puck [puhk]: noun
1. also called Hobgoblin or Robin Goodfellow; a particularly mischievous sprite in English folklore who appears as a character in Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream.
2. ( lowercase ) a malicious or mischievous demon or spirit; a goblin. Derived from the Old English puca.
3. in ice hockey, a black disk of vulcanized rubber that is to be hit into the goal.
4. relating to British computer terms, what is known in the United States as a mouse. (Hey, I've learned something new!)
"Thou speak'st aright;
I am that merry wanderer of the night."
- Shakespeare, A Midsummer Night's Dream
Oh, look! Over there! A distraction!
Okay, now that the scary people with white coats have gone, let's get back to business. I swear this will relate to motherhood, just bear with me.
As every mother has discovered since the dawn of time, the urge to swear like a drunken sailor does not magically disappear with childbirth. If anything, the urge to let loose a string of invectives that would curdle milk, peel wallpaper, cause refined ladies to fall into a faint, and possibly knock the earth off its axis, comes more frequently. Unfortunately, as we all know, one must not teach one's children any interesting words that would cause eyebrow raising from friends, neighbors, teachers, and CPS (because we all know we're just a concerned citizen's phone call away from being officially labeled Worst Mother of All Time). [For the record, CPS has NOT EVER been called about me, however, I've won the *Mother of the Year* award several times. -Katya]
Fortunately, as I mentioned above, I believe in fairies. And they can be a rotten bunch of nasty tricky beasts when they want to (still talking about fairies, not kids). So when my life goes doughnut shaped and crazy, and the urge to vent will not be denied, I yell at the fairies. Or rather, one particular one. By name. He's a nasty little piece of work, and could well be responsible for whatever in.ter.est.ing. thing is going on. If not, I rest assured that whichever one of the nastier ones happens to be nearby making things worse for fun, it probably won't mind being confused with him.
You have probably noticed, of course, that the name also very closely resembles an actual swear word. Throwing it in wherever you don't want to be caught teaching your carefully-listening children the Queen Mother of All Swear Words works pretty well, and it feels just as satisfying, what with the emphatic use of consonants and everything. You might get some hairy eyeballs, because everyone else can hear those awesome consonants as well, but you'll get a pass upon repetition. Best part? If your children want to know more, or are caught using it, make sure they know where it comes from. Yes, that's right, you're not hurling expletives around in front of your child, you're teaching them cultured things, like Shakespeare. Look at you, you're so cultured and classy!
What about people who don't believe in fairies and think they're stupid? Well...I hope you're a hockey fan, that's all. As any worthwhile hockey fan will tell you, a flying puck (lol) can do a lot of damage and engender a lot of cursing. It's probably safe to say that many things that make a mother want to curse will strangely resemble a hockey puck in full-on Demolition Mode. Or if not, Mommy soon will. Either way, that makes the term appropriate for hockey moms too. [I used to have a mean slap shot. Then I became a little less than coordinated. Hmm. I should work on that before the dating years. -K] [Nina's just a scary good shot]
If you're a British mom who thinks fairies and hockey are both stupid and that Shakespeare is stupid as well, I'm afraid you'll have to learn to really revile your computer accessories in order to get the proper tone. Also - what the heck is wrong with you?
Go forth, ladies, and pseudo-curse. You're welcome. Puck will be visiting your home shortly, I'm sure.