Category Archives: Masculinity
(Previously: See here.)
Funny; I did a post a year ago today on ‘Movember‘, as it happens…
But this isn’t about that; it’s about a beard contest, the World Beard Championships, held recently in Germany.
Though there was at least one fellow with no beard but an awesome ‘stache.
Here then, just for fun, are some pics of some contestants. Manly AND eccentric; rock that facial hair! :)
A year ago, I wrote about the ‘mancave’ phenomenon.
My opinions on the matter are still mixed as they were then – I like the idea of married men having a space or spaces within their home in which they can feel comfortable, and spend time apart from their wives, places possibly with a bit more masculine décor; but, I don’t like the idea that the rest of the house is ‘hers’, to decorate entirely according to her tastes, etc., and that he is only ‘allowed’ such a space on the sufferance of ‘the Boss’, all too common amongst Blue Pill men; a place he feels a need to ‘retreat’ to, rather than merely relaxing in.
But, all that aside, if you’re gonna have a ‘mancave’, or whatever else you want to call such a space, for whatever reasons, I think it’s reasonable to expect that it should be entirely yours, and have nothing to do with your wife, her tastes, her comfort level (since it’s not for her), etc.
Well, today, I read an article in a free daily local ‘zine by a married female columnist that gets it all wrong. There is no permanent link to the story, as the paper’s website doesn’t store articles by text, only displaying pages of each day’s paper as images. But here is a capture of the page with the article in question:
Mrs. Kloet claims to see the value in such a space, but:
I do worry about a space that looks more frat-like than feminine.
Uh, the whole point is that such a space would be HIS, not YOURS, so why should he or we give a shit what you think?
Enter some douchebag ‘design consultant’ guy, who markets himself towards men who don’t want their spaces to be ‘too masculine’, apparently:
According to Damon Snider, owner of D-Type Living, a Toronto-based home design company for the modern man, a man cave should blend seamlessly into the rest of the home without appearing overly macho.
Uh, why? If it’s his space, not hers, why shouldn’t it be more ‘macho’ if he wants that?
And he goes on to argue that:
“The first thing to keep in mind is that you want women to feel comfortable in the space, too,” he says.
No you don’t! They’re not going to be in there, if it’s truly a man cave; if they never go in, what cause would they ever have to feel uncomfortable, anyway? Sheesh!
As one can see, the article goes on to explain how Snider has made it his mission to convert men away from “hard edges and dark colours everywhere” towards a more ‘balanced’ look.
For instance, regarding traditionally-favoured masculine décor such as sports paraphernalia and automotive stuff:
“Display things strategically rather than filling every empty surface with something stuffed with testosterone,” he says.
Ah, yes; heaven forbid that men should decorate their spaces like men!
And don’t be afraid to stray from typical dark leather furnishings and glossy black surfaces. Instead, opt for neutral wall colours and add splashes of colour through graphic artworks, photographs, or “dude-approved” wall hangings to bring the room to life.
Hey, I have an idea; why not let men decide for themselves what they each might want for their ‘den’ or ‘man cave’; some will opt for vintage 19th-century European alcoholic beverage posters, and some will opt for mounted deer heads (of ones they hunted successfully), or sports hero posters; men have varied interests, so one should expect that would be reflected. Why should any one particular look be deemed better than others? De gustibus non est disputandum, as the old maxim goes.
But of course, he goes on to encourage the ‘ladies’ (as Mrs. Kloet says) to ‘lend a stylish eye’ while not ‘going overboard on girlish touches’. As if they have any business giving any such advice to their husbands for such a space – unless he of course asks for it (though I can’t imagine why any man would want to).
So, there it is. Not even the ‘man cave’ is allowed to be free of female or metrosexual design consultant influence, according to Canadian progressive SWPL dogma.
Writing at the Telegraph, he takes a dissident view of the whole ‘Movember’ phenomenon.
Don’t be fooled by the manly moustaches – Movember is all about turning blokes into sad, sober, simpering wrecks
By Brendan O’Neill
It’s Movember! Yes, the month previously known as November, until it was hijacked by health-obsessed hipsters with ‘taches, is upon us. This means that for the next 30 days, your Facebook and Twitter feeds will be clogged up by blokes imploring you to check out Instagram photos of how their pencil ‘tache, handlebar or Fu Manchu is progressing. The aim of Movember – a hilarious mashing together of the words “moustache” and “November”! – is to get guys around the world sprouting facial hair in the name of charity, specifically as a way of raising awareness about male cancer. The idea is that fuzz starts to form atop your gob, someone asks “why are you growing a ‘tache?”, and then you tell them all about Movember and its various prostate and testicular cancer initiatives. So you get to look dashing and be totally socially responsible all at the same time. Win.
