Why I wish the Brothers Chaps would have spoken at my College Graduation

If I were in charge of lining up speakers for a College graduation, my first choice would be Mike and Matt Chapman aka "the Brothers Chaps."

I don't actually know that much more than what the Homestar Runner Wiki says about them. I wish I did. If they had a published biography, I would buy it.

Why? And who are they?

These are the creators of Homestar Runner, an online web comic. It is hilarious. It is clean. It is also something that Danny and I have watched for hours and hours and hours together, since before we were married. Most nights when we are procrastinating going to sleep, one of us will type "h" in the link bar in the browser (what is that thing called?). Homestar Runner is the first site that pops up. Always.


It was just starting to fade in popularity a little when I was in college. That is where I learned about it, when a TA for my Computer Programming 101 class let us watch a clip. I didn't think it was that funny at the time, to be honest. In order to appreciate the humor, you have to really watch many, many episodes.

Literally, Homestar Runner has become a giant inside joke that I share with Danny. Sometimes I will quote it without remembering it is from Homestar Runner, and not something that actaully happened to us.

Back to the Bros Chaps: here is why they are ingenious.

They started the homestarrunner.com website as a hobby, never thinking it would take off like it has. They wanted to share with a few family/friends. It became a smashing, worldwide success. It is a highly trafficked site. And what became of them? They are almost definitely millionaires because of it. How? Their fanstore. Yup, they became millionaires by selling college kids and teenagers trogdor t-shirts.

Figure it this way: If they sold 5 million t-shirts per year, and made a $1 profit on each of those t-shirts, and they put the 5 million in a mutual fund that gives at least 5% interest, that would be $250,000/year. From the interest. Without ever going to work. And that is a mighty conservative estimate since they sell way more than t-shirts in the store, and probably more than 5 million/year. For the record, Danny and I both have at least one Homestar Runner t-shirt each, and Jane has the "Poopsmith" onesie.

So they are rich, and famous, but not really THAT famous. Danny thinks they have attained the perfect level of fame: they have fans, but their own faces aren't that recognizable (they are sometimes featured on the site, but it is rare). Lots of people don't even know what Homestar Runner is. If they were the creators of "the Simpsons" then everybody would know who they are and what they have done. But the Brothers Chaps have become famous without becoming too famous, leaving them true freedom to enjoy their lives uninhibited by screaming, devoted, papparazzi-ish masses.

And they love what they do! "If you came over here and hung out with me and Mike while we're "working" for a couple days you'd just be like, "What are...what do you guys do?", "How do you...you're making money at this?", "What are you doing?" ...So, it's...pretty awesome." said Matt in 2003. They haven't updated their site for a long, long, long time. We know because we check nearly daily.

Rich, famous, and lovin' the job which they do when they want, and they neglect when they want. I'm not sure exactly how old they are, but I'm guessing early to mid thirties at oldest. They are both married and one of them has a kid.

So, they are my and Danny's exact definition of "success." They are also hilarious. Please, please, please, next time I graduate college, can you be the speaker? Then I would probably pay attention!


  1. What bank gives 5% interest. I would like to move my money.

  2. Hey good point. They should put their money in a long term mutual fund. Don't those average like 10-12% interest rates?


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