Why I Am Avoiding DBC Pierre

Not one motherfucker in the States says “fucken.” What was the point in spelling it this way? If we are to look at this from a phonetical standpoint, it comes across as “PHUCK-EN” (not to be confused with “PHUCK-IN,” aka “PHUCK-EEN,” often used in tandem with the first letter of the alphabet in expressing surprise and very good in a sentence like “I was fuckin’ Joaquin Phoenix”).

If DBC Pierre had substituted “fuck me,” “fuck you” or “motherfucker” instead of “fucken,” then there’d be no problem. There would instead be verisimilitude. But the conundrum stands: Pierre/Finlay/Whatever the Fuck Pseudonym That Booker Winner is Using Today seems to think that we Yanks say “fucken ‘ell” a lot, or some truncated version thereof, which is a very Brit thing to say in terms of phrasing and pronunciation.

And besides, when it comes to intransitive verbs, Americans are inclined to shorten “ing” to “in.” We just hate those fucking Gs. Plus, the idea of following a great word like “fuck” with something as dour as “en” just doesn’t mesh with the American character. And, as such, the “en” thing is about as American as pronouncing the last letter of the alphabet “zed.” Perhaps because deep down inside, we Yanks want to “fuck in,” implying a desire for indoor copulation. Whereas “fuck en” implies entropy, sex begrudgingly begun to appease the s.o. and get through the night, the obligatory task.

Well, fuck that. And fuck fuckin’ Vernon God Little.


  1. A shame; Vernon God Little wasn’t bad. He’s an Aussie, of course, and we do pronounce it fucken. Or fuckin. (To be precise, fuck–n, where – equals schwa.) Also, he was writing about Texans – what’s the word on their fucken pronunciation?

  2. Oh man,that whole fucken business annoyed the crap out of me too. Just one of many things that made me toss the book before page 50. I kept shaking my head wondering why it won the Booker. I wonder how VGL will be remembered in 20 years.

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