let swagger die.

somewhere around the time that cam’ron decided to hold a press conference to discuss the chancleta issue, the word “swagger” should have received the pete rose treatment.

A Swagger Eulogy

swagger at some point referred to a specific type of movement one would make when walking. over the years, due to the dynamic nature of language, swagger has transformed into not just a style but the undeniability of success in style. both the cocky athlete & the boastful rapper are harbingers of swagger. the worldwide leader and hip-hop have both marketed swagger as an acceptable & unacceptable product to be consumed by the masses. the aforementioned athletes & entertainers along w/politicians, cooks & your grandma’s lawn clogs are all said to have some form of swagger. if everybody has swagger, then how is anybody with it special? because of it’s overuse, the word swagger has become omnipresent and has lost all meaning.

i wish i could call for a moratorium, but i feel we are way beyond that point. we need to erase this word from our collective vocab now. i know it’s gonna be difficult for so many of you that have relied on swagger to describe everything from the reaction after a referee’s technical foul call to the new design of the cherry coke can but i’m here to help you.

it’s okay to use an example of actual swagger in action to describe the swagger that you are claiming your subject has (re)gained. royce taking the circular route when explaining why russian roulette + your flow in a bullet = safer than rounding third w/Damon in the outfield is bad meets evil on the swagger meter. it’s a verbal fuck you to the rhyme structure at that point and an audible reset for the next barrage of lyrical fury. only one w/a wealth of actual swagger could do what he does at that point in that song.

[audio:black milk feat. royce da 59 guilty simpson -sta- remix.mp3]

talk about Carmelo goin’ w/two hands after double crossing manu “is-propecia-spanish-for-rogaine” ginobili over at the wing area. it wasn’t enough to hit him w/one crossover, he had to double it up like his teammate once did to his airness. the point where it reaches swagger, hwvr, is when my ‘melo my man proceeded to remain calm as he elevated to bang w/two hands and trotted up the court giving his opponents the silent treatment.

even w/out the youtube links, you should still be able to catch the gleam off the back of ginobili’s dome piece through the dust being left off of carmelo’s playoff edition M3’s. if not, i got you w/the video. readers want something that can provide a mental picture, something (bordering on) literary, something we want to talk about later. when links & video aren’t an option, paint a picture. of course, those of you w/blogs need to provide links; no excuses. in either case, stop using that lazy ass word.

the phrase “lost [it’s/their/his/ya mom’s] swagger” is the worst of all offenses. it’s so weak and cliche that it’s basically a writer attempting to break the fourth wall to let you know that he no longer gives a shit, is exclusively reliant on autotext and has decided to cease providing you with insight or nuance. because the large majority of these offenders are males writing to a supposed male audience about the male-dominated fields of hip-hop or sports, you’d think that we’d see a higher increase in the usage of the word “flaccid.” big pun intended, but that’s a hard ass word right there. it’s so hard, remy ma’s “baggy magnum” begins to echo in your cranium when you read that word. bob dole is on your screen and he’s tryna sell you blue diamonds without the purple horseshoes. your wondering if what “they say” is true and have scheduled an appointment to go see the doctor.

i understand that some of you writers actually do interviews and may worry about your subjects actually reading what you write. it may not be in your best interest to directly question the masculinity (virility, actually) of some of these professional sweaters (that’s perpiration, B) and spitters, so i understand why you would steer away from that word.

if making an attempt to use emasculating language is a bit much for you and you don’t want to go that hard against your target, you can use these fashionable references:

  • go with “chancleta-clad.”
    birkenstocks & evisu isn’t a good look. ever. although young cam is probably the reason the word flew over the tark on jetskis, the word chancleta is instant hilarity.
  • use “not-akon-yet-rockin’-a-sweater”
    here’s lookin’ at you cam. and, seriously, you claimed millionaire status while rockin’ the same sweater you did while “on trial” in your straight to the ‘net video. true swagger, my dude, is never eBangin’. thugs w/a computer wasn’t even a good hook, it’ll never be a good look.
  • the classic “cosby-sweatered”
    w/the current climate of slightly older to really fuckin’ old people blamin’ the world’s ills on two turntables and a microphone, i’m sure it’ll be pretty easy to draw a comparison to the Cos’ and “the cause” as a means of illustrating how out of touch & unhip those devoid of swagger are.

to summarize: don’t ever type the fuckin’ word swagger, again. write something w/a reference that a person can use to pull a specific example from their own mental rolodex (next on the list) or link to actual swagger in progress. for the absence of swagger, those w/out the glow are allenesque, limp (dick, wrist, bizkit) or poor dressers.

special note (re: summary): some poor dressers entire swagger is embodied by their poor dress.

special note (re: (re)clamation): SWAG is acceptable and still phenomenal.

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