The Dad Bod and Me

With all the “fads” that have happened over the last 5 years its hard to keep track of them all. From Man Buns to Flash Mobs, and the Harlem Shake to Tebowing, there have been a lot of fads, and like all fads, they peaked, and then faded out (thank god). However, the Dad Bod was arguably one of the most interesting fads we have ever experienced. Anyone that knows me at all knows that I jumped all over the Dad Bod.

But we’re getting ahead of ourselves. First we need to talk about what the Dad Bod is. The Dad Bod really hit its stride when a sorority girl from Clemson wrote an article for a class (literally exactly what I am doing now) about how this new phase of male physical appearance. The “official” definition of a Dad Bod is “a nice balance between a beer gut and working out. The dad bod says, I go to the gym occasionally, but I also drink heavily on the weekends and enjoy eating eight slices of pizza at a time. It’s not an overweight guy, but it isn’t one with washboard abs, either”.

When I first saw the article I was thrilled. First of all, I saw that the trend was taking the nation by storm, so naturally that made me feel comfortable. Secondly, girls liked it? Apparently girls no longer wanted wash board abs and ripped biceps, they wanted someone fun, someone who didn’t take them self too seriously, and someone who would go to Taco Tuesday or $4 pitcher Wednesday  (Missoula, we could really use a bar that does this).

During the peak of the Dad Bod phase many celebrities also joined in, including:


Seth Rogen

Chris Pratt

Jason Segal

Robert downy Jr.


Obviously with all these A list celebrities embracing the Dad Bod, I figured I needed to as well. When I came to college I was relatively fit. I played competitive soccer 4 nights a week, ran track and cross country. I generally respected my body and my physical appearance. My first year of college I did a good job of working out and trying to eat right. I gained a little weight, which was to be expected. The next two years however, that’s a different story. My Liam Hemsworth esque physique quickly turned to an Owen Wilson esque physique. I traded in my 24 pound dumbbell curls at the gym for 24 ounce IPA curls downtown (that a type of beer for those of you that don’t know). Just like the definition says, I started working out less and enjoying adult beverages and pizza more. By the second semester of my Junior year the trend was in full swing and when people thought of the dad bod, they thought of me……… the following are all from my personal Facebook page

dad bod is dead dad bod 1 dad bod workout my post

I was so into the Dad Bod that I even bought a shirt, and people posted pictures of me in that shirt on my birthday



But like every other fad, the Dad Bod inevitably died. However, I did try to ride it out as long as I could. I even wrote a speech for my Public Speaking class titled, An Ode to the Dad Bod. I would wear my Dad Bod shirt and embrace the Dad Bod mentality for an entire semester in the Fall. I did finally give up on the Dad Bod and decided to get my life back in order. I cut down on my beverage intake, watched my diet, and lost 25 pounds (shout out to Pneumonia). Unfortunately for now the Dad Bod seems to be dead, and that truly is a shame. I am fully prepared for its return, and hopefully this blog post can jump start that. I know that I will gladly lead the comeback tour of the Dad Bod.

Why I Will Miss Missoula

It’s graduation season and this year I am one of the graduates. I am excited to be done sitting in lectures hours and for all-nighters in the library to be things of the past. But that means it is time for us graduates to find jobs, and for many of us we know that we will have to move out of this town that has been our home for the last four years. As I reflect on my time in Missoula, I can think of endless things that I will miss and it will be so hard to say goodbye. I am going to share with you the seven things that I will miss most about my favorite college town.

ONE: Football gamesarticle-2278626-176FB139000005DC-294_634x399

There is no better way to spend a Saturday morning in the Fall than cheering on the University of Montana Grizzlies. Half of the state meets in Missoula wearing their maroon Griz gear to tailgate, enjoy some football, and celebrate Griz Morning!

TWO: The riverriver-float

The Clark Fork River runs right through town, which adds a lot of beauty and activity. Floating the river and surfing Brennan’s Wave are common activities for summertime in Missoula. There is also a path along the river that is populated throughout the year, no matter the weather conditions.

THREE: The fooda62f23dc724fc1e93f315cb55e068ef8

Big Dipper, Five On Black, Biga Pizza, Plonk… Just to name a few. These are popular Missoula restaurants that I will greatly miss. Biga Pizza is great for a night out with the girls. A glass of wine and fantastic gourmet pizza is never a bad idea. Five On Black is a locally owned, cheap, and fast option for lunch or dinner. Plonk is perfect for when you are wanting to get dressed up and treat yourself to a fancy drink with friends. Finally, Big Dipper, definitely a Missoula favorite. Big Dipper serves the best ice cream in town.

FOUR: The downtown scenedownload

Downtown Missoula has a lot to offer at all times of day. Great breakfast, lunch, dinner, and late night spots for every crowd. There are some fun shops and galleries to explore during the day and plenty of bars for late night entertainment.

