snowdeal logo

archives archives

ex machina

swag v. schwag

i received an email from a reader from a reader regarding my use of the word 'schwag' to refer to the contents of the snowdeal store stating that , much to my surprise, it wasn't a word:

"There is no such word as "schwag".

The proper term is:

n 1: (informal) valuable goods 2: goods or money obtained illegally [syn: loot, booty, pillage, plunder, prize] v 1: droop, sink, or settle from or as if from pressure or loss of tautness [syn: sag, droop, flag] 2: walk as if unable to control one's movements [syn: stagger, reel, keel, lurch, careen] 3: sway heavily or unsteadily

As a longtime fan of the word swag, I hate to see it corrupted. I hope you will share my concern."

now, i'll admit to doing zero research before using the term 'schwag'. when i used the word, i was thinking of the colloquialism that i had heard during my youthful days of indescretion to indicate poor quality marijuana - as in, "dude, that's schwag weed." [ not that i had anything to do with the purchase or consumption of said schwag weed, of course ]. i thought i had heard people say the word 'schwag' in reference to poor quality tchotchkes , like those you may or may not find in the snowdeal store . i thought it was a simple case of reappropriating a euphamism and didn't think twice about it. and now, i find that it might not be a word at all. but after doing a little digging, i'm more confused than ever.

a simple googlefight show that swag beats schwag hands down [ and even more dubiously, i discover that the snowdeal store is in the top five results for 'schwag' ]. and has a reference for swag but not schwag . inquiring minds want to know - could i have wrong all these years?

but things aren't so simple. no less an authority as wired has used the word schwag and the urban dictionary has references to both 'swag' and 'schwag' where a few of the definitions of schwag sounds appropriate:

"any product or thing of poor quality masking itself as a viable product.

Aquanet is the shwag of the hair care world, and Spam is the schwag of the meat world. "

so which is it, 'swag' or 'schwag'?

bookmark: ::digg it ::furl ::reddit ::yahoo ::
11/30/2003 10:40:00 PM 1 comments


The way I think about it... the 'official' word is "swag" but some people pronounce it "schwag" because it sounds even more... um... swaggier? :)

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 12:23 PM  

Post a Comment

[ rhetoric ]

"it is hard to be brave," said piglet, sniffing slightly, "when you're only a Very Small Animal." rabbit, who had begun to write very busily, looked up and said: "it is because you are a very small animal that you will be Useful in the adventure before us."

the complete tales & poems of winnie the pooh

[ about ]

this site chronicles the continuing adventures of my son, odin, who was unexpectedly born on the fourth of july at 25 weeks gestation, weighing 1 pound 7 ounces.

he's quite a fighter and you can always send him a postcard to the most current address listed here if you're inspired by his adventures. see the postcard project/google maps mashup to see a map of the postcards.

if you're new, you can browse the archives to catch up. and don't forget to watch a few movies that i made while we were in the neonatal intensive care unit. or if you want the abridged version and you can find a copy, you can read about his adventures in the november 2005 issue of parents magazine.

[ search ]

[ outbound ]

daddytypes / blogging baby /

rebeldad / thingamababy / The Continuing Adventures of Super-Preemie / dooce /

[ schwag ]

look snazzy and support the site at the same time by buying some snowdeal schwag!

[ et cetera ]

valid xhtml 1.0?

This site designed by
Eric C. Snowdeal III .
© 2000-2005