The term has become so ubiquitous that it’s hard to define exactly what being a douchebag entails anymore. So many different types and subdivisions of the category have emerged, that what was once a great insult to throw at somebody acting particularly inane has now become just another joke that could literally apply to anyone for any reason.
On top of that, it feels like over the last couple years or so, douchebaggery as a whole has calmed from a rolling boil to a delicate simmer. Point-in-case: I can’t remember the last time I saw a dude wearing an Affliction t-shirt at the bar. As we become further and further removed from our collegiate years, the barriers we once erected from a foundation of our parents’ socio-economic statuses, our cliques, and our campus bubbles, are slowly fading away. Like it or not, the older you get, the harder it is to stand out from the general working population. Most of us are just squirrels looking for a nut.
Enough with the sociological musings. Let’s get down to the real core issue. Douchebags are becoming a tragically endangered species, and finding them in their natural habitat is an increasingly difficult task. No longer can we simply look for the rhinestone-encrusted True Religion jeans or the Ed Hardy trucker hat. These days, it takes a keener eye to spot the rare gems that inevitably make you sigh with contempt, but can also make a night out that much more fun. So here’s a toast to the douchebags, with my five favorites in no particular order.
THE FULL BATEMAN
Giveaways: tailored suit, platinum AmEx, smug demeanor
Cherry On Top: slick-back haircut
Role Model: Scott Disick
You know this guy from his overbearingly loud and fake laugh. You can hear his big guffaws and chuckles from a mile away. No matter what he’s saying, it sounds like he’s telling you the story of when he closed the world’s biggest deal, TWICE IN ONE DAY, MAN! He is undoubtedly wearing his nicest suit at the bar on Friday night, even though you know he had time to change because his hair is perfectly coifed and he doesn’t reek of flop-sweat. To match his well-kempt but off-the-clock appearance, you can also be sure he’s rocking a Hermés or Ferragamo tie, loosened just-so. Douchey as this guy’s cocky smile and Gucci bit loafers may be, you want to stay close to him. At any given moment, he could pull out one of his flashy credit cards and throw down for 10 bottles of Belvy. Ride his coattails for as long as you can.
THE ROCK GOD
Giveaways: pointy boots, forearm tattoos, leather vest
Cherry On Top: turquoise jewelry
Role Model: Johnny Depp
This is the guy who can’t decide exactly which musical genre represents him the best, so this wannabe lead singer mixes and matches to his heart’s content. His look is a combination of Marcus Mumford, Mick Jagger, and Rob Zombie, and while to normal humans this looks like an absurd hodgepodge of affectations, Mr. Thirty Bracelets over here is confident that women can’t resist the look. If he leaves his black sunglasses on inside the bar and has any type of bandana tied around his wrist, he can easily jump from regular douche to king of the douches. Even if this dude starts talking about how music will never be as good as it was in ’69 or ’72 or when-the-fuck-ever, keep him in your sights and don’t write him off completely, because if it is actually Julian Casablancas, you might be able to pick off a straggling groupie or two.
THE COUNTRY CLUBBER
Giveaways: Smathers & Branson needlepoint belt, embroidered chinos, perfect teeth
Cherry On Top: Masters tour visor
Role Model: Phil Mickelson
Perhaps he just played 36 holes, but you won’t see a speck of dirt anywhere on his absurdly bright clothing. It’s more likely that he was just hanging out in the locker room since he can’t get golf privileges on his junior membership. You can spot this guy in a second, because he’ll look like a goddamn Easter egg, and even though the sun set six hours ago, his Maui Jims are still hanging around his neck. This look is usually reserved for theme parties or playing a round of bar golf, but none of his friends are dressed quite so gauchely, so you can tell he’s dead serious. Rocking one or two preppy standout items is great, but for the love of god, this dude has got to stop wearing all 14 of them at once. I mean, he might as well bring a loudspeaker and announce to the bar that he’s a douche if he’s going to dress like that. It’s best not to try and kick him out of the bar though, because if a group of 20-year-old sorostitutes shows up, they might flock to him like he’s a fucking Beatle.
THE OUT OF PLACE 37-YEAR-OLD
Giveaways: un-tucked spread collar dress shirt, spiked hair, sunburn
Cherry On Top: goatee
Role Model: Jim Rome
He’s already obvious because he’s conspicuously older than almost everybody at the bar, but man does he stand out even more thanks to his ridiculous hairstyle. Not only is he thinning pretty badly, but he’s doing that 2001 thing where guys would gel their hair forward but then make the front all spiky. He looks absolutely terrible, and the contrast-stitched, boot-cut jeans are not helping at all. And yet, an even bigger question remains. How does somebody even get that tan? Has he spent the last 11 weekends in a row cruising the lake for babes? It’s impossible to tell, but he could actually have a ton of cash. His name is probably Cody and his redneck ass probably made a small fortune when he started a construction business that took off. Instead of standing there in shock though, go offer to buy that 7th round of Patrón shots, because even though he might fall through the glass table he’s swaying next to, it’s equally as likely that he invites you to roll on his 40-foot Mastercraft along with the Saturday night A-Team from Perfect 10.
Giveaways: banana costume, life jacket, inflatable props
Cherry On Top: speedo
Role Model: Daniel Tosh
Remember the guy that would wear the ironic white guy basketball jerseys to fraternity parties? You know the one that would take any excuse to show up in an Indiana Pacers Rik Smits jersey and a beer snorkel? He has never grown up, and his current goal in life is to make a scene every single night he goes out. You can never really tell whether he’s going to be the greatest or the worst wingman ever, and it can vary wildly from night to night. Like, yeah, he’s definitely attracting a lot of female attention by running around and swinging a dildo at unsuspecting ladies, but you’re positive that sooner or later he’s going to get knocked out by one of their boyfriends. He’s likely one of your friends, and he’ll piss you off all night by stealing olives off the bar and trying to stuff them in your beer. Inevitably, it will be you hauling his ass to the cab at one in the morning while he’s in nothing but a banana hammock. He’s definitely a liability, and his schtick was only funny six years ago at house parties, but you can’t just ditch him. There’s always a chance that one of his pranks ends up landing you the perfect introduction to your future wife, and you’ll be thanking him for it when he gives a toast at your wedding.