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An old and possibly racist saying states that in some cultures, there are over 50 words for “snow.” American English has at least as many words for ejaculate, most of which are gross. It seems like now is the time to set the record straight. There should be only one word for this substance and it is likely not what you think it is.

Generally, semen is referred to as “cum,” a terrible word that is nice only for its efficiency: it describes both the substance and the act in one three letter word. Using “come” as the verb is appropriate, but linguistically confusing. Why not refer to both using the same word, instead of this egregious misspelling? The substance itself deserves... better. Something about the way the word is spelled triggers an itch; it’s a deliberate misspelling intended to gesture towards vulgarity and impropriety. Other, more juvenile words for the stuff lack the heft of cum and therefore suffer from neglect: the onomatopoeia of splooge is nice but the word itself, not so much. Any phrase that includes “man” followed by a substance of a creamy or otherwise unctuous nature makes me want to scream. Traditonally, “nut” describes the act but not the substance and is best paired with a verb (“I’m gonna nut” works well, but nuts like peanuts, cashews, etc, already exist); the same rule applies to “wad.” “Spunk” is a word reserved only for Samantha from Sex and the City and “sperm” is far too clinical. None of these words are as good as the best word for semen, which is jizz.

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Jizz. Jizz. JIZZ!

There’s a playfulness to “jizz” that more accurately represents the unintentional humor of the act itself. Everyone involved seems surprised, then ultimately relieved; also as someone who does not have a penis, squirting something out of an appendage that spends most of its time lying dormant like a naked mole rat against its owner’s thigh is an enduring novelty. Being in the presence of an ejaculating penis isn’t everybody’s idea of a good time, but for those who enjoy dick in this fashion, it’s jizz.