Frat Pappy

I was eating the Eddie’s Special at Shono’s for lunch yesterday with my friends Joe and Ben when our conversation ran into a roadblock.

We have the appellation “Frat Daddy” for the member of a fraternity who epitomizes the sleazy values of his brotherhood, but we have no fitting name or title for the bro who finally finished his degree after seven years of debauching himself and accepted an entry-level position with a modest salary and no responsibility to be performed in a gray cubicle at a medium-sized office park.

The three months that this ex-Daddy spent putting a positive spin on his mediocre grades and status as his fraternity’s Social Director so that his resume would exceed 100 words in length gave him some perspective: Would he ever again enjoy the popularity, the notoriety, the glory, that were once his after he nailed that 4 minute, 37 second keg stand in late November of 2008? Those were the days. Why shouldn’t he continue on as a mentor and consultant with his beloved frat? The siren song of the dank bars and 12-hour tailgate parties was calling to him. He could not quit now. He owed it to himself, his parents, and his country to drink himself into a stupor on weeknights and rack up a few more counts of public indecency.

What should we call the Frat Daddy who technically graduated but never left? The de facto king of Natty and corn hole whose every ambition, whose very reason to exist, is caught in the time warp of College?

Yesterday, Joe suggested “Frat Papa,” but I think “Frat Pappy” is even better. Pappy is, of course, a synonym for grandfather, and if a Frat Papa is still skipping classes and leeching money from his parents, then a Frat Pappy carries the venerable distinctions of a diploma, pile of credit card debt, and aging Chevy Tahoe. A Frat Pappy has the social network needed to get his fleshy paws on the White Lightning.

Now that we’ve decided on the title, let’s catalog some of the bearer’s attributes, which include but are not limited to the following ::

· wraparound polarized sunglasses or Ray-Bans with Croakies balanced on the back of his neck and worn both indoors and outdoors
· a closet full of Polo clothing in a palette of pastels
· large, fuel-inefficient vehicle with a Browning decal on the back window; may have 4-wheel Drive gummed up through lack of use
· a can or dip or pouch of chew within arm’s reach
· lip or gum cancer in the early, undetectable stages
· alcoholism
· a prodigious gut, or “spare tire”
· three to six total pairs of boat shoes, loafers, Wallabees, and flip-flops
· seer sucker garments in at least three colors
· a personal appearance that elicits the following or similar remarks from concerned friends or past acquaintances: “Wow, he’s really let himself go.” Or “That’s what you call hard livin.’”
· mysterious hair loss
· purplish or swollen skin underneath his eyes
· an encyclopedic knowledge of his alma mater’s football and/or basketball team(s), more impressive considering that he was unconscious during the games themselves
· affinity for red meat
· fondness for profanity
· corpulence
· an astounding tolerance for alcohol
· a way with women that most often causes women to walk away from him
· habit of calling these same women derogatory names while they are walking away
· strong love or hatred—nothing in between—for the bench press
· unlimited supply of friends with lake houses
· various and sundry parts of North American game animals strewn about his room and vehicle
· the makings of a turkey gobble
· Koozie collection
· multi-daily use of cologne
· claims to have bought a beer for Vince Vaughn, Owen Wilson, or Will Ferrell
· boring job
· spiritual complacency
· existential torpor

We hope this catalog will help you identify and classify the Frat Daddy, ubiquitous at your local dive.

Please take a moment to append additional attributes in the Comments section below. Thank you.

Comments Closed


  1. TheFiz
    Posted July 9, 2009 at 3:22 pm | Permalink

    “a way with women that most often causes women to walk away from him” – Best Description

  2. Posted July 9, 2009 at 4:12 pm | Permalink

    A promising future in church league softball

  3. John
    Posted July 9, 2009 at 10:14 pm | Permalink

    Strangely, does this person also have an affinity to go without shaving and/or grow his hair out excessively long “just because he can”?

    The Frat Pappy might also be found to carry keys with a “ginormous” key chain/neck strap with his favorite SEC team hanging out of his front pocket, even though he never attended said school.

    J IV

  4. Austin L. Church
    Posted July 12, 2009 at 12:27 pm | Permalink

    A keen observation.

  5. Austin L. Church
    Posted July 12, 2009 at 12:27 pm | Permalink


  6. doubledubbyu
    Posted July 18, 2009 at 12:26 am | Permalink

    EDIT: “claims to HAVE bought a beer for …”

    -One of your students

    I enjoyed this post. It was very true and humorous.

2 Trackbacks

  1. […] Veni, Vidi, Vici. I came, I saw, I conquered [that spineless salesman who thought he could pull the wool over my eyes and reel me in with the sticker price. Please. Save your sales pitches and marketing jargon for the frat pappies.] […]

  2. […] years, but by the time I was an upperclassman myself, he had reappeared on the scene, one of those Frat Pappys who hang around campus on the periphery of student life. You’re not quite sure if they’re […]