Mar 26 2005

SlangWatch ’05: “Snarky” Is The New “Edgy”

[Note: Typepad refuses to upload today’s Morsel Institute photo. What you are missing out on is documentation of a “chicken-burger,” which idea turns out to be only about half as ill-conceived as you think]

[New Note: Here is the "chicken-burger" after all] 

It is rare that a single word, as opposed to a full-blown catch-phrase or meme, should attain the status of crappy meaningless cliché, but have you noticed that lately no 21st century English sentence is complete without the word snarky?

Snarky is used often and incorrectly in a context of glowing admiration for the one so described. It is my contention that what is often meant by “She’s so snarky!” is actually “Her wit is delightfully ascerbic.” In this case, please, just say “Her wit is delightfully ascerbic.” Or, “She is Dorothy Parker.”

In the event that the subject is an object of disdain, consider that there are always better ways to describe a cagey wiseass with self-eminent delusions who lacks real substance, than to rely on mots that lack bon-ness. I suggest “She is a fucktard.” Or, “She is David Spade’s penis-nose.”

You know, if somebody had euthanized David Spade back when he was begging for it on that crappy sitcom, we wouldn’t even be having this discussion.

So profoundly unpleasant is this snarky–particularly when spake with an American accent, which sends the word up through the sinuses and contorts the mouth into an Upper Class Twit of the Year grimace–that it soils anything it touches with a viscous mist of its own putrid essence. This means that it is the exclusive, holy province of teenagers. Anyone else who dares speak it is inescapably an even bigger asshole than the fucktarded David Spade penis-nose under discussion.

Joining the slogans on T-shirts in the $2 bin at Walgreen’s, all McDonald’s ad copy, and ribbon-shaped car magnets, snarky is now the minion of Mediocrity, and would be, in a prettier world, execrated by anyone over whom Truth and Beauty still hold even the slightest sway.


Skip to comment form

  1. Bottom of the snarky bin

    So, this is what a chicken burger looks like… if only I could smell it, touch it, look it in the eyes- or sing a song about it. Some cheerful luding is perhaps an order against this fast-food adoption of the snarkies and anywhoos and white guys saying, “my bad”, because they just watched 8 Mile.
    Damn, Twisty, you’re hot! That “do” is rockin’.

  2. betsy


    my personal ad headline at the moment says “fat, smart, and snarky”. i’m not sure if “fat, smart, and full of ascerbic wit” will fit in the space given. perhaps i’ll check, however.

  3. kathan

    i think it’s acerbic.

  4. Twisty

    It’s a fair cop, Kathan. Another point for Truth and Beauty.

Comments have been disabled.