I know. I’d never pass as a Latino street tough. But I can ask someone of he or she speaks Spanish in two different languages, so I’m not all Twinkies and instant pudding.

And I definitely know my culo from my cojones. And I can tell you to go fuck yourself in a way that makes you think I may be just ordering fancy tacos. (Not that I ever would.) I can also blink stupidly helplessly at you if you somehow understand me and respond with an order for a deluxe burrito supreme with extra fuckyouverymuch on the side.

Anyway, the point of this endless post is that for one fun-filled afternoon, I actually got paid to write swear words instead of just acting them out in a complex ballet of mime and semaphore in a company email. And that deserves a big woo-fucking-hoo!

(On a related note, I used to work in an in-house agency for a low-budget software company. One of our products was called (and I am not making this up) Atomic Clock. And this one time at band camp, we had a typo in one of our catalogs. And we mailed an offensive word to millions of people around the country. But it was a total accident. And a HUGE overpromise, but that’s a topic for a different post.)

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