Hey diddle diddle, the cat and the fiddle

A cat plays a fiddle

When you’ve already started saying fuck—whether it’s in “I don’t give a fuck” or just a good ol’ naked “Fuck!”—but realize you’re within earshot of delicate sensibilities, fiddle (or fiddlesticks!) is a convenient last-minute mincing. An old word, from fidula in Old High German, fiddle has, since its birth as the name of a stringed instrument, taken on a host of meanings that semantically overlap with fuck to a surprising degree (although much of this overlap is due to fuck’s tremendous versatility). Continue reading