Last night while doing my normal web surfing before bed i stumbled on to an article that caught my attention. 27 Ways to Be a Modern, Man by Brian Lombardi, published on the New York Times’ website. Intrigued i started down the list of points that to Brian made someone a man. Some of which are fine, not good but fine and others that just make no sense to me at all.
1. When the modern man buys shoes for his spouse, he doesn’t have to ask her sister for the size. And he knows which brands run big or small.
2. The modern man never lets other people know when his confidence has sunk. He acts as if everything is going swimmingly until it is.
3. The modern man is considerate. At the movie theater, he won’t munch down a mouthful of popcorn during a quiet moment. He waits for some ruckus.
Just the first 3 on his list and i want to force choke this guy right through the screen. So here is my list of 27 things that i think make me an Actual Man. You be the judge.
1, Loyalty. Be loyal to your Wife/Girlfriend/Boyfriend/Friends/Family all of it. If you are in a relationship don’t be cheating or trash talking people you want to have your back. It was known as the Golden Rule in the old days, keep that shit in mind.
2, Ability to protect others, namely those you have granted your protection. This point is in contrast to one of Brian’s points, assuming they are in order of importance.
25. The modern man has no use for a gun. He doesn’t own one, and he never will.
This is just dumb. As long as there are people you want to protect then there will always be a reason to own and use a gun.
3, Be trained to handle a firearm. What i see as the main issue with guns is fear of the unknown. If there was a firearm class in High school that was required to graduate then a lot of the fear of guns would be greatly dispelled.
4, Have a hobby or two or more. To much in today’s life style we work and then zone out in front of the TV, just killing time until bed time to repeat the cycle. Think they call that living for the weekend. Everyone needs to get away from the old idiot box and yes that includes the computer sometimes.
5, Healthy eating habits. I happen to be a big fan of the Paleo lifestyle, yes i am a huge pile of man flesh from all the years of eating a drinking like i was left to die in a candy factory, but i am working on it. If eating Paleo is not your thing i understand, just don’t eat/drink yourself to an early grave if you can help it.
6, Being a parent to any kids you might have. This is really a sub point to the first point, but i want to be clear. Most of you are not donating sperm to a bank. You are making sons and daughters they need good role models. That doesn’t mean you can just send a check. You have to be involved in their lives. It is worth it.
7, Words are just words. Words only have the power to effect you if you give the people speaking them the power to do so. The only people with that power should be those you love and love you back.
8, Be prepared for any natural emergency. It is simple things, a few days of food and water for your family’s needs. A copy of important documents in a easy to access but secure place. I will point to point 2 and suggest that a firearm is a good idea.
9, Punishments must be balanced with the crime. In my house hold we spanked when needed, which was almost never as it was rare that a spanking fit the misdeed. But it was an option. Now most of the punishments we dole out is no Youtube (for fun) or video games and that is for not turning in homework on time. See rule 6
10, Be the Hero you wish you were. If you see something happening that is wrong step up and take action to correct things. Now i am not telling you to be Batman…. Unless you can…. Then be Batman. But if you see someone hitting another person maybe you should interject, if you see someone looking for a meal hand them one.
11, History is a thing. Just saying learn from your, the nation’s and the world’s past avoid the pit falls that history teaches.
‘Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.’ – George Santayana
12, Be comfortable with your imitations but test them constantly.
13, Be able to share your thoughts and feelings freely. Let the people you love know that you love them.
14, Hold your Liquor. Drink responsibly and never drink and drive.
15, Honor our armed service. Always remember those who are willing to go into harms way to protect you. Your rights are defended in blood.
16, Respect the Police. Most police officers are just people doing a thankless job trying to keep you safe. The system is not perfect and in many places flawed but we must work with in the law unless we are Batman.
17, Work hard and Smart. Totally stealing that line from Mike Rowe, but we can work hard while being smart about it.
18, Crack a book and not just the newest fiction you love but non-fiction books too.
19, Ask for help. It is okay to ask for help if you need it. No one is going to take away your man-card for asking.
20, Be able to take a joke and joke about ourselves. Not everyone can do this. It is like a super power.
21, Try and forgive those that wronged you. Are there unforgivable sins? I don’t know i am not God. But i really do try and forgive those that have wronged me. I know I have wronged others and i hope that they can forgive me.
22, Take some time for spiritual exploration. I am not saying you have to study religion, but as i bad Christian i hope you pick up a Bible, but you can learn a lot from the different spiritual paths. There is a lot of positive stuff that comes from exercising that portion of your brain or so modern Science says.
23, Question everything you see and hear. There is a lot of information out there, true and false. You have to be the judge.
24, Know yourself. We all change over time, do you know how you have changed?
25, John Wayne was the MAN. Have you seen his best works? How many of this list of movies have you watched? Do you need to expand your movie experience?
26, Play games. I mean card games, board games, video games, and/or physical sports bring your loved ones in on the fun. Games are fun and they keep you on your mental as well as physical toes.
27, Live for today as well as plan for tomorrow. It is hard to have fun today and save and build for the later years. We all are moving into the future and someday tomorrow will be the now. Will you be ready? There is going to be times where your only happiness will come from looking back at the past and being happy with what you remember. But it is a lot easier to look back fondly when you are active and living your life in the way best possible manor.
I am going to throw one more in a overall goal that i have been working towards. An idea totally stole from Scott Mosier.
Life your life with the idea that joy is best in the long run. Pleasure is just a flash in the pan, it is like a drug. It takes more and more pleasure to beat that last high if you are chasing it. But if you live in a constant level of joy with moments of pleasure you will be happier overall.
I am sure i didn’t do that justice. But it was my best crack at explaining it in text.
Anyway, while the title is about being a Man, most of these thoughts can apply to ladies as well.