I've been a little challenged with stress lately. And sometimes when I'm stressed out I get hot-headed and my language gets ... ummm... a little bit ... ummm... salty. I think it's a throwback to my sailor days. Or something.
I hate when I do that, though.
I hate when my frustration and anger takes over my tongue and I blurt four letter words. Not around the Grands or anything. But definitely around Mr. Jenny. And sometimes just around me!
I developed a new technique to deal with this problem.
I decided to come up with an obscure word and make myself mutter it 10 times or so before I allow a swear word to pass my lips.
After great deliberation I came up with the word "Mozambique".
Obscure enough that I have to make myself concentrate on remembering it, and a cool word to say over and over again, too! AND IT'S TOTALLY WORKING!
For over a week now, my swearing has been reduced to only one single, itty bitty time...but that involved... well...never mind. It doesn't really matter what it involved, but I only slipped once...and then immediately gathered my self-restraint by chanting Mozambique about 39 times in a row.
It was pretty zen.
...last night, Mr. Jenny really put my little word to the ultimate test with this conversation:
Mr. Jenny: The Mozambique thing really seems to be working.
Me: Yup. It's silly but it's definitely helping...and I feel a lot less stressed out, too.
Mr. Jenny: That's great. You do know what Mozambique is, don't you?
Me: Of course.
Mr. Jenny: Well? What?
Me: Well, what what?
Mr. Jenny: Well, what is it?
Me: Sigh, it's an ummm.... city?
Mr. Jenny: Ummm.... no. Close.
Me: It's a country? Right? I meant to say country.
Mr. Jenny: Yup. It's a country. Do you know where it is?
Me: Yea. Of course. It's on the earth, d'oh.
Mr. Jenny: Ummm.... how about being just a little bit more specific?
Mr. Jenny: Why what?
Me: Why do you want me to tell you? Don't you know where it is?
Mr. Jenny: I know where it is, but do you?
Me: Sigh. Of course, I do. It's ummm.... ummm.... really close to India right?
Mr. Jenny: Ummm.... no...guess again.
Me: No. Leave me alone. You are a geography bully.
Mr. Jenny: No, I'm not. It's just important to know these things.
Me: (starting to lose my temper) Mozambique, Mozambique, Mozambique, Mozamb...
Mr. Jenny: Maybe you should know where it is, if you're going to say it.
Me: Mozambique, Mozambique, Mozam...
Mr. Jenny: It's in Southeastern Africa. Right between the Indian Ocean and Zimbabwe.
Me: Mozambique, Mozam...
Mr. Jenny: And, of course, it is South of Tanzania and right by...
Me: Shut up. I don't care.
Mr. Jenny: Of course you care...Zambia is...
Me: Shut up. I really, really don't care. Go away.
Mr. Jenny: Of course you care...Malawi is...
Me: Mr. Jenny? Seriously. Stop. You are ticking me off.
Mr. Jenny: And Swaziland is...
Me: Mr. Jenny? Mozambique off!
Mr. Jenny: What? What did you say to me?
Me: You heard me. Mozambique off! Leave me and my anger management technique alone. Yea! You heard me! Mozambique off!
See how it works out really well?
My only suggestion is if you pick a word that is a place, you should know where it is.
Especially if you live with a geography bully.
And you know what else?
Even though I have a very Mozambiqued-up life sometimes...
...at least I have my anger issues kinda/sorta under control now.