Let Us Never Spell It “Cum” Again

In this week’s New York, sex columnist Maureen O’Connor dedicates some attention to the delicate art of ejaculation and the myriad places it can land on the body. She delves into the conundrum of where to aim the cannon, as it were, and what parts of the body are preferred for receiving said substance. What is most curious, as The Hairpin points out, is this editorial aside, regarding the spelling of the word for both performing the act itself (verb) and the substance that is ejaculated (noun):

(Note that, when it comes to the spelling of cum, I defer to the Strunk and White of filth, the Vice style guide. Come is the verb, cum the resulting substance.)

The Hairpin takes a firm stance. “Cum” as a word is decidedly not okay. “Cum” looks cheap and tawdry and icky. That said, it’s a loaded (sorry) enough question to warrant further discussion.

Infographic: The Cum Rag Hierarchy
Read it, print it, share it, WIPE IT UP.

“I came,” “he’s coming,” “we came at the same time.” “There’s a dash of come on the hem of my skirt; could you kindly fetch me a tissue?” In these applications, “come” works. It is both the noun and the verb. This sits right. Sure, there are other words. You can jizz into a sock, splooge into your open palm, explode with a power so forceful that you hit the wall behind you. These are all appropriate ways to describe the act when you’re a teen, exploring the mysterious power of your own penis. When you’re an adult — someone who sexts under your desk and maybe sends a requested dick pic from the bathroom of your office — these words lack the ability to communicate your desire plainly.

A text that says “I can’t wait to splooge all over your tits” is not a text that will be returned. A text that says “come” instead will more likely be entertained. The word is so simple that it just works. “Cum” is best left in the past, with your jack-off socks and that homemade Fleshlight you once made out of a gently-warmed, overripe banana and a Ziploc baggie. Leave it in the dark. Come into the light. (And don’t forget to learn the bet way to clean up.)

[The Cut]

[The Hairpin]