Sunday, March 20, 2016
I Do Not Like Orgasm as a Verb
For me, the word “orgasm” has always felt best as a noun. As potentially earth-shaking a noun as it is though, there are challenges in expressing it with appropriate connotation. “Having” an orgasm is a little grabby, “experiencing” an orgasm too distant, and “achieving” an orgasm seems well, self-congratulatory. Other usages can invoke anything from the pornographic through the cloying to the gynecological. As plentiful as these ejaculations are, none of them seem to be wholly satisfying.
In my opinion, we must nonetheless continue to strive, always in search of the right tone, the right bed of verbs and adjectives upon which to present our orgasms so they are received with the romance, lust, piety or combination of the three we intend. And we must do this is as a means of fighting the recent rise of the word “orgasm” as a verb: I orgasmed here, I orgasmed there ... it’s just terrible. It is present in all dictionaries as a verb, and I don’t like it. Never have. There are a few bright spots in the use of “orgasm” as a verb, notably the future perfect, which states that one will have orgasmed. And who could think of a more perfect future than that? Moreover though, there is a great inelegance to my ear in the verb usage of “orgasm.”
It takes a word that describes the quintessential expression of humanity, and that even in its comparatively benign noun form does so already hobbled by a certain clinical sheen that at the outset handicaps its possibilities for romantic expression. The last thing it needs is to be set into motion, indiscriminate seeds cast helter-skelter with no vision of a higher mind, a view only to procreation rather than civilization; indeed, in verb form, "orgasming" seems naked of any beauty its noun usage might have had.
If we could drive orgasm’s verb form out of common usage if not out of our dictionaries, that would give me indescribable pleasure.