images-1 Preen, a verb…to devote effort to making oneself look attractive and then admire one’s appearance : adolescents preening in their bedroom mirrors.
To preen, congratulate or pride oneself : he’s busy preening himself on acquiring such a dandy haircut.

This word has been coming up a lot in my life lately since I seem to be surrounded by preeners…people who tend to boast, brag, showoff or swagger…gloat, crow, exaggerate and dramatically overstate how remarkably talented and gifted they are.

Someone gazing into a mirror a bit too long, like a bird who preens its feathers after a lengthy toilette…it tidies, grooms, smooths and arranges…primps, pomps, poses, driving their peers to distraction not to mention the nearest bar.

I don’t have the preen gene, but it’s amazing how many people do making me think, it’s becoming epidemic. I’m besieged by them insisting I look and see how fabulous they are.

Bores in our midst who, despite their overblown self-worth are…pale, stale, tedious and flat…tiring, edgeless, vapid and bland…prosaic, dreary, dull and dry as a bone…and my personal favorite…mind-numbing like a drug one is forced into taking.

The funny part, many in this group with such high regard for themselves have little going on, yet sell their wares successfully featuring…vanity, haughtiness, arrogance and pride…snobbery, cockiness, conceit and an ego the size of fucking Kansas.

If you’re a tad impressionable, you actually start believing them…their hoax, prank, trick and ruse…spoof, scam, fraud and jest…in other words…it’s all smoke and mirrors baby.

With the exception of loving all the synonymous spin-offs, I can’t stand preeners. I want to stop them in mid preen and say, do you have any idea how obnoxious you are not to mention irritating, repugnant, sickening, and gross…offensive, overbearing, objectionable and..have you ever stopped to hear yourself? You’re about as entertaining as Muzak piped in an elevator.

Sadly, this ilk gets further than the rest of us humblers who spend our time more on our art than its promotion.

I guess what I’m trying to say other than words are doubly rich and worth looking up is…

it’s a true art to be an asshole.




About Susannah Bianchi

I'm just a girl who likes to write slightly on slant. I've had a career in fashion, dabbled in film and to be honest, I don't like talking about myself. Now my posts are another matter so I will let them speak for themselves. My eBooks, A New York Diary, Model Behavior: Friends For Life and Notes From A Working Cat can be found on Thanks.
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10 Responses to Preen

  1. You just described my X husband in a nutshell, hence the X. Now, as he lives in his parents basement after wife #3 left him, he STILL brags about his delusional greatness.
    Coincidentally, I barely remember his real name because I’ve been calling him Ass since 1986!
    Nothing worse than a preener!


    • I didn’t know you were married before. I love… you couldn’t remember his real name since 1986. Write that down…great for that memoir you’re going to write. Very Nora Ephron…my highest compliment 🙂


  2. micklively says:

    Some people preen through self-consciousness. It’s a body language trait of inner turmoil and insecurity. Others are attention seeking but can’t cope: as the woman in the low cut dress, who wishes she hadn’t been quite so daring and tries to tug it five milimetres higher every two minutes. My point is that not all preening is driven by arrogance and self-aggrandisement. And even when it is so driven, it is likely to be a mask for some character flaw. Like the bully who’s a coward. Vanity is just another ugliness.
    Roget will be proud of you.


  3. katecrimmins says:

    I agree with mick about preeners. I dated one guy who would go out of his way to admire himself in a mirror (3 dates max!). However, I loved your play with words. When I am angry I like to reel off a ton of uncomplimentary synonyms! So fun!


    • I’m always fascinated by them since I couldn’t preen with a gun to my head. It took three months for me to announce my eBook, and then I really to reimburse anyone who bought it. Now the consummate preener would have gotten you to buy two…lol…hope you’re feeling better.


      • katecrimmins says:

        The meds are making me ill when I take them just as I knew they would but in the end, all will be well. You can’t market yourself but most women can’t. It just feels wrong. I both admire and hate woman who can do that.


      • I agree, but either you have that in you, or you don’t. I keep hoping for a slow leak just to sell a book or two.

        Sorry you’re not feeling well. Have some toast…coat you stomach that is under siege. Hate meds…hate, hate, hate them.


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