Old and new

Someone from Bankers Trust Company sent me the following message in Hong Kong  in 1994, when I had been editing Asiamoney, a British finance magazine with offices in Wan Chai.


Norcen Energy Resources Limited
DATE: October 1, 1994
TO: All Employees
SUBJECT: Communication


It has been brought to my attention that some individuals have been using foul language in the course of normal conversation. Due to the complaints from some of the more easily offended, this conduct will no longer be tolerated.

I do, however, realize the importance of each person being able to properly express their feelings when communicating with their colleagues. Therefore, I have compiled the following phrases so that the proper exchange of ideas and information can continue:


Old phrase                                                                          New phrase


No f--king way!                                                                 I’m not certain that’s feasible.

You’ve got to be sh--ting me.                                             Really?

Tell someone who gives a f--k.                                           Perhaps you should check with...

Ask me if I give a f--k.                                                       Of course I’m concerned.

It’s not my f--king problem.                                                I wasn’t involved in that project.

What the f--k?                                                                  Interesting behavior.


Why the f--k didn’t you tell me sooner?                              I’ll try to reschedule that.

When the f--k do you expect me to do this?                       Perhaps I can work late.

Who the f--k cares?                                                         Are you sure it’s a problem?

He’s got his head up his ass.                                           He’s not familiar with the problem.

Eat s--t.                                                                         You don’t say.

Eat s--t and die.                                                              Excuse me?


Eat s--t and die, motherf--ker.                                           Excuse me, sir?

What the f--k do they want from my life?                           They weren’t happy with it?

Kiss my ass.                                                                 So you’d like my help with it?

F--k it, I’m on salary.                                                       I’m a bit overloaded at the moment.

Shove it up your ass.                                                      I don’t think you understand.


This job sucks.                                                              I love a challenge.

Who the hell died and made you boss?                           You want me to take care of this.

Blow me.                                                                      I see.

Blow yourself.                                                               Do you see?

Another f--king meeting.                                                Yes, we should discuss this.

I really don’t give a s--t.                                                 I don’t think it will be a problem.

F--k you!                                                                      How nice, how very very nice.

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