dad bod: body shaming our fathers?

last year dad bod was one of the most talked about new expressions in the english language. the phrase refers to men who are somewhat (a little) fit but not completely obsessed with exercise and the appearance of their bodies.  despite the “dad”, it is often applied to men who don’t have children. it is supposedly a compliment.

dad bod showing off with his kids
u don’t have to have kids to have a dad bod.

but if english speakers continue to use the idiom, how will dad bod negatively impact sensitive fathers?  the latest video on the richyrocks youtube channel considers these feelings.

one concern for self-conscious fathers is body shaming i.e. making someone feel bad about how their body looks. at :20, listen for the question

is body shaming acceptable when it’s against our fathers?

shaming at walmart
shaming a thief who stole from walmart. does the thief have a dad bod?

at :24 the observation is

he must be a dad. he doesn’t have time to work out.

work out means exercise.  must in this case indicates a strong probability, not an obligation.

soft and lumpy are used to characterize dad bods at :35. lumps are masses with undefined shapes.  lumpy is used to describe objects with a lot of lumps. when lumpy is used to describe a body, it is not a compliment. it sounds unmuscular and unattractive.

this clip from adventure time s01e02,  trouble in lumpy space, features the lumpy princess (the purple, lumpy cloud) and has various examples of lump and lumpy.

feelings of inferiority are expressed at 1:00 in the dad bod vid

holding my body up against younger, tighter, sexier bodies. is that fair?

hold up against is similar to compare. tight in this context means in shape, muscularfair means just or decent.

fun efl practice :) richyrocks on youtube

this line at 1:15 is a warning about the social repercussions of body shaming dads…

stigmatizing the dad bod. that’s not gonna keep baby daddies in the house.

stigmatize means mark negatively, scorn.  baby daddy means dad. it is often used specifically to describe a father who is not in a permanent relationship with the mother of his child.

poster for the series "baby daddy"
baby daddy is a popular phrase and a series on american television.

frustration and anger provoke the comment at 1:25

dad bod fights back, huh?

it is accompanied by the finger, a well-known gesture/insult directed in this video at the people who use the phrase dad bod mockingly. fight back means retaliate, respond with force. huh? functions as a general, informal tag question.  tag questions are complicated because they require attention to tense, auxiliary verb and person. huh?, like right?, replaces all tag possibilities.

famous photo of feyenoord giving the finger
famous photo of a young football fan giving the finger

the final line of the vid is a hypothetical (second conditional–>if + simple past + would,should or might)

even if i had the time that i dedicate to dad activities free, i probably wouldn’t spend those extra hours in the gym anyway.

the dad activities are reality. second conditional is used to speculate about a hypothetical alternative.

glorious dad bod
can u resist the dad bod?

what are your feelings about the dad bod? is it really a compliment to less burly (muscular, strong) men?  is it an insult to dads?  share your perspectives under leave a reply




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