Rad bod

kuleshov

Senior Member
Spain Spanish
What does rad mean in the expression rad bod? Does it mean radical?
I think if a man has a rad bod, he is fit, whereas if he has a dad bod, he is losing muscle tone, and getting a beer gut.
Cheers
 
  • Twisty

    Senior Member
    Polish
    I think it's the AE slang word meaning "very good". Other similar expressions include "groovy", "dope" etc.
     

    kentix

    Senior Member
    English - U.S.
    That's what it means. Rad isn't a common slang word these days but it's used in that case because it's a perfect match with dad.
     

    kentix

    Senior Member
    English - U.S.
    Other similar expressions include "groovy", "dope"
    Like all slang, time and place is critical. It comes and goes quickly and much of it is used only in specific subgroups.

    Groovy has been obsolete since about 1975.

    Dope is past, too, and never hit the main mainstream, in my opinion.
     

    kuleshov

    Senior Member
    Spain Spanish
    Thank you very much.
    Merriam Webster says it means cool, so, as you say, it seems it's just a question of rhyme.

    And what did it mean in the US in the 90s?
     

    Roxxxannne

    Senior Member
    American English (New England and NYC)
    It meant 'really and truly good'. I believe it was short for 'radical', with a changed meaning, as often happens with slang (cf. 'ill,' 'bad').
     

    Ponyprof

    Senior Member
    Canadian English
    Using outdated slang can be a form of mild humour in English writing but it needs to be obvious that the writer knows its outdated. Here, if the writer's intended audience is people in their 30s to 40s, they might recognize the slang from their teen years, and also that their generation has moved on from being rad teens to middle aged dads.

    I could imagine writing about someone who was 22 in 1968, that "he lived a groovy trippy hippy life on the beach for several years." The slang is totally outdated but it reflects the time period.
     

    Roxxxannne

    Senior Member
    American English (New England and NYC)
    I could imagine writing about someone who was 22 in 1968, that "he lived a groovy trippy hippy life on the beach for several years." The slang is totally outdated but it reflects the time period.
    In 1968, I believe actual hippies and their associates spelled the singular 'hippie.'
     

    dojibear

    Senior Member
    AE (US English)
    I think rad/radical was originally surfer slang (ocean, not internet).
    I agree. "Rad" is short for "radical". Both expressions are used.

    Website etymonline.com shows this origin for the slang term "radical":

    U.S. youth slang use is from 1983, from 1970s surfer slang meaning "at the limits of control."
     

    dojibear

    Senior Member
    AE (US English)
    I could imagine writing about someone who was 22 in 1968, that "he lived a groovy trippy hippy life on the beach for several years." The slang is totally outdated but it reflects the time period.
    The slang adjective "hip" was used in the 1950s, along with "hipster" and "hep" and "cool" and "daddi-o" and "beatnik" and "far out". In the 1950s, beatniks in the US wore black clothing and berets, smoked cigarettes, played bongo drums and wrote "beatnik" poetry. And were depressed. And never smiled. It was very fashionable. Sammy Davis Junior was the iconic "hipster".

    But yes, the "hippies" and a "hippie life" was different and started a decade later.
     

    Ponyprof

    Senior Member
    Canadian English
    The slang adjective "hip" was used in the 1950s, along with "hipster" and "hep" and "cool" and "daddi-o" and "beatnik" and "far out". In the 1950s, beatniks in the US wore black clothing and berets, smoked cigarettes, played bongo drums and wrote "beatnik" poetry. And were depressed. And never smiled. It was very fashionable. Sammy Davis Junior was the iconic "hipster".

    But yes, the "hippies" and a "hippie life" was different and started a decade later.

    Oh yes. I dont go far back enough but I've read my Kerouac :) and if my putative character was 22 in1958, I'd be say he flirted with a downbeat jazz-influenced hipster lifestyle on the edges of Greenwich Village. Or conversely was a tractor cap goatee wearing Williamsburg hipster working in a brew pub 50 years later.
     
    Top