God, I hate Movember. And not only because growing a ‘tache for cancer encourages men to make a big, hairy, public display of their caring, charitable side, which overlooks the wise advice of historian William Hutton: “The charity that hastens to proclaim its good deeds ceases to be charity, and is only pride and ostentation.” No, even worse than that is what Movember has done to the moustache. It has completely ruined it. It has single-handedly reversed the entire meaning of the mo’. In the past, men grew ‘taches to demonstrate their masculinity, to let the world know they were strong and virile and maybe a bit mental: think bushy Burt Reynolds or ‘tache-tastic Tom Selleck. Now, courtesy of Movember, we’re invited to grow ‘taches to show that we’re “in touch” with our bodies and feelings, that we’re “health aware”, that we are willing, in the words of the Movember website, to imitate “the efforts of women, who proactively and publicly address their health issues in a way not traditionally seen with men”. In short, where growing a ‘tache was once about saying “I AM MAN”, now it’s about publicly advertising one’s effeminacy.
Don’t be fooled by the seemingly manly ‘taches – the true aim of Movember is to remake men as permanently panicked navel-gazers who never smoke or drink or eat junk food and instead have interminable conversations with their mates about their testicles and prostates. The overseers of Movember complain that young men are “indifferent towards their health”. Apparently blokes have a problematic “‘it’ll be alright’ attitude”, which leads to a “reluctance” to openly discuss “health issues”. Men need to be more like women, says the Movember website; we are currently “trailing the women’s health movement” and thus lots of “established taboos and barriers relating to men’s health [must be] broken down”. Movember aims to do this by encouraging men everywhere to regularly examine their testicles for lumps, get prostate check-ups, go to the doctor whenever they feel remotely unwell, and stop being “embarrassed to discuss health issues”.
Movember has lots of health tips for us dumb, I’m-alright-Jack blokes. First, of course, “Don’t Smoke”, because that’s really bad for you. Also, you must “Know Your Body” – that is, feel yourself (no, not like that!), look for lumps, gawp at yourself in a mirror, and “if something seems out of the norm, alert your doctor”. We must “Eat A Healthy Diet” – “fill up with fruit, vegetables and whole grains!” “Stay At A Healthy Weight”, too, because being overweight “poses a major risk for chronic diseases”. And here’s a biggie: “Drink Alcohol Only In Moderation.” Ideally we should “not drink more than 3-4 units of alcohol each day, the equivalent to a pint-and-a-half of 4% beer”.
Here, we can see the New Labour-like petty authoritarianism and health freakery that lurks behind the super-ironic veneer of the Movember campaign: what presents itself as a jokey, blokey international sporting of hilarious ‘taches is in fact a drive to make men, especially young men, into smoke-free, sober, fruit-chomping, testicle-checking bores who should never drink more than a pint-and-a-half of beer in a day (are they serious?). What this uber-patronising campaign overlooks is that if young men really do have an “‘it’ll be alright’ attitude”, that’s because it probably will be alright: young men, and young women too, are healthier than they have ever been, and are less likely than any generation in history to die in the workplace or contract a serious illness or fail to make it to middle age. It is perverse to encourage young men who have the privilege of living in a safe, medically advanced society to spend more of their time panicking about their health and darting off to the doctor’s at the merest hint of a cough or ache. They surely have better things to do, like eat steaks, get drunk, have casual sex.
If anything is bad for our health, it is the demand that we become ever more health-obsessed. What good can come from making men panicky, insecure, freaked out every time a bit of their body looks a bit different to how it looked last week? Indeed, studies suggest that the constant promotion of the cult of testicular self-examination among young men, which Movember fully supports, is leading to more and more “false positives”, with blokes having chemotherapy and even surgery that they don’t actually need. This is the irony: Movember – or at least the hectoring, health-obsessed thinking behind it – can make you sick. Don’t fall for it, lads. Don’t cave in to the demand that we should be more “aware” and constantly on alert for ailments and troubles. Screw Movember. Shave off the mo’. Be a man.
The word ‘bro’ is an obvious abbreviation of ‘brother’, and to the extent that I use it, which is exceedingly rarely, that’s how I’ve always used it; whether to denote a male friend one is close to, or just as the equivalent of saying ‘man’ or ‘dude’ or ‘guy’, etc. to a male acquaintance (as in the well-known phrases “Don’t taze me, bro!” or “U mad bro?“) Wiktionary defines it similarly, too, as does UrbanDictionary in the first part of the first definition.
