Say the word “dude” and visions of surfers and white frat boys pop into my head. Being called it makes me wince, except when my friend
So I looked it up:
dude – 1883, “fastidious man,” New York City slang of unknown origin. The vogue word of 1883, originally used in ref. to the devotees of the “aesthetic” craze, later applied to city slickers, especially Easterners vacationing in the West (dude ranch first recorded 1921). Surfer slang application to any male is first recorded c.1970. Female form dudine (1883) has precedence over dudess (1885).
It also referred to “Dandies” and as a verb means to get dressed up. So I guess I shouldn’t cringe and cower from the word after all… assuming of course those that use it know its proper meaning.