December 08, 2016
Hipsters have a way of bringing things back from the brink, like beards, vinyl records and now, as word on the playground suggests, the moniker "papa."
That’s right. Today’s dads may be feeling far too cool to be called dad, so they’re going with papa instead.
This discovery, based on a recent anecdotal piece by Daily Beast reporter Lizzie Crocker, who took a fly-on-the-wall approach at a Brooklyn coffee shop and found papa bears aplenty, suggests dad is for their dads.
Crocker writes that the papas she spotted in Brooklyn were mostly white, upper-middle class and in their 30s and 40s —many of them bearded and tattooed. There were still some dads there, though. And probably mamas, too, but that's another story.
According to Crocker's piece, "papa" peaked in popularity around 1870 and was replaced by "dad" in 1970.
While the reason for the new rise in "papa" isn't completely clear, as one dad – er, papa – told Crocker, "dad" is antiquated, whereas "papa" is an “open-minded, liberal term ‘like a dad with a twist.’” So there's that.