Maria be off a babysattin' so I's a hijackin' this here blog!
Yeah, we've been watching a good bit of Duck Dynasty & are prepping for some Here Comes Honey Boo Boo & Swamp People! Guilty pleasures, LOL! My country accent is coming out! I'll try to tame it though, as I want to speak to the men out there... so ladies, no offense, you can read it, but after you do, ask your husbands to read it. Not being sexist, just have to start my New Year's resolution.
A lot of people make very self-centered New Year's resolutions; I want to lose weight, I want to eat healthier, I want to stop smoking, I want to climb the Zugspitz; lots of I's in there, huh? I (see, even your fearless blogger is not immune!) was like that all my life. I want to increase my bench 50lbs before next football season (1993), I want to learn to play guitar (1995), I want to find a girl I can spend the rest of my life with (2000); I spent a lot of New Year's resolutions on me, and that is not so bad. It is good to focus on you and your life, but this year, I decided to break out of my normal mold.
It took me almost a solid week after the New Year had started to figure out exactly what I wanted to devote myself to this year. I want to make the men around me, better men. Okay, yeah, I hear the snickers & chuckles out there. How can I make a man better if I am not the model that men should be made after? (I am though if you ask my wife! LOL!) Easy, that's not what I am talking about! :) I don't want men to be like me... I'm not the perfect man. No one man, save Jesus Christ, can stake claim to the title The World's Perfect Man. We should all be striving to be like Jesus; we should all be striving to be the perfect man. While this is admirable, this isn't exactly what I am talking about either.
Okay, I'll stop delaying. Do me a favor. Open a new tab in whatever browser you are using. Dial up Google and do a search for "emasculation of man". Here, I did the math so you wouldn't have to (I got your back like that!)... 388,000 results, and many of you have no idea what I am talking about or exactly what you just searched for. So, here's the definition, e-mas-cu-late: verb- to deprive a man of his male role or identity. Synonyms- castrate, geld, weaken, evirate. Ouch, huh? This is what I, as well as many others have been seeing across the years. Gone are the John Wayne's (I challenge you to find many men out there that could match John Wayne's role in The Quite Man!), the Chuck Norris's (Chuck Norrisi?), the Clint Eastwood's, the Burt Reynold's of America. They are few and far between, and when you do find a manly man, he is a tough guy, and unfortunately, usually a real tool. I'm not implying that they are all gone, but they sure have become an endangered species. Nowadays, you are more likely to come across a Robert Pattinson than a Sean Connery at your local gym/laundry/barber shop... oh wait, lil' Rob hits the salon and probably enjoys a healthy dose of girl talk while they buff his nails.
Columnist Gabrielle Hoffman stated in an article on the emascualtion of men that at one time, manliness was what every young boy wanted to achieve. She's right, that's why we had heroes like Superman, Patton and Evil Knievel... men who did what was right despite the odds, men who showed bravery beyond their bodies capabilities, people who were honorable. We wanted to be these guys because of the types of manly traits they displayed. Unfortunately, like Brett McKay of The Art of Manliness puts it, if you look to men's magazines today, you are going to find 14 billion articles about how to get 6-pack abs or about sex. This is not what being a man is about ya'll. I bet in all the men's magazines you have read in your entire life, not one of them taught you how to sharpen an ax... yes, an ax guys. You know, that's the tool that used to have the purpose of chopping down trees, not just the murder weapon of the mad man in this months flavor of horror flick. If America had not lost manliness by the oil tanker ship load over the past 2 decades, we all would have been taught this trait from our dad's and grandpa's... oh, wait, today we're lucky if we can get a dad or grandpa to stay around (yet another lost manly trait, being able to fix things, even relationships). It's time we start reclaiming manliness, and passing it down to the pale faced, wanna-be vampire boys... as my new role model Phil Robertson would probably put it, we need to teach them yuppie boys how to be men.
A manly man doesn't have to be a tough guy like John L. Sullivan (if you know who this is, you are on your way though!) but he does need to be able to defend himself and his family; he doesn't have to be MacGyver (yep, I just blew some young'uns minds right there) and be able to fix a fighter jet with a ball point pen, a stick of chewing gum and his Victroinox (which was the Spartan, then later a Traveler, then back the Spartan model... yeah, I just geeked out, huh?) but he should be able to use basic tools and improvise fixes when in a jam; nor does he have to be the most "dapper" of guys in the crowd but he better know how to present himself in a professional manner and dress for whatever situation he may find himself in. A manly man, is well rounded, and exudes manly characteristics. He may not be able to fix a 1969 Mustang, but he's willing to try to learn. He may not know much about fashion, but he knows how to wear the basics and looks professional. He may not know the proper way to use every tool under the sun, but he respects the reason the tool was created and will probably strive to learn how to use it properly. He's that guy you instantly notice when he walks in the room, the bar, the office Christmas party. There's just something about him, and sometimes you can't put your finger on it. He's the one people go to because he is honest, an upstanding citizen, and willing to help.
If we as men follow the Biblical Proverb that says "As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another" (Prov. 27:17) we can regain those lost values, skills, and character traits that defined a man. Those men of the past, there was no denying their manliness. Many would be ashamed of the state of manliness these days. Let's band together and re-masculate America... for our sake, for our families sake, for our nation's sake.