in defence of 'daddy'

No one is above kinky gifting in the capitalist lottery that is life right now. Find me a person who wouldn’t wear a pig tail butt plug to live rent free in London and I’ll show you an idiot.

by Bertie Brandes
08 August 2018, 9:17am

When people said the internet was going to significantly alter our daily lives, they were talking about education, community-building and porn. In hindsight what the internet did was change language more than Shakespeare reading Ulysses backwards into Siri.

Language has changed a lot. The wide wild web has torn down the wall between niche references enjoyed by less than 30 people, and vocabulary used by the entire world. Now everyone uses dumb slang all the time! Sure, incessant texting and typing may have killed tonally inflected sarcasm, but out from the grave of spoken word (way too soft-boy anyway) flies the phoenix of absurdist irony.

It happens something like this: meme words that initially had a pretty clear meaning (thicc = curvy n fine, for example) almost immediately come to exist in a state of pure irony. Most people using the word thicc in August of 2018 would use it assuming that it’s going to be received as sarcastic. Or like, not sarcastic, but burdened by the weight of abstracted meaning. By now, “She thicc” is more likely to caption a big Peperami, a fluffy cat or a heavily loaded truck than a genuine thot. There is a big difference between the thicc of yore (a curvy compliment, please don’t ever use it about me) and the thicc of now (Peperami, cat, etc). After a few weeks, meme words which are now soggy with irony and twisted by intentional misuse, subconsciously become daily slang. The internet loves an in-joke and there’s space for a lot of them.

So let’s get to it. Daddy. Daddy is having a moment. He’s wearing his best short-sleeved shirt. He’s up and at em! He’s thinking about whether eating outside is an option for dinner. Daddy! We all love Daddy and calling hot guys Daddy and mean guys Daddy and sometimes borderline violent guys Daddy! We love wondering if our 22-year-old sad boy crush could possibly be Daddy Bae! The answer is no. But why the sudden fuhrer? Sorry, furore.

In a traditional role-play sense, the concept of Daddy as a sexy dom is less radical than Mary Berry being pro-Brexit. It just makes sense. Daddy role-play has existed probably as long as p in the v (lol). It’s rampant, and you know why! It’s hot. But, and hence the intro to this piece, the meaning and usage of Daddy in 2018 is something altogether more woke and less fuck-y. :(.

Quick disclaimer: I was supposed to write this about the Tory MP who has apparently ruined the term Daddy for everyone by using it in some leaked sexts. However, while Andrew Griffiths and his frustratingly st*rred out swearwords that make my brain chatter (“butt plug? butt plug? It must be butt plug”) might be cringy, he is in fact using the term Daddy in the most conventional way possible.

The rest of us, and those of you buying the “daddy” embroidered caps at Urban Outfitters however, are not. The term is absolutely borne out of the sub/dom dynamic but, like skin during a heatwave in a country with no fucking air conditioning anywhere, it has accumulated new gloopy layers of meaning. When we repeatedly say Daddy on Twitter and in our podcasts and on our janky DIY memes (it’s a content creation revolution!) we aren’t referring to any actual S&M we get up to on our own time. We aren’t like, exposing our amazingly kinky sex lives, I think in reality we’re attempting to get leverage on a deeply, painfully generalised feeling that someone is fucking us.

So finally, the sad bit. While someone’s probably already suggested that calling powerful men Daddy ironically is a form of male-objectification that mocks the patriarchy, I just want to go on record to say I fundamentally do not believe that to be the case. We obviously all just want a real Daddy but don’t have the guts or nouse to find one, so constantly joke about it instead, like we’re above that. Sorry, no one is above kinky gifting in the capitalist lottery. Find me a person who wouldn’t wear a pig tail butt plug to live rent free in London and I’ll show you an idiot.

For this reason, I would like to pose Andrew Griffiths as the only real daddy in a sea of posers. Being a Tory in a country that’s literally gasping in a chokehold of conservative rule means that automatically he’s my daddy, he’s your daddy. Squeal, piggy.