Style > Swag

“What chu talkin’ ’bout swagggg?”

It seems like once a year there’s some slang that comes outta nowhere that’s hopped on, abused, misused, and ultimately becomes a cover-all for anything someone does. Well, this term/issue is “swag”. In the realistic lexicon, “swag” was used as an acronym for “Shit (stuff) We All Get”. But now,  swag is just the shortened form of swagger and any and everyone is now claiming they have swag.

See, when I was a youngin, I used my great uncle as my baseline for “swagger”. He was an old Italian dude, clean cut, always had a Lacoste polo or something fresh on. The way that he carried himself with an air of silent confidence was truly something to aspire to.  I was taught the importance of your own personal demeanor and style, which he told me was the key to honing your confidence and learning how to be noticed as soon as you walk in a room, for all the right reasons. But the key component to all of this – style and demeanor.

Dudes nowadays completely destroyed the idea of “swag” by using it to describe themselves when they don’t quite get what it is. Listen – you don’t hafta jump on every term that your favorite rapper uses. It’s like a third world country now, the way dudes are hella late to the party in jumping onto trends. Last week, I happened to overhear a conversation where dude really said,

“Yup, just got outta the mall. I got that new Ecko swag. South Pole everything this year! Dudes aren’t gonna be able to touch me!”

While being beyond outdated, past the point of respectability, and over the expiration date of “Kids Say the Lamest Things” – I was appalled by the fact that this dude was probably a bit over 25, with his hat COMPLETELY crooked and off to the side, with nothing short of hand-me-down gear on as it was. Upon hearing such absurdity being spewed with that type of disregard of self-awareness, I spent the next 10 minutes wandering around with my bitter beer face stuck on.

At the end of the day – everyone has their own personal style. You can be a geek, a square, a hypebeast, a trendhopper, a punk, a tastemaker, a man on the road to destruction – but be yourself. I will never short you if you continuously be yourself. Peep game – ever hear “Everyone is born original; don’t be a carbon copy”? Yeah, that. If the word “swag” disappeared from the modern lexicon, I swear on the stars that I won’t even blink these green eyes. Some people thumb thru lookbooks from designers in an attempt to find their “new look”, but the clothing chameleon thing is a subject for another time.

If you can inject your PERSONALITY (gasp…I know, it’s hard to fathom doing something no one else is doing) into your own personal style, you’ll be looked at quicker than the rest of the drones that tryta hit each fashion wave heavy and hard. But yeah – dead the skinny jeans shit, please. Just because Kanye and Weezy wore their daughter or niece’s  jeggings on national TV for the world to see does not make it acceptable for you to tryta slither you way into a pair yourself. Fashion is constantly evolving and, to be honest, most of the shit is gonna end up a fad – smoke in the breeze – being whisked away as soon as you see it.

Originality is key, but there’s nothing new under the sun. Kind of an ill concept in itself, but if you can make it your own, that shit will never go outta style.

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