Where Were You When Shakira Ruined Gerard Piqué?
5:39 PM EST on January 15, 2023
I stumbled upon the scene of the crime on accident. I was wasting my time in the way a person who works in media tends to waste their time—scrolling, scrolling, scrolling through Twitter—when I glanced at the box on the right side listing what was trending and it told me Shakira. Hmmm ... I love Shakira. So I clicked and, unlike most of my choices to click on Twitter, this one I did not regret, though it did mean I had to witness a crime.
First, a bit of background, because we need motive. Recently, Shakira and her longtime partner, Gerard Piqué, broke up. Piqué spent 14 highly successful years with Barcelona. He also was a part of the 2010 World Cup-winning Spanish team. Shakira was and is, well, Shakira. (I refuse to believe anyone does not know Shakira.) She met Piqué on the set of her 2010 World Cup song "Waka Waka (This Time For Africa)." They became social media official in 2011, and welcomed their first child in 2012, followed by a second son in 2015. Since then, Shakira has continued to be Shakira, with more music, more world tours, and a recovery from a hemorrhage on one of her vocal cords. She also was one of the celebrities discovered using offshore companies to manage their wealth in the Pandora Papers, which led to her ongoing dispute with the Spanish government over her taxes. As for Piqué, he retired from professional soccer last year.
But today what matters the most is that, in June, the couple announced they were separating. What happened? I had honestly not paid much attention to the reports before I casually clicked on the following YouTube video this weekend while I sat on my couch, listened to the heavy rain fall in Los Angeles, and told myself that, any minute now, I would do all those chores. And then, without warning, like a unnamed character in the cold open of another episode of Law & Order, I stumbled upon this:
There are many, many burns in this song. Dare I say, nearly the entire song is burns, and these are meticulously crafted burns because they land, hard, in both English and Spanish, which is no small feat of language. In fact, the more I ponder it, the more I realize that burn is too casual a word. Every line in this song is the tip of another spear plunging into Piqué's heart and I say his heart because this is full-frontal attack, not one in the back, as Shakira sings the word "salpique" in Spanish with a pause between the "sal" and the "pique," then flicks her fingers toward the camera, just in case you had any doubts about what she meant. As Shakira tells it in her song, "You left me with your mom as a neighbor, the press at my door, and a debt with the Treasury." She proclaims, "Women no longer cry, women get paid." And she scolds Piqué, calling him a "rookie," noting, "You traded in a Ferrari for a Twingo," and for good measure throws in, "So much time at the gym, but maybe work out your brain a bit too." Shakira even slyly drops the name of the woman Piqué reportedly left her for. Every bridge is burned; no one is left unscathed. All that is left behind after the three-minute, 37-second jam is debris and a smoky post-apocalypse haze.
So I sat there, on my couch, and watched it again, and again, and again, and then told my husband that this might the greatest diss track of all time. After watching this, I cannot remember a single thing about Piqué. He has been obliterated from my mind and my personal history. It's a miracle I can even spell his name right now. Did he, like, play soccer or something? I guess. But now and forever he'll always be that dude in Shakira's epic diss track. RIP Piqué. It was nice remembering you.