OH! Blank-a-tee-Blank!


Who needs words?
We make them up when we need them!

Story by Brian V. Brunner('64)
Powder Springs, GA - 8/16/01

The idea to do this story came to me while I was watching Saturday Morning Cartoons with my six year old grandson a couple of weeks ago.

The characters in the cartoon were grade school children that decided they would make up a word that could be used instead of "Hell", "Damn", or "Sucks". Those words were not used of course, but that was the general idea I got form the story. They came up with a word that sounded like "Wumps" or "Whumps". So they would say, "Man! That wumps!"

That took me back to this story…

As all of you alumni know there is a rule against "Swearing or using profane language" at LWMA. In my copy of the 1964 "Cadet Regulations" under General Futch I see there was no set number of demerits for "Profanity" as such. In paragraph 11.02 in the "the special punishment" section that is above the general demerits list is this: "k. Swearing or using profane language." And there is also a rule under "Miscellaneous Information", paragraph "q. IMPROPER LANGUAGE: The use of profane or improper language is prohibited." This was considered above the normal 5, 3, 2, or 1-demerit(s) rules. In other words you get your name on a Special Order report with 10 demerits and restriction to the campus for x number of weeks or a month or work detail for a month for using profanity. I don't have the current regulation book, but I have one from 1996 that has this rule in it: "i. Profanity (8 Demerits)" as well as paragraph "q." I assume the current rulebook has very similar rules in it.

I think that in "Real Life" in the 1960's awarding 5 demerits was the common punishment for the offense of profanity. As you can guess from seeing movies such as "Full Metal Jacket" and all LWMA Alumni know, this was one of the most ridiculous rules ever created for an all boys' military school. I'm sure it made the parents feel good, but when no adults were around we cussed like those guys in the real military or any other group teenage boys will do. That meant that if you were written up for using profanity, it was only because you let some word slip out in front of a teacher, a staff officer, or somebody's parents.

To write up a fellow cadet for profanity was one of the worst social blunders on campus. The blunder was on the part of the cadet officer or non-com that turned the offender in. This could happen when a cadet becomes a corporal for the first time and is a little too zealous enforcing the rulebook. I don't remember who the poor over zealous cadet was who started all this, but I will always remember the "profane" word that was made up and how it was used. Whenever the offender entered the dayroom and the cadet who was written up was there, he and his friends would start shouting, "Oh! Hockeypoo!" this, and "Oh! Hockeypoo!" that.

In this case, "Oh! Hockeypoo!" was used to make the poor soul feel stupid and I guess it worked, because I don't think that it happened again that year.

I know that later I used "Oh! Hockeypoo!" when I wanted to cuss but could not. You have my permission to use it yourself if you want to. It sounds silly and people will look at you like you are crazy, but you can tell them this little story and they will smile too.

Better yet, try saying it out loud with a heavy highbrow English accent!

OH! Hockeypoo! It's getting late, got to go, goodnight all ...

Return to the Stories Contents Page.

Return to the Alumni Home Page.