A few years ago, while playing Magic at a comic book shop, I heard one of the other players make a comment, something to the effect that he had locked a game against another player’s burn deck thanks to a Circle of Protection from Red, or as he put it, “The C.O.P. smackdown.”

That was the first time I’d ever heard the word “smackdown,” and I must admit that I kind of liked the term at the time. But it drifted into disuse and obscurity until a few months ago, when a friend of mine started using it. Reminded that I kind of liked it, I was going to have that as the ‘Secret Word of the Day’ until I began hearing other people using it.

Like, a lot of other people.

That was Strike One.

After all, if everyone’s using it, then it can’t be that secret, can it? 

Strike Two came while channel surfing and I saw a “professional” wrestling program called, you got it, “Smackdown”. At that point, I lost all faith in the word, and did some serious thinking about it, prompting Strike Three.

My other favorite term of that ilk was “beatdown” and having mused on the differences between these, I have now decided that “beatdown” is superior to “smackdown” for two reasons. 

First, “smackdown” just sounds too effeminate. (say with gay lisp and lilting hand): “ooooh, I'll smack you!” 

More importantly, if you give someone a “smackdown”, then they just get up with a little red welt on them and wail on your ass. But with a “beatdown”, they ain't getting up.

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