Failure and Disappointment

No matter how awesome you are, at some point, things aren’t going to work out right.  It’s a simple fact of life.  Your girlfriend breaks up with you, you get shot down by the girl of your dreams, you get laid off from work, or any of a number of possibilities.  All of these things happen to each and every one of us.

Photo by H. Michael Karshis
Photo by H. Michael Karshis

What defines a man in this regard is how he deals with it.

Everyone encounters it at some point, but the issue is that many can’t accept that it happens nor use it in a positive manner.

Several years ago, I bought a newspaper. This is long before Portlandia had someone do the same thing for laughs.  I really did it.

Unfortunately, it didn’t work out.  The reasons are irrelevant, but it didn’t.

It would have been easy to roll over and die.  Failure hurts, and because the success was pretty public, so was the failure.  That made it worse for me.

However, I thought about other fails throughout history.  In particular, Steve Jobs.  I read his biography a short time after he died, and I was struck with one very important thing.  Jobs failed. Continue reading “Failure and Disappointment”


The Roots of Gender Roles

In this day and age, there is a lot of talk about gender roles.  In the realm of politics, traditional gender roles are treated like the products of a thankfully bygone era that couldn’t have died too soon.  It’s like people believe that those roles existed solely so men could oppress women or something.

Photo from Flickr, by Quinn Dombrowski
Photo from Flickr, by Quinn Dombrowski

Author Sarah Hoyt, best known for her fiction writing but also a notable political and cultural writer, took aim at the topic a couple of days ago.  Some of you may be groaning, thinking, “Oh great.  Another woman to tell us just how much we suck.”

If you’re thinking that, then you don’t know Sarah.

Sarah isn’t just an author and commentator.  She’s also a dear friend, an ally of this site, and something of a mentor to me with my fiction writing.  In other words, she’s not the kind of woman we need to worry about.

Here’s what Sarah had to say: Continue reading “The Roots of Gender Roles”

Political Violence And The Modern Man

For most of my life, political violence just didn’t really happen here in the U.S.  That was something that happened over “there.”  Wherever “there” happened to be.  That’s not the case anymore.  For months now, the United States has been rocked by riots because some spoiled children didn’t like the outcome of the election.

Photo by Daniel Lobo, from Flickr
Photo by Daniel Lobo, from Flickr

So-called “antifascists” have decided that opposition to immigration–even opposition to illegal immigration, apparently–is akin to fascism.  In and of itself, that’s not a big deal.  After all, both sides like to throw around the “fascist” label a fair bit.

Unfortunately, these antifascists aren’t interested in debate.  They don’t want to try to beat their opponents with facts or better ideas.  No, they want to beat their opponents.  Literally.

Now, I’ll be honest.  I have absolutely no sympathy for racism or racists, so I really don’t care if they’re getting their ass beaten in and of itself.

The problem, however, is that labels are damn easy to sling around and now we’re dealing with people advocating violence against anyone with a certain label. Continue reading “Political Violence And The Modern Man”

World Gone Mad

I’ve been trying to figure out what I should be writing today, and my mind keeps going to events in Berkeley, CA on Wednesday night.  In case you missed it, protesters rioted over controversial speaker Milo Yiannapolous.

Let me start by saying I’m not really a Milo fan.  He pisses off all the right people, but he does it in some ways that I don’t really approve of.  He’s a provacateur, and I’m not sure that’s the way to really win the hearts and minds of those willing to be swayed.

However, the rioters are complete and total idiots.

Milo craves conflict.  While he may not actually want riots, he does want protests and screaming.  He wants to create a scene that he and his fanboys can point at and laugh.

This is one I’ve gotten more than a few laughs over, because I was familiar with this…individual long before she became famous as “Trigglypuff”.  In addition to a SJW, she’s a fat acceptance activist, which is freaking hysterical as it is.

With someone like Milo and his fans, this is ambrosia.  This is what they live for, and they love it completely.  When a social justice warrior melts down like this, they get a good laugh out of it.

Now, I won’t blame them, because I do too.

The difference is Milo goes out to instigated, trying to get these reactions.  Milo is a troll, for want of a better term.  He says and does things to get a reaction. Continue reading “World Gone Mad”

Men and Mental Health

Men don’t like to talk about their problems.  While some feminists will see this as a sign of so-called “toxic masculinity,” there are reasons why men are this way, and trying to chalk this up to the mythical Patriarchy is nothing but a waste of time when there are more important aspects of this issue to be discussed.

I’ve maintained that men are stoic, that they don’t sit around and tell everyone their problems and talk about their feelings.

Needless to say, I stand by that.

However, it has never been my contention that men shouldn’t ever talk about any of that. Continue reading “Men and Mental Health”

Loyalty Is A Two-Way Street

Recently, a friend of mine recounted the story of someone who preached loyalty to a given group, only to fail to reciprocate it when it was needed.  This friend needed help.  Not a lot, but an errand that would take about an hour or so, and no money on their part, but nope.  Nothing.  This despite years of “be loyal” lectures.

Photo by UCFFool, From Flickr
Photo by UCFFool, From Flickr

I shouldn’t have to feel obligated to say this, but loyalty needs to be a two-way street.

Instead, what often happens is that an individual–the one preaching the need for loyalty to a family, employer, team, or whatever–is really simply expecting someone to be loyal to them.  They often don’t really plan on returning that loyalty. Continue reading “Loyalty Is A Two-Way Street”

Seeing Manhood In Action Is A Thing of Beauty

First, I’d like to apologize for this being a little late.  Yesterday afternoon, my town was slammed by yet another nasty storm.  This one had a particularly deadly tornado attached to it.  Then, this morning, we lost power, possibly related to the storm, and we just got it back not all that long ago.

Julio Jones during training camp in 2013.  Photo courtesy of Thomson20192
Julio Jones during training camp in 2013. Photo courtesy of Thomson20192

Now, while the storm was bad, it didn’t take power or cable out for a good bit yesterday, and I got to at least experience a bit of joy after the bad.

I am, of course, referring to the NFC Championship game where my beloved Atlanta Falcons stomped the Green Bay Packers.

For us, it was a banner day, but I was particularly struck by the sheer manhood displayed by Falcons wide receiver Julio Jones.

Manhood, you ask?  Sure.  Allow me to explain. Continue reading “Seeing Manhood In Action Is A Thing of Beauty”