Image by Ryan McGuire from Pixabay

The subset of men that fall under the "Bro" umbrella is by now a well-understood facet of modern culture. Some self-identify as a bro. Others have the title foisted upon them.

Let's look at some definitions.

The #2 rated definition on Urban Dictionary is hardly flattering:

"Obnoxious partying males who are often seen at college parties. When they aren't making an @ss of themselves they usually just stand around holding a red plastic cup waiting for something exciting to happen so they can scream something that demonstrates how much they enjoy partying."
"Nearly everyone in a fraternity is a bro but there are also many bros who are not in a fraternity. They often wear a rugby shirt and a baseball cap. It is not uncommon for them to have spiked hair with frosted tips."

The #3 rated definition, however, was glowing:

"Your bro is your homie(s) for life. Calling someone your bro declares automatically that you are down for life, that your bros come directly in front of thy hoes. Choose carefully who you declare as your bro, because some people could intercept this very wrongly and it could backfire."
"You could call strangers you interact with "man" and/or "dude" but "bro" is sacred."

It's the almost spiritual reverence for Bro culture that pushed Redditor joestarbloodline to ask:

"Men of Reddit, what's your favorite unwritten rule of the bro code?"

Many Bros on Reddit chose to highlight the intentional ways they interact and communicate with one another. At the end of the day, we're talking about friendship.

Cheat Sheet

"Up-nod for informal respect, down-nod for formal respect." -- Cheshire90

"head up - hi, sup etc. head down - u have my respect, thank u head left - look over there head right - we need to talk, come here" -- TypowyPiesel

Be a Pal

"You gotta hype your bro up if it genuinely makes him happy, such as; new job, new relationship, new positive lifestyle, new car, etc. Seeing your bro reach peak potential is always a great feeling."

-- Brickfrog501

Mental Health-Aware Bros

"When your bro is isolated and lonely, bros reach out and call them or text them every day to make sure they are okay."

"Bros bring bros food when bros are feeling down."

-- JustAnotherGuyn

The Clearest Sign

"Here's mine: you're supposed to sh** on and talk sh** to your closest bros right to their face. That's how you know the bromance is real."

-- sbaks0820

Others offered tongue in cheek rules about how one is supposed to handle the untimely death of a Bro in their life. Bottom line, spiff them up as much as possible.

An Impressive Final Story

"If your friend dies while bench pressing, add more weight to the bar before calling anyone." -- Zyffrin

"I mean you would have to be pretty sure that he is dead before. Imagine someone fainting and waking up with so much weight on them that they can't lift it." -- Additional_Meeting_2

Scrub, Scrub, Scrub

"If your friend dies you delete his browser history" -- HiNaughtyGirlImDad

"Something similar for me. A friend was gay, but deeply in the closet. (old guy in his 70s)"

"Before be passed, he begged me to keep it a secret. How do you say no to that?"

"After he was gone, I offered to help his family clean up his home, since I lived close by."

"Ending up spending a few days scouring the home, finding anything that might reveal his orientation, and got rid of it."

"I'm sure his family had suspicions. How do you hide such a thing? But I did what was asked of me." -- Someone_Who_Cared

Last, there was plenty of talk about bathroom etiquette. Unfortunatley, at least some amount of homophobia is usually embedded in Bro culture.

Careful Head Movements

"There are 3 authorized looking positions while at a urinal. Straight ahead, straight up in the air, or straight down. Never side to side."

-- Jnida23

Safe Space

"There are 5 urinals, don't be a di** and use the second one from the right or the left." -- Comfortable_Length56

"Us janitors know they don't need cleaning. Nobody dares use them /s" -- Jollysatyr201

Time and Place

"No bathroom conversations with any other man you dont already know." -- Cycleofmadness

"Unless you are all insanely drunk." -- Juan__two__three

"And even if you do know them, if it's something that can wait until after you leave, then wait until after you leave." -- svenson_26

If you ever do find yourself thrust into a Bro-style relationship, come back to this list to remember how to stay welcomed into the fray.

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