In a previous post I mentioned the death of swag. More than an overused term, swag has come to represent a cool demeanor, a stylish way of dress and a undeniably smooth approach to life. Think Dean Martin, Frank Sinatra or more recently James Bond in Casino Royale. So practiced yet so natural, they make the impossible look effortless. Swagger as we know it today actually has it roots in the 14th Century.
The Father of Sprezzatura
Coined sprezzatura by author Baldassare Castiglione, sprezzatura was characterized as "an easy facility in accomplishing difficult actions which hides the conscious effort that went into them."
Or simply put, a nonchalance in doing something as to make it appear effortless or without thought. A performance of sorts, and some have even go as far as say labeling it deception. Whatever your opinion its been long held that the consummate gentleman is a jack AND master of all trades.
Making the incredible appear innate undoubtedly takes skill and practice. Whatever you choose to excel in, be it athletics or dress, it must be accomplished with style and grace. No man is born possessing sprezzatura and that is the beauty of it. It is a learned art, perfected over time. The studied carelessness, or well-practiced naturalness should be a goal of every gentleman.
Float like a butterfly, sting like a bee, Ali embodied sprezzatura.....his rehearsed lines appeared to come out of nowhere.