When I was younger, I played in bands, and, being somewhat loud-mouthed and extroverted, I tended to be the front man.
One evening while hanging out at a bar where we frequently played, a singer friend of mine gave me some advice regarding my stage act: Stop swearing.
The fact was that, either because I thought it was cool or punk or funny, I would swear on the mic and even cuss in my songs. My friend’s view was that it simply wasn’t necessary. What I was doing was entertaining enough, and I didn’t have to go for cheap laughs by cussing.
I was reminded of my friend’s advice during our recent B2b Forum when several speakers cussed from the podium. To be fair, one was a professional comedian and at least one other was in character, but whenever cussing happened, I was slightly shocked.
Look, I’m no Boy Scout. I cuss quite liberally around my friends, and I laugh out loud at movies where cussing is creatively deployed, but I guess I still have a sense of decorum in business conferences. I understand why someone may cuss in such circumstances—to get people’s attention or make an emphatic point—but, on a gut level, cussing just doesn’t sit well with me.
Am I just an old fuddy-duddy?