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flex (3)

verb metaphor
to show off
 
One can “flex on someone” — which means to brag to show off to someone, or simply flex, where the person listening is implied. This term has a lighthearted connotation, and is typically used in humorous circumstances to call out someone who is bragging or being condescending.
Etymology : The idea of flexing a muscle is that one shows off their strength from their mass of physical muscle — this idea was extended from the physical sense of showing off something that could be flexed to abstract ideas or other non-flexible objects. Another scenario for flexing is when people come to gyms not just to work out, but to selfishly show off their workouts through physically flexing their muscles. This idea of extraneous actions to selfishly proclaim one’s sense of superiority was applied outside the domain of workouts and applied to abstract ideas like talent or personal networks through metaphor.
Source : “She’s flexing on us so hard.” conversation with Brown College sophomore, October 2018
Last modified: 10 December 2019


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