FIVE: Hiking the Mmain-tower-m-trail

The hike to the M on Mount Sentinel is a must do for anyone who resides in, or visits , Missoula. From the top of the M you can look over the entire town. I will miss being able to sit up at the M and look over the University of Montana campus, and the town that has made my college experience incredible.

SIX: The eventsthe-annual-symphony-in

There are always events going on in Missoula to bring the community together. First Friday, Downtown Tonight, Out to Lunch, Top Hat shows, and Brewfest are some of my personal favorites. With a wide variety of events, there is sure to be an event for everyone to enjoy!

SEVEN: The peoplekeep-missoula-weird

Missoula is a very accepting and welcoming community. Everybody in Missoula is encouraged to be exactly who they are and do what they love. I love that the people in Missoula are so friendly and treat each other with such kindness. While the scenery, beauty, and culture of Missoula are spectacular, it is the people I have met here that made this my home, and it is the people I will miss the most.

Big Dipper vs. Sweet Peaks

big dipper logosweet-peaks- logo

Two local ice cream favorites, both Big Dipper and Sweet Peaks seem to have their own avid followers. Last month, the Missoulian released it’s annual “Missoula’s choice” for best food places in town. Big Dipper ranked #1 and Sweet Peaks ranked #2 for ice cream in town. But how close is it? Does Big Dipper truly have superior ice cream? Can Sweet Peaks come out on top next year?

The veteran of the two ice cream shops, Big Dipper started in 1995 and grew from the Missoula location to two additional locations in Billings and Helena as well as a travelling “Cone Boy” ice cream truck in Missoula. It has won many awards and been featured on national television for their spectacular ice cream.

Sweet Peaks, founded in 2010, started in Whitefish Montana and made its way to other locations in Western Montana including Missoula. Known for their artisan flavors sourced from local ingredients, Sweet Peaks is growing in popularity and becoming one of Missoula’s most popular ice cream shops.

While both shops sell spectacular ice cream, to examine their strengths and weaknesses you can examine a few characteristics of ice cream shops. First, flavors can be compared and contrasted. Big Dipper offers year-round flavors like; Vanilla, Chocolate, Huckleberry, Yellow Cake, Espresso while Sweet Peaks offers more specialty flavors; Madagascar Vanilla, Huckleberry, Chocolate Love, Salty Caramel. In addition to the classic flavors offered year round, both Big Dipper and Sweet Peaks offer creative seasonal flavors. For example, at Big Dipper you can find pumpkin during the fall and Sweet Peaks offers a winter holiday flavor that tastes like a Christmas tree.

Cupcake and Yellow Cake are flavors offered at Sweet Peaks and Big Dipper, respectively, and both offer different tastes. Cupcake at Sweet Peaks is very sugary and has rainbow sprinkles. Yellow Cake tastes just like cake batter, but doesn’t have any sprinkles.

In terms of waffle cones, while both Big Dipper and Sweet Peaks have hand-made cones, Sweet Peaks has the superior cones. Cinnamon and sugar are mixed in the waffle cone batter at Sweet Peaks, which when combined with any of their flavors makes for a damn good cone.

And really, in the battle over which local ice cream shop has the superior ice cream, you can’t go wrong with either choice. Either way, you’ll end up eating ice cream and that to me is a pretty sweet day.


8 More Foods That You Must Try in Missoula, MT

It’s that time again. Time to dive into 8 more mouthwatering foods that you MUST try in Missoula, Montana. As if the first 10 weren’t delicious and satisfying enough, here’s a list of 8 more dishes to add to your tasty Missoula food repertoire. Trust me, you’ll enjoy them.

Missoula (Mo) Club: Mo Burger

Mo Burger

The Mo Club is popular all hours of the day. Whether you’re lookin’ to get some lunch with your family, grab a beer and shoot some pool with your buddies, or get your midnight drunkin’ snack fix, the Mo Club can hook you up. They have a rather small menu, featuring burgers and shakes, but it’s truly all you need. A Mo Burger begins with ground beef that gets mixed with a generous dose of chopped onions before heading to the flattop grill, enhancing the juiciness and flavor. Now this is where the real magic happens. The grill remains greasy and always crowded with juicy burgers, so you know that your sizzling meat patty will always come out tender and delicious. Choose your cheese, add some bacon, and maybe even make it a double. It comes served on a grilled bun along with pickles and sliced onion. Honestly one of the best, if not the best, burger you will ever have.

Iron Horse Bar & Grill: Tender 501

Iron Horse

The Iron Horse is a cool joint located on Higgins in the heart of downtown Missoula. The dynamic building offers four outdoor seating areas, a huge bar downstairs with plenty of TVs, as well as an upscale bar upstairs known as the 501 Lounge. The menu hosts a variety of dishes, with massive salads, pastas, sandwiches, and much more. The one thing on the menu that you have to try would be the Tender 501. This sandwich starts with perfectly seared tenderloin slices cooked to your personal taste bud preferences. Atop the savory tenderloin sits sweet caramelized onions, and a slathering of slightly spicy sriracha aioli for the perfect balance of flavor. Finish it all off with a cheesy Romano hoagie, and you have one heck of a delicious sandwich. Stop in for Martini Monday or two-for-one well drinks on Thursday for the perfectly satisfying evening at the IHo.

