It's yet to go mainstream a la AFOL (Adult Fans of LEGO), but the Brony culture (grown men who love "My Little Pony") is a growing phenomenon. Still, there may be some who don't understand the term, folks who may be wondering what makes a man a Brony.
A fair question, and one that CBS-Sacramento's Tony Lopez did his best to answer in a recent news report. The world of "My Little Pony" (TV show, toys, stuffed animals, etc.) traditionally appeals to young girls. But Bronies aren't afraid of pursuing their hobby, no matter what the haters say.
Carlos Alfaro, president of the Sacramento State Brony Club, spoke to Lopez about his fandom. He says he's heard all the negative reactions, like, "Boo. You guys are lame. My Little Pony? Seriously? Oh my God.”
Being a Brony requires standing up to stereotypes.
One member of the fan club told Lopez that he likes the "My Little Pony" storyline because, "It’s fun and it’s sweet, and it’s a strong moral thing. I think more people could benefit from it if they gave it more of a chance."
It appears that more and more people are giving it a chance. A 2013 expo in Baltimore called (what else?) BronyCon drew thousands of passionate Bronies who walked the walk and talked the talk.
A similar convention in California also drew a large crowd last year.
But despite their growing numbers, Bronies still suffer the occasional indignity. Like when Walmart allegedly confused the '80s version of "My Little Pony" with the new, cool version on a T-shirt.
Follow Mike Krumboltz on Twitter (@mikekrumboltz).