November 19, 2004
Here's a smattering of possible curses from readers to this blog on the "d--d------" question: "dog dingus," comes in from J.Rae, a noted Jesse James aficionado (the story goes that Jesse, as the son of a minister, pinched his finger on a piece of equipment during the Civil War and rather than cuss said, "Dingus!" which stuck as a nickname.) Another possible angle is "Dandydick" which is submitted by D.J. Gobbledick (his alleged nom de plume). Gobble also submitted "dim dickhed" but with the caveat that it is "a term only used for present day Arizona cow-boys."
Someone claiming to be my mother submitted the phrase "dam donkey," but I’m not sure if donkeys ever built dams.
One of the employees of the Arizona Tourism Board who wishes to remain anonymous submitted the guess of "dip doodle," which just might be quaint enough, and obscure, although not very profane.
A certain employee of mine who is whip smart came up with the simple term "deadbeat" which has the "ds" in the right place and would certainly fit the situation since Philip Schneider was a mining engineer and Mike O’Rourke (Johnny-Behind-the-Deuce) was a tinhorn gambler, who was bumming around Charleston. Although it does beg the question, "Why would the paper censor the word 'deadbeat.'?" Another possibility off of this is "deadass," but it doesn’t quite ring true.
Oh, this is interesting. Yesterday I postulated facetiously that maybe it was "deadhead," and just now I looked up the term in my New Dictionary of American Slang (1986) and here's what it says: "deadhead:, from the French, middle 1800s, a nonpaying spectator at a game, show, etc.=FREELOADER." A variation is listed as "deadneck." Also listed: "Deadwood" which also dates from the 1800s and the definition is: "Unproductive persons; lazy and useless staff."
I think the first word being "dog" is pretty strong, and I would guess that the second half of the phrase severely emasculates Mr. Deuce. However, if the dashes were not meant to be taken literally, then that opens up the possibilities even more, such as:
"doodly squat" or "dry donkey" or "dog dick" or "doc dick" or "dog dater" or "dog doo-doo" or "dog doofus" or "dodo dimwit" or "damned dipshit," or "diddle dooker" or "dead deucer" or "defecating dunce" or "dew dancer" (Hey, it could happen!) or "diadromous douchebag" or "dog douchebag" or "dice dick" or "dik-dik" (a small African antelope) or "dyke dancer'"or "dim-witted dickhead" or "ding bastard" or "disdainful disapator" or, maybe not.
Personally, I think "deadneck" and "deadwood" and "deadhead" is pretty tempting to believe, although it sure doesn’t seem offensive enough to censor, does it?
"Every thought is a seed. If you plant crab apples, don't count on harvesting Golden Delicious."
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