This is a game Ruth and I made up today when we were sitting around drinking coffee and trying to wrap our minds around the idea of emerging into a New Year/putting on real pants. I woke up with the Katy Perry song about smelling like a minibar stuck in my head and so I’d been thinking about KP, specifically about how she and Zoeey Deschanel, in addition to being human beings, also seem like variations on the same brand concept aimed at slightly different demographics. This is related to but distinct from Molly Lambert’s black swan/white swan game, which evaluates twinned entities and determines which is the evil/better half. To be a trash swan (Katy is Zoeey’s), you have to be the more accessible, mass-market version of a person, band, concept, food, et cetera, but you do not have to be evil necessarily. You shouldn’t be related to the class swan except via this relationship: a brand’s diffusion line is not its couture brand’s trash swan, but probably something else is.
The Eagles are the trash swan of the Byrds. Liz Phair has staged several attempts to become her own trash swan but can’t get around herself, thank goodness. My inability to think of more good ones right now might be a sign that this isn’t a great game, or it might mean that I’m still brain-damaged from last night.