It used to be that anyone who’d lived a long time and was still breathing was instantly deemed “legendary.” They may have done three flop records, been kicked out of a B movie, guested on a public access show, and fronted a restaurant that gave people salmonella, but hey, they were still alive, so they were freaking legends! Well, the word itself got old, so it eventually had to be retired to Miami and totally replaced. And now, anyone who’s been around and lived to tell about it is automatically dubbed “iconic”. Lazy people just can’t say it or write it enough–it’s the most overused word since “Hello!” or maybe even “fabulous.”
A press release I recently got even described one of the members of a now-obscure ’70s rock group as “iconic.” Not the amazing lead singer, mind you, but one of the other guys–I guess because he’s still living! And he’s hardly alone in getting i-word status. Everyone from second-string chefs to siblings of socialites to wannabe gynecologists are suddenly fucking iconic! Honey, even I was called iconic in a recent daily paper article about nightlife–and though I was wildly flattered to bits, I knew exactly what it meant: that I had been around, had shown my hand, and was basically unhirable. So spare me, people. I’d much rather be ironic than iconic. Hello!