THE PLANK AUGUST 13, 2009
My father is an ex-Navy man. So it was perhaps to be expected that, growing up, my sister and I Iearned pretty much everything we needed to know about profanity from watching Dad injure himself while performing household chores. (The day he inadvertently jabbed a pair of needle-nose pliars up his nostril was especially educational.)
Now it turns out that all that swearing may actually be good for him. Today's WaPo "Health" section includes a story from the Chicago Trib (Good news! Soon the Post will be able to publish without any reporters at all!) about the pain-relieving properties of swearing. In a nutshell, swearing prompts a person's flight-or-fight response, which ups their pain tolerance.
But don't get too carried away. Next up is research into whether overuse of swearing dulls its benefits.
That could bode ill for outspoken dads everywhere.