In the tradition of mid-winter sadomasochism, people all over the world will wake up on January 1st with a renewed force of will to cease unsavory habits and hate themselves while trying.
While some will attempt to stanch years of deeply embedded compulsions during the most depressing month of the year, others will try to adopt more accessible behaviors, like reading more, improving their vocabulary, or limiting profanity. If you’re looking for a way to freshen up your personal argot, SF can help! With words like ‘frak’ and ‘frell,’ sci-fi TV and movies have added a few new words to the pop culture lexicon, but speculative fiction novelists are the master coiners.
Is your New Year’s Resolution to quit cussing or spice up your vocabulary? Try these SF-inspired expletives on for size!
Thank the Bastard! From The Curse of Chalion by Lois McMaster Bujold)
(ex. Thank the Bastard I finally got that demon out of my belly!)
Finagle! From Protector by Larry Niven
(ex. How in Finagle is that woman walking on a Mobius strip?)
Great galloping galaxies! From the Foundation trilogy by Isaac Asimov
(ex. Great galloping galaxies, these men sure do talk a lot!)
Shards! From Dragons of Pern series by Anne McCaffrey
(ex. Shards if I can figure out why my telepathic dragon won’t tell me anything useful!)
Godspit! Jabber! From Perdido Street Station by China Mieville
(ex. For Jabber’s sake, that wyrman exudes a miasma as pungent as godspitting vomit.)
I! Me! I! Me! From A Time of Changes by Robert Silverberg
(ex. erm, to be used in the bedroom, or wherever you get your kicks, ifyouknowwhatimean, butonlyifyou’reanarcissist.)
Clear ether! Blinding blue blazes! From Lensman series by E.E. “Doc” Smith
(ex. Blinding blue blazes! You’d better clear ether or I’ll aim this very dangerous lens at you!)
Snell and rumination! From “Oddy and Id” from the SFFAudio PDF page, by Alfred Bester
(ex. Snell and rumination! This actually sounds like a real curse word!)
Aphrodites’ nipples! From Ilium by Dan Simmons)
(ex. Aphrodites’ nipples! What this Martian Trojan War story needs is dinosaurs!)
Filthy copsik! Treefodder! From The Integral Trees by Larry Niven
(ex. That filthy copsik! My gynecologist just told me a bunch of treefodder just to have sex with me!)
Hot buttered moonbeams! From The Planet Buyer by Cordwainer Smith
(ex. Hot buttered moonbeams, this story is the craziest thing you’ll ever read and the author might be an alien!)
For Time’s Sake! From The End of Eternity by Issac Asimov
(ex. For Time’s Sake, some Asimov fans are godspitting tedious.)
Cut your rockets! From Captain Future series by Edmond Hamilton as Brett Sterling
(ex. Cut your rockets, Grag and Otho, with your silly android vs robot antics.)
Impress your friends! Woo your lovers! Amaze your boss! Any of these SFantastic words and phrases are guaranteed to make you the most entertaining angry person in the room!
Are your favorites missing? Add them in the comments!