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How to Explain the Nicki Minaj and Taylor Swift Twitter Feud to an Adult

By Dustin Rowles | Celebrity | July 22, 2015 |

By Dustin Rowles | Celebrity | July 22, 2015 |

Greetings Old Person:

Are you someone who believes Clueless is a seminal movie of your childhood? Did you come of age during the Clinton administration? Do you know who Richard Marx is? If so, congratulations! You’re an adult: Older than a millennial but too young to admit you belong to Generation X, because this and the fact that Adam Duritz can be found on the cover of AARP Magazine are just too much for your brain to process.

Were you cruising around on Facebook this morning, checking out the gossip in your Mom group, or telling everyone you were catching up on the New York Times while secretly watching Buzzfeed’s Taste Tests. In between your grumbling about how Facebook vacation photos are unrealistic because they never capture the many, many, many moments the parents were yelling at their kids, you may have noticed that a feud between Taylor Swift and Nicki Minaj had begun to overwhelm your Facebook feed. You probably kept skipping past it, however, because you aren’t really sure who these people exactly are and why you should care.

Well, let’s start there: Should You Care About the Minaj/Swift Feud?

No. Probably not.

OK, but it sounds gossipy. I want to know anyway, but can you explain it all to me in simple, easy to understand sentences with references to things that I know?


First off, you probably know who Taylor Swift is. She’s unavoidable. She’s like the Debbie Gibson or Britney Spears of today, only she’s, like, fairly talented. She’s that pretty white girl who looks really innocent but sings all those sly songs calling out her ex-boyfriends and has, like, 20 number one hits, but they all sound exactly like that one earworm you know, “Shake It Off,” which uses the same rhythmic displacement you know and love from “Chariots of Fire” and “Let’s Get Physical.”

Meanwhile, Nicki Minaj is that woman that the New York Times said is the most influential female rapper of all time. She’s a musical thunderstorm, a combination of the showmanship of Madonna, the rapping skills of Left Eye from TLC (R.I.P.) and the shotgun vibe of that song you really liked in that Seth Rogen movie. She had a really big hit last year called “Anaconda,” which is kind of a hardcore remix of Six Mix-A-Lot’s “Baby Got Back.” She shakes her ass a lot in the video. It’s pretty hot.

So this is what happened. Yesterday, the MTV VMAs were announced. I know you haven’t really watched the MTV VMAs since Madonna and Britney made out, but they’re still a big deal to musicians. Anyway, Nicki Minaj was nominated for a few awards, but she was pissed off that “Anaconda” wasn’t nominated for Video of the Year, and she thinks it has to do with the fact that she’s a black woman. And I know that, like, MTV was really progressive for your time, even though they, like, totally banned that XTC video where they sang about children refusing to believe in God, but it’s like ESPN now: A corporate machine ran by conservative businessmen.

So, Minaj goes off on this Twitter rant.

I know, you’re probably confused, because you’re like, “How do music videos break records and impact culture” if MTV doesn’t show music videos anymore?

Yeah, I don’t know. I can’t help you there.

Anyway, Taylor Swift saw Minaj’s rant and, because Swift assumes the world revolves around her, she took offense, thinking that Minaj was calling her out.

But Minaj was all, like, what the f*ck are you on about, lady? Not everything is about you.

And that was it. And I know, you’re like, “What? This is what’s tearing the Internet apart? Some possibly passive aggressive dig at Swift on Twitter that maybe totally wasn’t? This is a ‘feud’?” Because that sucks. Because back in the day, Axl Rose and Kurt Cobain nearly beat the shit out of each other, and Tommy Lee and Kid Rock actually did exchange blows. Those were feuds! This is nothing!

What can I say? Millennials celebrities are more sensitive because of all the stickers they got growing up.

But yeah, that was basically it. And now everyone is taking sides, including Azelia Banks, who is black, and should not be confused with Iggy Azalea, who is white but appropriates black culture.

This thing goes to the top. The feud has even brought in someone you actually know, Aaron Paul, from that show all your friends made you watch.

Pancakes sound great!

Dustin is the founder and co-owner of Pajiba. You may email him here, follow him on Twitter, or listen to his weekly TV podcast, Podjiba.