LSSU's annual list of "words that should be banished" for the new year, always goes "viral" (ironically, this word tops the list). We agree that "epic," "fail" "I'm just sayin," are so 2010 (yeah, using "so" as an adjective is as well). We've got our own l'il list. None of these are new, but that we noted each were the source of contention and comments like never before this past year on blog posts. In our Nightranger column, we tried to limit the use of these words as much as possible, but sometimes they were just called for. Ultimately it's all about context, and for us, that meant never using these disparagingly... well, most of the time. Much respect to Eastside goths and hipster trannies and twinks who kill it out there (on stage or in life). Happy 2011!
Yeah self-hating black-garbed ghouls are nothing new to pop culture, but we noted use of this word became an even bigger no-no than usual for some clubs. Most of LA's dark environs don't use the word on any of their promos, even though the vampy crowds who haunt the haps are what most would call gothic. This past year, one club even posted an angry facebook rant against a Weekly writer who referred to their party as "goth." It wasn't, but the ire the word inspired was undeniable. No one wants to be codified, we get it, but we think being associated with a word that firstly refers to a medieval art movement is kinda cool regardless of what Hot Topic hath wrought.
What to say about the H-word that hasn't been already? "Hipster" isn't beards or neon Raybans or skinny jeans or little hats. In fact, the beauty of the word - yes, beauty- is that it changes according to what's hip or hot at the moment. Two articles this year pondered it intriguingly: this one and this by none other arbitor -and often arbitrator- of hip, Vice's Gavin McInnes.
3. Trannies and Twinks
As a supporter of gay/bi and transgendered people and friend to many in LA's creative community, we've tried to use both T-words sparingly. This past year anyway, it seemed the term was used more by drag queens (short for "transvestite") than transgendered, so we followed suit, unless the trans performer themselves used it in a lighthearted and positive way, ie, "I'm a hot tranny," NOT "She's a tranny mess." We heard our gay BFs use "twink" a lot this year (referring to "pretty boys" and femme fellows) and it was always in complimentary fashion. Bottom line: probably use these only if you're gay or a fag hag (which by the way, is okay too... if you really are one).
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Somebody should really write a song about "the Eastside" controversy ("Eastside State of Mind?") But, they better not be from Silver Lake or Echo Park. And they better not be white, either. Blog police who patrol the net for what they say is mis-use of the designation (S'Lake and EP inspire the most ire) obviously have a lot of time on their hands, but for the most part, the fervency behind the arguments seems to be more about gentrification -and word #2 inhabitants- than actual regional borders, which don't exist. And until Villaraigosa himself (or whichever LA official with the authority to do so) designates legal boundaries for "the Eastside" it will remain subjective. Period.
The two most tweeted words of the year? Maybe not, but if you follow music folk like we do, you saw this way too much in 2010. It's meant to be the ultimate compliment for a band's live performance, but its use just got out of hand. We think it should be used sparingly, and for bands of a visceral nature. If they're spewing gallons of sweat during a guitar solo, hanging from the rafters while singing their biggest hit or giving a voracious, pitch-perfect rendition of a classic while the crowd shouts along, they might be killing it. But a strong set simply doesn't cut it, or kill it.
What words or terms did you hate on this year? We're thinking "hate on" for 2011? Maybe "WTF"?