This past weekend was an interesting crossroads in my gentlemanly journey.
Saturday was an opportunity to participate in a prime gentlemanly activity: Helping a friend move.
Most people would employ any and every excuse to avoid this activity. But I look forward to it. It’s an exercise that includes nearly every aspect of gentlemanly living. For one thing, it’s an opportunity to wear ragged jeans, flannel and boots in an appropriate context. There is also a hefty dose of male bonding, modern courtesy / gallantry, and exercise.
I suppose men whose daily work is in the realm of tools, trucks and labor might not get the same thrill from these activities on a Saturday, but when you spend half your waking life in a desk, the prospect can be a little exciting. It can become a confirmation of your manliness. The dirty handed problem solving can appeal to the cave man inside of you.
Sunday, on the other hand, provided a reminder of how far I may have to go to become the grown man I aspire to be. It was the day of my fantasy baseball draft. Though it provided an equally strong dose of male bonding, it was remarkably less manly. By my current standards, it seemed almost juvenile. Hopefully a last major bastion of a suspended post-adolescence.
I think I can still rationalize most of it, as it essentially is a form of sports gambling. And my approach has at least evolved a bit. At this year’s draft I traded a baseball cap and sneakers for a cardigan and Sperrys. I swapped out an elaborately labeled spread sheet for a simple moleskin notebook. And I passed on cans of Coors Light, in favor of Crown Royal on the rocks.
Finally, perhaps feeling as though I had short changed my family on quality time over the weekend, I returned from the fantasy baseball draft with a brand new Wii Fit. It is a very fun way to get some exercise and strengthen your core muscles. And a supremely fun family activity. Though it certainly isn’t how our grandfathers would have rolled. The combination of yoga, step aerobics and bubbly video games could make for the most unmanly cocktail yet.