Cities have this intersection of cultures. Social media has it too.
In Baltimore, there are technologists and activists and journalists and residents. Then there’s Edgar Allan Bro, a Twitter account that traffics less in quotations from “The Raven” and more in nonchalance, satire and, at times, insult, by appropriating the stereotypes of over-masculine ‘bro culture.’ (For an overview, see NPR’s work on defining a bro. For an encyclopedia, type the word “BroBible” into Google.)
According to the Twitter bio of this century’s Edgar Allan — who goes by the handle @FedHillBro — “lax,” “roofdecks,” “sick lax pinnies,” Natty Boh beer, and calling women the offspring of hens qualifies a person for Baltimore bro-dom.
For those who aren’t following the joke, the idea is that the bars and nightlife of Baltimore’s Federal Hill neighborhood attract a certain kind of privileged drunken chauvinistic fraternity set, whether that’s fair or not. This Twitter account is meant to be the embodiment of that.
Technical.ly Baltimore has taken a look at a couple online caricatures before, including Mayor Stephanie “Failings-Blake” and That Guy’s On Heroin, a blog that posts photos of people around Baltimore city who are, presumably, on heroin.
The thread here is where meaningful satire ends and where frivolity, or even indecency, begins.
So we reached out to the person or persons behind Edgar Allan Bro, who agreed to speak only in character, to get some thoughts on the reason for a parody account, and whether it’s simply regurgitating stereotypes about a Baltimore neighborhood.
Editor’s Note: This is unedited from an email.
TB: When did Edgar Allan Bro join Twitter?
EAB: Sup brah. I joined Twitter like 2 years ago. Everyone who’s been to Fed always talks about the bar scene and how there’s a ton of 20-somethings, so why not have some fun with it on Twitter?
TB: What do you do for a day job?
EAB: Just doing the 9-to-5 deal: keeping my head low, hustling when necessary, and waiting for the weekend.
TB: What makes Federal Hill the best neighborhood, apparently, for bros?
EAB: It’s the best neighborhood period, broseph. People like to say, “Oh, Canton/Fells/whateverhood is better,” but Fed crushes. Everything you want: sick bars, chicks, close to the Inner Harbor, a variety of restaurants, kickball, Ravens pre- and post-game, walking distance to Camden Yards, other chill bros, festivals, little crime, next to I-95, pizza, CVS, chicks, gyms, liquor stores, other stores, parks, places to get more beers.
Only thing we’re missing really is a sweet German beer garden and a Taco Bell. I want those brats and cheap tacos and I wanted them yesterday.
TB: Are you worried about perpetuating stereotypes about Fed Hill?
EAB: If you think having fun is a negative stereotype, you’re in the wrong place, brah. Not serious but serious side note, bro: Fed is way more than just “megabars” that some people complain about.
Something for everyone if you like fun. I pretty much listed everything above, and local business kills it and prints money here if they do things right. There’s a reason people want to live here and more businesses are opening — or want to open — in Fed. I’m not a doctor, but I know people coming to Fed to eat, drink and live is a good thing for the city.
TB: Why should people vote Edgar Allan Bro as Best Humor Account in the Mobbies?
EAB: Easy. Because nobody on Twitter is as good as me, Bro Flacco. Just read through my tweets. Solid gold everywhere, bro.-30-