Man Book Club: An Apology?

man book club true dunce academyBy now we’ve all read or seen or heard about The New York Times article skewering all-male book clubs.  These groups, consisting entirely and exclusively of men, purportedly get together and do nothing but read books by men about men.  And, we can only assume from the context, also drink whiskey and tell sexist jokes and reminisce about the good old pre-women’s suffrage days. Whether this is genuinely newsworthy or just calculated clickbait, I’m not sure, but one thing is certain; the corresponding outrage is real. Continue reading

The Manual, by Steve Santagati (Get Incensed!!!)

the manualMy approach to literary criticism has gone through several phases.  When I was young (and dumb), I was very smug.  About books.  I hadn’t written anything myself, of course (still haven’t published anything), but just assumed I was talented, knew I was (very) intelligent, and figured my opinion mattered.  That people would care what I thought.  Should care, because clearly I was much brighter and more insightful and headed for greater greatness than they were. Continue reading

Succeed, or Die Trying

Speaking of the need for every man to strive for excellence, president Theodore Roosevelt declared:

“[and] if he fails, at least he fails while daring greatly, so that is place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory nor defeat.”

This reminds me of another of my favorite quotes, by Alfred Lord Tennyson:

” ‘Tis better to have loved and lost, than never to have loved at all.”

What is holding us back?  Are we paralyzed by the fear of rejection?  The fear of failure?  We need to get off our butts and try.

  • You can’t win if you don’t play;
  • You can’t succeed if you don’t try;
  • You can’t love without facing the risk of being rejected or losing that love.

If it was easy, everyone would be doing it.  But I don’t want to hang out with “those cold and timid souls.”  Do you?  I’m going on to glory, or out with a bang, but I’m not going out like that!

The Atlas is Coming

Three 90.1-pound bags of X5000 Premium Cement = $24.00

Two 25-pound bags of Plaster of Paris = $30.00

One 50-pound bag of sand = $4.00

One 5 gallon bucket = $3.00

One large playground ball = $2.99

Feeling like a man because your garage is full of 370+ pounds of manly Atlas Stone-making materials = PRICELESS!!!

I’m making an Atlas Stone next weekend; aiming for something in the 200 to 250 pound range.  I will post updates as they come.  I’m excited!

Oh Huggies, I’m So ANGRY With You!!!

"Now you've gone and made Daddy MAD!!!"

Unless you live in a cave, you know that Huggies is in big, BIG trouble right now.  Why?  Because they’ve gone and created a whole ad campaign  that depicts fathers as completely incompetent when it comes to childcare and baby wrangling.  And there’s just one thing I’d really like to know… WHO CARES??? Continue reading

Attacked by geese over lunch – never felt so alive!

What are YOU looking at?

Near my work, there is a pond, and around that pond, there is a path.  On those rare occasions when I can sneak away for a moment, I will sometimes go there: to walk, reflect, and commune.  With “nature.”

It is a picturesque setting, in its corporate park way, the “natural” beauty enhanced by several larger-than-life wood carvings that look like so many cast-offs from one of those lumberjack chainsaw-carving competitions. Continue reading

Another word for “babysitter”

find a childminderIf you ever really want to upset a mom, particularly a young, overworked, often frazzled stay-at-home mom, and you happen to see her out without her kids, say on an evening or a weekend, ask her something like “if you’re out, who is watching your kids?” or worse “hey, is your husband babysitting?  Isn’t that nice of him?”  I have it on good authority that they HATE this, the thinking being that the children are just as much the husband’s/father’s responsibility as they are the mother’s, and that’s not called babysitting, it’s called parenting.  Period.

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Reunited, and it feels so good

No, I’m not talking about an old high school girlfriend, a forgotten box of gourmet chocolates, a favorite book, or even a trusty pair of awesome green jeans (that I would still look GREAT in, by the way).  No, I’m talking about my lawn mower.  I just mowed my lawn for the first time since May.  And I’m surprised how much I have missed it. Continue reading

Man Gear- Dunce Edition

“Do you own a pair of steel-toed boots?” my co-worker asked me.  And I had to answer “no.”  And I must confess, I felt more than a little bit unmanly doing so.  Given where I work, it’s kind of a funny question.  But I needed some apparently, so went to Wal-Mart to pick up a pair.

I haven’t used them yet, and doubt I will use them more than once or twice a year.  If that.  But just owning them, I feel better.  Because it occurs to me that this is one of those things that it is just manly to own.

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