The Depot: Shrimp Won Tons

The Depot Wine Room

This Western steakhouse is best known for its quality steaks, prime rib, seafood and wine selection, as well as its Larry Pirnie artwork. Now, if you’re looking for some delicious upscale dining, this is definitely the place to go, but make sure you begin your meal with this special appetizer. Shrimp Won Tons. These perfectly fried pillows of heaven are filled with chunks of buttery shrimp, velvety cream cheese and oniony chives. They come pilled high and piping hot to your table, alongside a choice of hot mustard and sweet and sour sauces. Pair it with a nice glass of wine or a local brew and you have one perfect Western Montana meal.

Double Front Café: Chicken

Double Front Chicken

The building has been around since 1909 and the chicken has been served since 1935. If you want a little taste of history with your chicken, this is the spot to go. Their motto says “The Best Takes a Little Longer,” meaning that their fresh, never frozen chicken takes about 30 minutes to make. But it is absolutely worth the wait. Choose from light meat or dark meat, or both if you want. This hand-battered and fried chicken is good no matter what part of the bird you choose. Get a side of golden fries and some sweet corn nuggets, and don’t forget the side of pickles! It’s the perfect greasy, salty, cheat-day meal.

Ciao Mambo: Pasta Ravenna

Pasta Ravenna

This beautiful Italian restaurant has figured out how to create the perfect romantic atmosphere. Soothing music, low lighting, and delicious wine will get you in the mood…for some pasta. The dish you have to try is the Pasta Ravenna. Gorgeous, vibrant color comes from the sun dried tomatoes, intertwined in a luscious, creamy roasted garlic cream sauce. Juicy grilled chicken, artichoke hearts, and mushrooms all combine with perfectly cooked bowtie pasta noodles. While you wait for your heaping plate of luxurious carbs, feel free to pick up a crayon or two and create a masterpiece on the white, paper tablecloth. Stop in for the perfect romantic evening for two, or bring the family for a nice night out to decorate the table with the kids. Either way, you will be flawlessly satisfied.

Sweet Peaks: Ice Cream

Sweet Peaks Ice Cream

Sweet Peaks first opened its doors in Whitefish, Montana, but has now expanded to other nearby locations, including a relatively new location in Missoula. Made from cream and milk from local Hutterite dairy farms, as well as other fresh, local Montana ingredients, this ice cream is something special. From pistachio dark chocolate to Lafaza Madagascar Vanilla, there is definitely something for everyone. With a rotating list of flavor offerings, it’s difficult to say which ones to try, so I would suggest sampling them all! Cupcake is my favorite flavor, with rainbow sprinkles of course. The waffle cones are also made fresh daily, and are slightly cakey with a hint of cinnamon. So stop in to get a split waffle cone so that you can try two flavors at a time, and while you’re at it, there’s even doggy ice cream to serve to your best puppy pal. You won’t be disappointed!

Bagels on Broadway: Bagels and Cream Cheese 

Bagels on Broadway

If you are a bagel enthusiast like myself, then you will thoroughly enjoy Bagels on Broadway. This bagel shop opened over 20 years ago on Broadway in Missoula. They offer over 20 different flavors of bagels with a variety of cream cheeses to shmear all over, not to mention a delicious assortment of bagel sandwiches. The chewy bagels are made fresh, in-house, daily and include anything from Cinnamon Raisin to Rosemary Focaccia. Choose from an array of cream cheese spreads such as Bacon Scallion or Honey Walnut. I can’t tell you which combination to try, because there are so many incredible creations to be made! I will tell you, however, that my favorite is the Cornmeal Bagel with Lox cream cheese. Get it toasted and smeared high with yummy cream cheese and you have the perfect jump-start to any morning.

Missoula Brewing Company: Strawberry Wolf Point Wheat

Highlander Brewery

The Missoula Brewing Co. is located off of North Reserve Street in Missoula. They boast a 2,000 square foot taproom with a retractable garage-style door for those warm spring and summer months. Glass windows separates the brewery from the taproom on one side while the Grant Creek flows on the other, all nestled in Cottonwood trees. Sound like a dream? You haven’t even heard about the beer yet. Missoula Brewing Co. offers four flagship Highlander beers that are offered year-round in their taproom: a Northwest IPA, Red Ale, Montana Lager, and an American Bock. One taproom offering that you have to try, however, is called the Strawberry Wolf Point Wheat. A strong strawberry aroma will draw you in, followed by a subtle fruity taste and soft finish. Don’t be skeptical about trying this berry inspired brew, it is truly incredible. Did I mention they have incredible pizza too? I mean beer and pizza? It doesn’t really get better than that. So stop on in and grab a beer and a slice. It makes for the perfect end to a week of amazing Missoula eats.

If you missed the first list of “The 10 Foods That You Must Try in Missoula, MT” you can find it here!