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Saturday, July 08, 2006 Bookmark Now! | Email to a friend  

What does the term "metrosexual" mean?

Tossed around like a green salad, metrosexual has become the phrase of the moment, replacing the overused Snoop-inspired "izzles" and the Arnold-inspired "governator" phenomenon. To get to the heart of what it means to be a metrosexual, I went straight to the slang-o-rific Urban Dictionary for some edification.

There I found over 70 user-provided definitions. While some were completely worthless and even vulgar, the collection gave us a sense for the meaning of the word. Culling what we learned, we assume a metrosexual is a straight guy fastidious in appearance, in touch with his feminine side, and living in an urban area.

We learned that writer Mark Simpson introduced the word into our everyday vocabulary. In a Salon.com article on David Beckham from 2002 titled "Meet the Metrosexual ," Simpson provides the true meaning of his coinage:

"The typical metrosexual is a young man with money to spend, living in or within easy reach of a metropolis -- because that's where all the best shops, clubs, gyms and hairdressers are. ... he has clearly taken himself as his own love object and pleasure as his sexual preference."

Boiled down to its essence, the term refers to a single man who loves to indulge and pamper himself -- going against the stereotype of men as boorish slobs with questionable grooming habits.

At Mark Simpson's personal site, we clicked a WordSpy link . It traced the word's origin to an article by Simpson from 1994. WordSpy's handy definition varies only slightly from Simpson's original:

"An urban male with a strong aesthetic sense who spends a great deal of time and money on his appearance and lifestyle."

If you'd like to gauge your own metrosexuality, I found short quizzes from ESPN, Good Morning America, and Liquid Generation. So fellas, don't be afraid to zhuzh up your sleeves and put a little product in your hair, 'cause there's absolutely nothing wrong with metrosexuality.

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