Friday, February 1, 2013

Thoughts on the Bro-nomenon

There’s nothing in the current zeitgeist that scrapes my nerve endings rawer than the “bro” culture. At best it’s cringe-worthy; more often: Goodbye, Lunch!

I’m not sure exactly why these words and concepts fill me with such intense scorn. No doubt I am projecting. I’ll leave that question to the psychoanalysts.

Some specific words, phrases, and examples have been swirling in my mind lately; I have to get them out of my system! Join me as I do some immersion therapy into some of the current language and features of this unfortunate phenomenon:

The Bro Code
Could this have started it all? Thanks a lot, Neil Patrick Harris. (Still love you NPH!)

Think “Isn’t it Bromantic” or “Caught in a Mad Bromance”

Man Cave
Room or area where a man can be a man. I guess.

Actually, this is a term used against the bro culture. Implies a condescending attitude when explaining something to someone, usually from a man to a woman.

Read this and (literally) weep. Notorious mansplainers. Being a technical writer, I’ve had to work with these guys before. (Ironically, I’ve experienced it less often in the Pacific Northwest than when I lived in the Midwest.)

Man Up
For some reason, a favorite of many ultra-conservative women politicians. Great song in Book of Mormon, though.

Bros before ‘hos
Yuck. Just yuck.

Highlighted in the documentary Mansome. (AV Club gave Mansome an F, once again saving humanity from utter ruin.)

Old school: Dane Cook. New school: Daniel Tosh. New school is ironically misogynistic (but light on the irony).

There can be no better example than Mark Driscoll; he is the platonic form of the brovangelical. For an antidote, follow the pitch-perfect satire of Acts29Pastor on twitter. (Also see: Mansplaining)

Men’s Magazines
Long version: Helping men live by the Four Rules of Manhood: (1) Get buff, (2) Be aggressive in business, (3) Get hot women and satisfy them in bed, (4) Buy expensive clothes and accessories. Short version: Helping men be dicks.

Spike TV
Explosions and shit.

Axe products
Buy our products to be like the guys you see in Men’s Magazines. (See: Men’s Magazines)

Men’s Workout/Diet Books
Seriously, have you ever read one of these books? Any useful information must be filtered out from the constant reminders of the Four Rules of Manhood (See: Men’s Magazines)

Men’s Cookbooks
Possibly even more hyper-heterosexual than Men’s Workout books. Cooking doesn't make you gay! It makes you more of a MAN!

Sports Journalists
Watch ESPN Sportscenter or any Sat/Sun morning football roundtable. An interesting subculture. Mostly beta males who either (a) desperately want approval from the alphas (athletes) or (b) are insanely jealous of the alphas and work hard to discredit and embarrass them.

I feel like there is a lot more out there that I missing. What other examples of “bro” language or culture have you experienced? I would love to see them! Put your examples in the comments below or on the Facebook page!

1 comment:

Author Dylan Morrison said...

Great wee article Shoopscope. The 'bro' thing does my head in as well. In the Northern Irish evangelical everyone, male that is, was called 'bro' usually because the person in question couldn't remember the guys name.


I'm having flashbacks!