Afterward I decided to tweet about the incident, comparing it to a Ron White bit in which he uses the phrase "G" damn it, with "G" standing in for "God".
I don't have any trouble with most swear words: anything scatological or sexual is fair game, although I avoid the "C" word out of deference to Sarah.
But I don't blaspheme if I can help it. I'm not strongly religious, and I'm not afraid of going to hell over it; I just think that one should be careful about invoking a higher power in anger, just in case they decide to answer. It's a weird attitude, but it's mine and I like it.
So when I went to tweet, I had to debate whether to censor the quote. I didn't think it was necessary; if you can use it on the radio, I figure it's fair game on Twitter. And I didn't like the way the tweet looked censored: "G--" damn it lacks the power of the unvarnished blasphemy.
But I still wanted to censor the tweet. It was pure instinct, a gut reaction I couldn't quite shake even while I was hitting the "Send" button. I still have a little voice in my head going "Delete the tweet, delete the tweet" an hour later.
I need to throttle that voice. Lock it in a box and throw away the key. I know what I write, and I know I'm going to be writing a few characters with filthy mouths. And if and when they blaspheme, I'm going to have to let them, or my dialogue is going to stink.
And I'm not interested in writing stinking Goddamn dialogue. So I'll write what I need to write, and eat the soap later.