February 7, 2007

Not Cool Bro, Not Cool

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On Superbowl Sunday, I ate brunch next to a table of “bros.” My companion and I were completely entranced and utterly fascinated by the living, breathing, face-stuffing cultural clichés we had serendipitously been allowed to witness. It was the most silent meal I have ever eaten, beating out even the straw-wielding fiascos following my freshman year wisdom teeth removal where the only things separating me from starvation was an entire menu of liquefied goo. As I numbly placed bits of omelet into my gaping mouth (opened in horror, not in order to facilitate food consumption), I couldn’t help but hang on to their every word.
An XY counterpart to today’s oversized-sunglasses-and-satchel-mongering, “be adequate” sisterhood, “bros” are so named because that is how they will most likely address you (“Sup, bro?”). With their popped collar polo shirts, well-worn baseball caps and penchant for exaggerated retellings of alcohol-induced shenanigans, the “bros” at my brunch were as authentic as they came. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw that between gulps of syrup-laden French toast came some semblance of communication:
“That one chick last night was totally into you, bro!”
“And when she introduced her friend … damn!”
“Haha oh yeah, she was all, ‘This is my roommate. We’re not lesbians but we like to make out.’”
“And they totally did bro!”
“Bro, it was awesome.”
Thinking back, my face must have been contorted into the best Sandra-Oh-as-Christina-Yang expression ever: extreme exasperation. I mean, what was going on? Were these guys for real? Had they seriously witnessed voluntary girl-on-girl action that was not for the purpose of producing a provocative Facebook profile picture? But I guess my grandmotherly logic will always be simply too outdated to accommodate the changing times. I still reminisce about the days when Bridge to Terabithia was a sentimental tale of friendship and loss, rather than some action adventure romp starring Violet Beauregarde.
Not being cutting edge or forward thinking, I was ill-equipped to handle the pansexual gluttony of the “bros” or their love affair with morning stubble. And maybe that’s the way I like it. Maybe I like PCs and want to puncture the heart of every superior-than-thou Mac fanboy with the acute corner of my external webcam to the sweet, sweet lullaby of a dual-clicking mouse. Maybe I still do a double take when I hear the opening of “Irreplaceable” slowly morph into “Imprescindible” while pathetically streaming KIIS FM through my battered laptop. Maybe I can’t accept that even baby clothes are sporting charming slogans like “Born to be a heartbreaker.” And maybe I absolutely loved Smoking Aces even though it starred Jeremy Piven as Magician Ari. And that’s another thing about “bros,” they love Entourage almost as much as they love North Face fleeces.
I couldn’t wait for the next hidden gem of knowledge that the “bros” were dropping left and right concerning social conduct. But apparently, the topic of discussion had changed from recapping the previous night to fond musings of a recent Vegas vacation where one of the “bros” had inadvertently wandered into a suite party inundated with topless women, only to be ushered out by security. But it seemed even “bros” were subject, at times, to harsh judgment from their peers: “Aww bro! You should have just picked a girl and said, ‘I’m with her.’ They were probably too drunk to know better.” Who could argue with such impeccable logic?