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Dad Becomes Internet Famous to Convince His Teenager He is Cooler Than Shawn Mendes

When Brian Dean’s daughter became a Shawn Mendes fan, he decided to have some fun with it.

Screenshot: Brian Dean Instagram

Dean started an Instagram account called “Kooler Than Mendes” to prove to his daughter that he is cooler than Shawn Mendes by attempting to get as many followers as the singer. In just four weeks, Dean already has over 16,000 followers.

Mendes, who currently has 12 million Instagram followers, is an adorable Canadian musician a la Justin Bieber–only without the tattoos, or the verbal diarrhea, or the general douchebaggery.

It’s no wonder Dean’s daughter has taken a shine to Mendes. Since pop music began, every generation has had its own Tiger Beat heartthrob.

In my day we had NSYNC. I loved them despite Justin Timberlake’s bleached Ramen noodle hair, JC Chasez’s relentless attempts to dress himself like a penis, and the fact that Joey Fatone was the human doppelganger of ALF.

When I was a teenager, my dad used to sing NSYNC tunes when my friends were over as a way of joking around. Though I was embarrassed at the time, I now regard those moments with fondness because my dad has passed away. As an adult, I no longer care about the former teen heartthrobs, but I would give anything to hear my dad belt an off-tune rendition of “Bye Bye Bye” just one more time.

Brian Dean reminds me of my own father because of how he has engaged with his daughter’s Mendes fandom. He is funny, charming, and obviously loves that girl in a way Shawn Mendes never could. That’s why I have decided to follow the crap out of Dean on Instagram. You should follow him as well, because I guarantee, he IS cooler than Mendes.

Someday his daughter will think so, too.