The “humblebrag” (and why we invented it)

Here’s a great Wall Street Journal article about the “humblebrag,” a phenomenon observed by comedian Harris Wittels and immortalized (kinda) via Twitter. The humblebrag is the artful—yet tactless—combination of self- degradation and self- inflation.

Here is an example of the type of thing Wittels retweets:

Well isn’t that nice…

Here’s the thing: we think the humblebrag might have originated in the ‘Cac. Ok, not think KNOW. Because who walks into a party like they are walking onto a yacht? We do. Who owns an apricot scarf? We do. And we hang it next to our nautical themed pashmina afghan, when it’s not sent out for cleaning. Sucks to be so dirty, huh?

We're so vain. Photo Credit Elodie Reed, Amherst

It all starts before orientation, with that kid on the accepted students page who says “Just turned down Stanford to come to Middlebury, my parents (both alums) have never been prouder. Go Panthers!”

Guaranteed, this is the same kid who wrote in their graduation speech “Although I am graduating with a 4.0, I often wonder if high school was worth all the time spent in the classroom and slaving over homework.”

Most of us look at this kid and think OMG please just skip straight to recieving your med school diploma so that you can buy yourself some friends!

But really, we’re all guilty. Any of these sound familiar?

” I can’t believe I just ate that much, it’s a miracle I haven’t gained the freshmen fifteen!”

“Leave it to me to find the only hot blind chick at Trinity, why else would she have hooked up with someone who looks like me?!”

“I guess Professor X liked the lap dance I gave him during office hours, why else would I get such a good grade on such a crappy paper?”

“This hangover sucks, I definitely shouldn’t have used my monthly trust alottment to buy us all those beers!”

“I don’t know how I would get laid if I wasn’t in a band, because honestly I’m kind of a jerk!”

“Ugh, Daddy won’t pay for my apartment for the summer and I’m too lazy to get a job. Nantucket it is!”

There you have it. The humblebrag. This is such a clever post, we clearly have too much time on our hands…

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