The other day girlfriend told me that her nursing aide referred to her “flower.” Which apparently isn’t that uncommon–it’s an endearing term for vagina that was new to US.
After the predictable hilarity (“I must prune my flower. Or water it. Trim it.” Just fill in the blank and know we laughed our flowers off.)
Where was I?
Oh yes, after the predictable hilarity, I started to think. Which can be dangerous.
Because, as you know, I have a bone to pick with our newish need to toss the terms penis and vagina around like they were fetch toys.
Now, just to head off what you’re thinking: I’m a doctor’s kid and we were taught young to use the proper terms for our private parts. The anatomically correct ones.
However, we never did think we needed to see the terms in every essay or on every TV program in a way that looks suspiciously like attention-getting.
Now, I don’t have a problem with using proper terms for these body parts. But I do have a problem with hearing them every time I turn around.
Vagina just isn’t a very pretty word. The “g” is harsh. Penis isn’t much better.
Flower? It’s lovely. Everything the word connotes is lovely. Even Georgia O’Keeffe got it:
Now, in my culture, when we talk about these things, we use various Italian words that are meant to be funny. And in the discussion about “flowers” we called those Italian terms all out loud, because we were five Italian-Americans having some after-dinner laughs.
But in the end, we decided we liked “flower” pretty well.
Better even. And I’m going to adopt it as my new term.
Flower. Yes, I like the sound of it.
You? What do YOU like? and how do you feel about seeing the words vagina and penis all over the place?