Slate's TV Club was worried about a scene from The Wire in which an editor is chastised for cursing in the newsroom. Is that even possible? (It's getting that you can't even tell a female coworker she has a nice rack anymore!) Romenesko solicited swearing-in-the-newsroom tips, and reporters and former copyboys everywhere responded. What the fuck did they say?
From JOHN RUSSELL: One of my first editors was a smart, talented woman who loved to swear, not just in frustration, but in everyday chit-chat. I still remember the day, 20 years ago, when I heard her end a phone call like this: "Thanks, Sheriff. Now I owe you TWO blow jobs."
From PATRICK M. OLSEN: I will say, though, that in the newsroom of the San Bernardino County Sun back in heyday of "Seinfeld," we were asked not to say the phrase "Master of my domain" (from the classic episode "The Contest") because it made one of our colleagues very uncomfortable.
From ALAN CHOATE: I spent a couple of years at the Daily Herald in Provo, Utah, where most of the news staff was raised in the Mormon church. LDS folks keep their language so clean it's even a joke to them... The best, though, was one evening when the newsroom was tuned into a football game. The ref made a bad call, and one of the sports reporters — a SPORTS REPORTER, for crying out loud — jumped up and said, "What the fruit?"
From STEVE SMITH, editor, Spokesman-Review: [My] editor was a true artist, a Van Cliburn of obscenity, combining words and phrases in new and exciting ways, breathing new life into the old standards and bringing to the fore little-known alternatives, all in a distinctive, clear voice that carried across the newsroom... don't tell me our journalism wasn't just a little bit better when the editor could walk out in the newsroom and call an asshole an asshole.