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Don't f*cking lie to me

Discussion in 'English Only' started by Phi, Jul 30, 2013.

  1. Phi Senior Member

    USA
    Arabic
    Hi
    I am not sure if i can ask this here but I 'll take a chance. I heard this in a movie.

    << --- Don't f*cking lie to me --- >>

    There was an argue.

    I want to know what does that mean. Is it describing the "lie" or is it a curse to the audience.

    I googled it but didn't find the meaning and an answer to my question. I do apologize for the need to asking it here.

    Thanks
     
    Last edited: Jul 31, 2013
  2. owlman5

    owlman5 Senior Member

    Colorado
    English-US
    Hello, Phi. You sure don't need to apologize for asking the question.

    It's a very common intensifier used by people who don't mind using rough language. Here, it serves to convey to the listener that the person who asks the question is very serious about not being lied to.
     
  3. maxillarypun

    maxillarypun New Member

    Michigan, United States
    American English
    The "f*cking" is cursing. The term "lie" means "to tell an untruth". So there is a curse, but that is to underscore anger.
     
  4. Parla Senior Member

    New York City
    English - US
    "Fucking" is not a curse, and the audience is not being cursed. It's a vulgarism used not to describe the lie but simply for emphasis, to express the speaker's anger at being lied to by the person he or she is addressing.
     
  5. Beryl from Northallerton Moderator

    British English
    Interesting question. It's hard to know how to correctly interpret this, at least in part because we don't how this person conventionally speaks, but also, because we don't know the mores of the people he's addressing. All we know is that there was an argument, which makes for meagre context.

    I think the mainstream interpretation might be one of menace: If you lie to me, you will face unspecified negative consequences.
     
  6. Giorgio Spizzi Senior Member

    Italian
    Hullo, Beryl.

    You say "...I think the mainstream interpretation might be one of menace...", and you may be right, but don't you think the notion of "menace" might be marked not by the presence of the ubiquitous "F" word but rather by the presence of "Don't" together with the rather strong words that follow?
    In other words, couldn't the "F" word be considered a general-purpose Present Participle acting as an adjective to express anger, frustration, vulgarity, etc?

    Best.

    GS
     
  7. velisarius Senior Member

    Greece
    British English (Sussex)
    Posts #3 and 4 should remind us of the different meanings in English for the word "curse". I think it's true to say that the word fucking is a curse (swear) word. It isn't a curse in the sense of "I put my curse on you." I don't know which sense Phi had in mind when he asked the question. Apart from that, I agree with Parla.
     
  8. buoo Senior Member

    Korean
    So please explain, 'Don't fucking lie to me' causes no problem, but 'I'm fucking a man!', which is the sentence I said in reference to myself, as in the sense "Contrary to what you make of me, I'm a grown up. I'm a man!", and which sent my friend into a hysterical laughter, is a f***ing problem. :) Why?

    In both cases, I think fucking works as an intensifier(?) that modifies the whole sentence, not a particular word. In my case, is it just because the wording obviously is prone to a misinterpretation? So, in theory, is it not incorrect?

    "I'm a fucking man" is what I should say, right? Here, fucking is obviously an adjective.
     
    Last edited: Jul 31, 2013
  9. natkretep

    natkretep Moderato con anima

    Singapore
    English (Singapore/UK), basic Chinese
    Yes, it's an intensifer that modifies the whole sentence. Therefore 'Don't fucking lie to me' = 'Don't lie to me' + I'm angry/frustrated. 'I'm a fucking man' = 'I'm a man' + I'm angry/frustrated. You can replace fucking with some other intensifiers - bloody, fricking.

    If you are asking about the positioning of the intensifier, I can't give a definitive answer. I would say somewhere in the middle of the sentence, and where it does not open itself to obvious alternative interpretations. 'I'm fucking a man' does not work because it opens itself to the interpretation, 'I'm have sex with a man'.
     
  10. buoo Senior Member

    Korean
    Thank you, natkretep. So in writing, do you think I can get away with

    'I'm, fucking, a man!'
    ?

    That was a typing chat, actually. I wonder if in speech, people might say 'I'm fucking a man' (with or without comma, because it makes no difference)-- Oh no, definitely with a pause, otherwise it gets the other meaning.
     
    Last edited: Jul 31, 2013
  11. Beryl from Northallerton Moderator

    British English
    >> 'I'm, fucking, a man!' ?

    Not a chance.
     
  12. natkretep

    natkretep Moderato con anima

    Singapore
    English (Singapore/UK), basic Chinese
    I think it's more likely that fucking as intensifier would come before a main verb or a noun. Beyond that, you might need to wait for others (because I don't really use this intensifier myself). I know that for bloody, it can go in the middle of a word (as in 'it was abso-bloody-lutely marvellous!'), so perhaps some level of creativity is possible. (Would abso-fucking-lutely work? I don't know.)

    Also, it's something that's more likely said than written down. So I'm not very convinced about your written versions.
     
  13. Beryl from Northallerton Moderator

    British English
    >> (Would abso-fucking-lutely work? I don't know.)

    Certainly; it's standard tmesis.

    I say mainstream because I think it fair to say that most people don't speak like that, but probably more importantly, most people aren't used to being spoken to in this way.
    I think you'd have to be pretty jaded to absorb that without missing a beat.
    The 'fucking' injects aggression.

    >> In other words, couldn't the "F" word be considered a general-purpose Present Participle acting as an adjective to express anger, frustration, vulgarity, etc?

    Yes, you're right it could do. Under those circumstances the total would mean, 'I know you've just lied to me, and I'm very angry about ... the demonstration of my anger comes in the form of my violating a societal norm in using this taboo word.'
    So much depends on the delivery, and the target.
     
  14. Thomas Tompion Senior Member

    Southwest France
    English - England
    I suspect that fucking is an adverb in Don't fucking lie to me. It's modifying the activity, expressing the speaker's view of it.
     
  15. Giorgio Spizzi Senior Member

    Italian
    A very good point, Thomas.

    GS
     
  16. dadane Senior Member

    New Zealand
    English (London/Essex)
    Wouldn't that depend on where you put the stress in the sentence? There are many ways of saying 'don't fucking lie to me', each with their own nuance.
     
  17. kayve Senior Member

    Moscow
    Russian
    Is that from Scorsese's "Casino", said by Robert DeNiro's character (Sam Rodstein) to his wife? If so, that was certainly an intensifier, as the guy was so f*cking angry about that woman :)
     
  18. Thomas Tompion Senior Member

    Southwest France
    English - England
    I don't think its being a intensifier stops its being an adverb. Maybe that wasn't what you were saying, Kayve.
     

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