SWUG, dayger

Ben Zimmer bgzimmer at GMAIL.COM
Fri May 30 20:55:04 UTC 2014

Here's a working link to the 2011 YDN article:


The Urban Dictionary entry cited below is from Oct. 26, 2010:


On Fri, May 30, 2014 at 4:34 PM, Laurence Horn wrote:
> On May 30, 2014, at 2:40 PM, Ben Zimmer wrote:
>> At Yale, "SWUG" = 'senior washed-up girl' and "dayger" = 'daytime rager':
>> http://nymag.com/thecut/2013/04/meet-the-swugs-of-yale-women-washed-up-at-21.html
>> (Article is from Apr. 2013 but is showing up in social media today for some
>> reason.)
>> Larry, have these shown up on the student slang lists you've collected?
>> --bgz
> Neither of these showed up on my last incarnation of the New English Word Journal (spring 2013).
> But the previous time around, in 2011, there was this entry from the NEWJ submitted by Alon
> Harish, antedating by 2+ years Raisa Bruner's Yale Daily News article mentioned in Silverman's
> NYMag piece, viz. http://yaledailynews.com/weekend/2013/03/29/swugnation/:
> ========================
> 4. swug — [swʌg] n. 1. An acronym for “Senior Washed-Up Girl.” Any female college senior, who due
> to the mating dynamics of college students, are found less sexually desirable than their younger
> counterparts. adj. 1. Of or relating to swugs.
> Etymology: _Swug_ is not always used in a negative light. For instance, in the Urban Dictionary example,
> a girl embraces the swug lifestyle: “I texted two sophomore guys and got rejected by both, but I don't
> even care because I have a bottle of wine and my $150 vibrator—I LOVE SWUG LIFE.” In general,
> however, the term is meant as an insult when used by those who are not themselves swugs, though
> almost always in jest. For example, a recent email I received announcing a party contains the line “Bring
> your swag, not your swug.” (_Swag_ is another new word, though a few years older than _swug_, meaning
> roughly “enhanced appearance.”)
> Date and context when encountered: February 24, 2011
> In a Yale Daily News article by Cristina Constantini [sic; her name is actually *Costantini*, as below]
> (http://www.yaledailynews.com/news/2011/feb/24/costantini-academic-paper-titles-bullshitdialecti/?
> print), the author lists 30 academic paper titles, half of which were taken from actual papers
> submitted in Yale classes. One title contained swug in its original form: “A Woman’s Right to Booze:
> Deconstructing the Feminist Narrative of Marginalized S.W.U.G. Communities”
> I have since heard swug on numerous occasions both in and outside of the Yale Daily News, most
> recently at a meeting Mar. 28.
> ============================
> Note that Mr. Harish's link doesn't work as given, but perhaps the article can be tracked down by other
> means, although a search under "Costantini" turned up nothing by her, just two articles in which she
> was mentioned by name (she was a graduating senior in 2011).  Googling "SWUG" at the YDN cite
> provides no hits earlier than this column--
> http://yaledailynews.com/blog/2012/09/24/drimal-profile-of-a-swug/
> --by Chloe Drimal. (Drimal was cited as a source of inspiration on SWUGgery by Bruner in her
> above-linked March '13 YDN piece later that same academic year.)
> And from last fall there's also FWUG, the refreshingly sex-inclusive Freshman Washed-Up Guy/Girl:
> http://yaledailynews.com/blog/2013/09/06/milstein-profile-of-a-fwug/.  Evidently, you can never be washed
> up too early!
> Given that Mr. Harish provided his cite in the spring of 2011, I'm inclined to think he did pick it up from
> a column in some YDN issue from that spring, even if I can't locate it online.  (I probably have a copy
> somewhere in my office.)
> Isn't it reassuring to know the august traditions of your own Bright College Days at Yale are still as
> hallowed as ever, Ben?
> LH
> P.S. Nothing on "dayger".

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

More information about the Ads-l mailing list