Lorde Calls Drake 'Irrelevant,' & Now We're Questioning Our Understanding of the Word
Oh, Lorde. Lorde-y, Lorde-y, Lorde-y, Lorde. What's the latest in "Lorde gabs about other artists" news? The 17-year-old singer told Interview magazine that she thinks Drake, Nicki Minaj, and Lana Del Rey are "irrelevant." Uh, what now? If by "irrelevant" you mean "always on the radio/dominating the iTunes charts/selling out concerts," then yes. Those three artists are totally "irrelevant." But I'm not so sure that's what "irrelevant" means. "Hey, Miriam-Webster," I called out. "Yes, Kristie?" "Could you hit me with the definition of 'irrelevant'?" "Here you go, dude: 'Not important or relating to what is being discussed right now.'" "Thanks, MW!"
Hmm. So. Either "not important" or "not relating." Okay. I think Lorde meant to call those other musicians "not relatable," not "not important/not current." Because it would be bananas to say any of the aforementioned artists aren't current. I will concede that many of us cannot relate to the opulent lives of celebrities. I'll totally give her that. But I don't think not being able to relate to a song is a bad thing. I can't relate to 98 percent of what I listen to, and I don't care. If I listened to music that I could relate to, the lyrics would be: "Went to Trader Joe's today/They were out of the pumpkin toaster pastries/The whole situation bummed me out." But to each their own! There is room for relatable and not relatable music. Hit me with your explanation, Lorde:
Around the middle of last year I started listening to a lot of rap, like Nicki Minaj and Drake, as well as pop singers like Lana Del Rey. They all sing about such opulence, stuff that just didn't relate to me—or anyone that I knew. I began thinking, "How are we listening to this? It's completely irrelevant."
Oh LORDE. In the context of pop culture, "irrelevant" usually means "passé," not "not relatable" (ugh, so many double negatives). Admittedly, I'm not a linguist. Just a gal who has watched a lot of Behind the Music in her day. And the word "irrelevant" conjures up imagery of washed up, former child stars. Not Nicki Minaj.
I shouldn't roll my eyes at Lorde. I use words incorrectly every damn day. And while the dictionary tells me otherwise, she could be using the word correctly, but in a very sophisticated way. In a Lorde-esque way. Let me take stab at using "irrelevant" like Lorde would. Here are a few things that might be "irrelevant," per Lorde's definition:
A Paper Towel Roll
Lorde and a paper towel roll have nothing common.Totally irrelevant.
A Loaf of Bread
Lorde will never understand what it's like to be baked dough. Bread is irrelevant
The show Firefly
Lorde is not a cowboy in space. Therefore, Lorde thinks Firefly is irrelevant.
A Speed Bump
Lorde doesn't know what it's like to be a speed bump. She'll never be able to identify with a mound of poured asphalt. Who needs 'em. So. Ir. El. Ev. Ant.
A Bottle of Nail Polish
A bottle of nail polish is nothing more than a glass container full of lacquer. What part of that is supposed to speak to Lorde's life? IRRELEVANT.
How is Lorde supposed to connect with a woodland creature that stockpiles food in a tree for the winter? Lorde will never stockpile food in a tree. Squirrels are irrelevant.
I think I get it now. EVERYTHING IS IRRELEVANT.
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