August 15, 2006 at 12:00 PM EDT

Overheard at PopWatch HQ this afternoon:

writer1: what should we write to commemorate today’s
release of Back to Basics? how about something like: ”Xtina, congrats on escaping skank-dom!”
writer2: who says she isn’t a skank anymore? don’t make her come to the 29th floor and prove it!
writer1: got a better angle?
writer2: i haven’t heard the new xtina, alas. so it’s quite possible she’s not a skank. but I still think there’s a skank within. or i hope there is!
writer1: that sounds like a good title for a post-feminist self-help book: the skank within”
writer2: LOL. and she had that song “the voice within”
writer1: i like that side of her too, but what i really like about her, as opposed to all the other pop tarts she came of age with, is that she can actually, you know, SING
writer2: yeah, that’s a pretty novel hook for a singer nowadays
writer2: but she’s also the xtina who not too long ago sang the words “What to do when the music starts to drop/that’s when we take it to the parking lot/And I bet you somebody’s gonna call the cops”
writer2: that’s skank!
writer1: the woman contains multitudes
writer2: ha!
writer1: i smell a doctoral dissertation: ”Genre in a Bottle: Dialectic and Discourse in the Works of Christina Aguilera”
writer2: sign me up
writer1: extra credit for defending your dissertation wearing a red pleather bustier
writer2: or a pair of chaps with your alter ego’s name spelled across the backside of your underpants
writer1: and double extra credit if you’re a guy

addCredit(“Christina Aguilera: Karwai Tang/Alpha/Globe Photos”)

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