Would you be mortified?

I write. It is what I do. It is what makes me feel grounded and balanced, and how I make sense of the world. I cannot remember when I started writing in a journal, but I have a bin or two in a closet that contains all my journals from over the years. I am now slightly inspired to go and find my earliest ones and see has my voice changed? I am sure it has.

So when a colleague told me the other day about “Mortified Nation” I had a nice chuckle. Mortified Nation is a documentary that has just been released where individuals read from their teenage journals. Some of them are funny, some depressing, and some will speak directly to the title: mortified. I am sure I have plenty of journal entries that fall into each of those categories, and some that might lead me down a path to what life truly was like back then. Of course we have our memories, but I wonder if even at a less mature age if the words that flowed from within were telling to what was really going on in our lives?

Would you be mortified to read our teenage journal aloud? What would we find out about you? That you hated your mom, and had a crush on a different boy a week? Who knows but these individuals are brave souls, unless they have the writing ability of David Sedaris’ or their raw honesty just rings a bell in our own nostalgic thoughts of the past.

The documentary was available on iTunes and Amazon on November 5, and in some local theaters over the next 2 weeks.


Words that make you squirm

Moist. Moist. Moist. It does it for me. It adds many grotesque images to my thought. Yuck. Yuck. Yuck. Hole. Crevice. Crotch. Pus. The list could go on. Why, oh why do these words give us such visual images in our thoughts? Why do they cause us to cringe and vomit in our mouths? Maybe it is the connotation of these words. Many of them have to do with body parts, discharge, leakage, etc. They do not bring great visuals to thought (more of the excrement variety) yet how have we become so tainted with visuals?

Recently I found this blog about the word moist and I laughed hysterically. Such a great post sharing all the different nuances for “moist.” Moist cake, damp, wet, the list goes on. But worst (yes, worst of all) is when I hear someone say, “moist panties.” I know it is a joke. I know it is just to mess with me, but it makes me quiver with disgust (even if I do chuckle a bit inside). Not what you expected in a random olio blog post? Well it is random, and it does happen, sometimes you just have to think of the stuff that goes unsaid. Yes, I am the one that just says what is on my mind.

This “Guardian” article mentions a few other words that make folks grossed out, but none of them really make me shudder. Phlegm does not bring the best visual to mind, but that is only after reading David Sedaris recent book “Let’s Explore Diabetes with Owls” where he talks about the nature of phlegm in China, where it is everywhere — the subway walls, streets, you name it. His description is hilarious. So much so, that I read it out loud to Chris to see if it resembled his experience during his many trips to China.

I guess it all depends on what era you grew up in, as this NPR article lists moist, phlegm, and slacks as the worst words ever. Slacks? Seriously? It is not the 1950’s. My grandma abhorred wearing slacks until her final years, as though it was a sin to be able to just be comfortable, right? I guess I will have to create a better word for moist, since I live in one of the moistest climates in the US, and there are days and weeks that it is never dry. While we do not have that gross, moist, humidity, it seems like that word is just part of the Portland vernacular.

What words gross you out and leave visual imprints in your mind?