I'm used to walking around unnoticed. In Orlando, I dash from class to class avoiding eye contact and generally moving through any building unscathed. At college tailgates and bars, I am used to being ignored by frat guys, except for when they step on me or accidentally pour beer in my general direction. I am OK with being unseen with the Orlando male population and figured that would be my experience world-wide. Then I spent the summer in New York.
Upon walking into my building I noticed a common theme. The men, typically somewhere in their twenties to early thirties were all dressed the same. They wore checked or pastel button-downs, khaki or navy pants, and a vest. They looked like they walked straight out of a J.Crew catalog. While walking around New York, I realized it wasn't just my building that got the memo, but almost every man in Midtown dressed the same way. Guess what, they were all in the same field too... finance.
A popular Instagram account @midtownuniform began posting memes about the finance men you will find in the city. Recently, the accessory of ear pods became an essential part of the uniform. In retrospect, I stayed in a part of the city where all of these men seem to congregate. It was hard not to laugh when I shared an elevator with these men all dressed the same. I had traded out frat-tanks for Patagonia vests.
These men were all, what they call "Chads." But what exactly is a "Chad?" Coined by men who call themselves "Incels" (short for involuntarily celibate), Chads are modelesque men who can get any women they want — hypothetically. They have a jawline that could cut glass and are generally high-powered, sexually active alpha males. In other words, they are your typical "bro" or the adult version of a frat boy — or a real-life Wolf of Wall Street if you will.
Apparently escaping unseen wasn't part of the equation either, thanks to many "Chads." Throughout my time in the city, I met several guys working in the banking world, all of whom had the exact same traits. They were incredibly hard-working, often in the office by 8 a.m. and staying until 11 p.m., had their next job lined up even though it was two years away. They were high-energy, a bit full of themselves, and making more money in a year than I will probably make in five years as a journalist.
One, in particular, seemed perfect on paper, but in reality, I wanted to punch him in the teeth.
A bit violent yes, but I never acted on such thoughts. He checked nearly every theoretical box, but he severely lacked any emotions and would go AWOL during the week. He had the emotional intelligence of a five-year-old and frankly didn't understand the word "no." But here's the thing — we still had a lot of fun. We went to great restaurants and comedy clubs and hung in Central Park.
But here's the thing, "Chads" never really had to work for anything. They all seem to generate from the same socio-economic class and congregate at the same school. They feel it is OK to disappear during the week and resurface over the weekend and I'm just not into that.
Sorry "Chad," but you are just not my type.
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