Those of us at Big Legal Brain often shy away from cussing in public. Why? Well, we are prude and countrified, to be honest, and don’t like the crass use of some choice words. It reduces us. But we make a few exceptions, particularly if those exceptions have decent SEO legs and an overall marketing panache. The word “ass” is one of those exceptions, having such a varied and wide use that you should consider putting some ass into your practice. Here are some of the best contemporary choices.
Use asshat for more modern phrasing or to impress the under-30 crowd with your hip sensibilities. Plus, asshat is a superb put-down, essentially saying that you wear an ass on your hat. I think that’s what it means. See also, assmuppet.
Ass Ipsa Loquitor
This phrase, which loosely means “an ass speaks for itself,” is great if used to respond flatly to a hosebag litigator who took up way too much time arguing his or her case. At the close of opposing counsel’s argument, but only after the court asks if you would like to add anything further, roll out this phrase as follows: “Defendant has nothing further, your honor, as Mr. Wells has done a fine job of demonstrating the doctrine of ass ipsa loquitor.” See also, assparrot.
For lawyers into organics and the whole back-to-earth slow food movement, a simple “ass” is the preferred word to use, without any false additives or flashy suffixes. As in “what an ass.” Used singularly and without flourish, it packs some real power. Consider this recent exchange in court:
Court: I just think you got your ass handed to you, counselor.
Mr. Wells: True enough, your Honor, true enough.
Honestly, there is a guy in the law office next to us who goes out of his way to avoid using plain-jane “ass,” saying such ridiculous alternatives as Big Booty Judy, dukie maker, caboose, or pressed ham. Don’t make that mistake. Stick with the original. It just works.
We’re big fans of the suffix “tard,” which can be added to just about anything. For instance, a “digitard” is anyone who is not Carl Malmquist, legal IT genius. Or “lextard” for lawyers who just don’t get it. A simple asstard, however, connotes dumb as well as sleazy. Or someone who wears an excessive amount of cologne to court. See also, bartard, preemptard (the act of editing out a partner’s excessive wordiness in a brief).