However, UrbanDictionary also supplies some other definitions which affix certain characteristics, interests, fashions, tastes, and personal hobbies to the term ‘bro’. I have encountered this in other places, too; if one Googles the term ‘bro’, one comes across the site Brobible, which is a site dedicated to various male interests: girls, sports, partying, music, entertainment, ‘gear’, etc. Then there’s also the term ‘bro code‘, to which a number of sites are dedicated to explaining as a set of principles to live by…
Recently, the Atlantic’s new channel “The Sexes” featured an article by some chick named Eleanor Barkhorn, entitled “Toward a Working Definition of ‘Bro’“, which examined a recent Craigslist posting from the Washington, D.C. area, which has since been pulled, but of which they got a screencap before it disappeared. The Craigslist posting was entitled “$800 Seeking Renaissance Bro to Assimilate into Existing Bro Community” – the posters were apparently looking for a roommate who meets their definition of what a ‘bro’ is, hoping no doubt to find someone quite similar to themselves in terms of interests, and one might even say, worldview, so they’d have not just a roommate but a new bud to hang out with, etc. The chick journo from the Atlantic quotes a portion:
Let us define the term bro. We’re not the “bro” you see on MTV, or any “bro” you see wearing Ed Hardy/Affliction T-shirts. We’re not bros with Nantucket red shorts, boat shoes, and croakies. We’re not the Magic The Gathering/D&D Bros. We are just sensible guys that enjoy immature forays on weekends and intellectual box socials on weekdays. We enjoy the outdoors and traveling. We read a lot of books and discuss the best way to layer the contents of a BLT. We’re not all fart jokes and dildo-hats though. We both have legit 9-5 jobs, graduate degrees, and high levels of general awareness. We have a strong group of bros (approx 30-45 across the eastern seaboard) that come in and out on a regular basis throughout the week/weekends for Monday/Thursday night football, movie night, or bro dinners at sick steakhouses. I know this is a lot, and there is no way I can cover all areas of our bro community, but I hope this weeds out some of the unsavory “bros” out there.
And then she snarks:
So, bros are immature, intellectual, jet-setting, social-butterfly foodies. Got it.
The posters also seem to act as if ‘bros’ should talk in a certain way, given the wording of their ad (some of it just strikes me as bizarre, even if in jest; for instance, when the guy says “My roommate and I are 29 years old, have known each other since freshman year of college, and can basically describe each others’ taints with our eyes closed.” WTF? That comes across so gay, even though I highly doubt they are; guess I’m just too ‘old-school’ to talk like that.).
So what the hell is a ‘bro’ / what are ‘bros’? Just a term to denote a fellow guy? Just guys who are close friends with similar interests? Or does it describe a somewhat specific subculture of sorts, to which one doesn’t belong if one doesn’t meet certain criteria? (If so, no doubt no ‘theater fags’ or non-sports-fans need apply…) Or is it all or none of these things? Or is it beyond precise definition? And just what the hell exactly is ‘bromance‘?
What do y’all think?
Here at Patriactionary, we consider our blog to be more or less at the intersection of the manosphere and the tradosphere / orthosphere, in terms of our interests and foci (‘focuses’ for the Latin-challenged) as ‘Red Pill’ patriarchal reactionary traditionalist Christian men.
Really? How sad, that sodomites have so captured the word ‘man’ that any association with it somehow seems homo in the minds of some.
As for the supposed replacement ‘cocktagon’, actually referencing the male organ sounds way more queer than just referring to our common masculinity in the term ‘manosphere’, no? It does to me, as does ‘cockosphere’…
I agree that neither ‘androsphere’ nor ‘homosphere’ are suitable (they’re both worse, and even more queer-sounding)…
Why not just leave well enough alone?
Stop being over-sensitive, you ‘manosphere’-term haters! We’re men; why not acknowledge that in our name?
While I’m on the subject, are men who take an interest in dressing well, cooking, the arts, etc., any less manly than those who prefer professional sports? Because the fear of the term ‘manosphere’ strikes me as the sort of hyper-masculine bullshit that gets people who like the arts labelled ‘theater-fags’, even if they’re straight. Why can’t straight guys like theatre, the arts, even dancing, the way true ‘renaissance men’ did in times past?
Why let the outside world dictate what is and isn’t ‘masculine’? Why can’t ‘real men’ eat quiche or drink wine?
Really, that attitude is all a case of realmannspracht, and if the manosphere is to be about anything, shouldn’t we free ourselves from allowing outsiders to tell us what constitutes a ‘real man’? Especially, shouldn’t Christians take their cue from Scripture? All men are real men, simply due to being created in the image of God, thus bearing the Imago Dei. That’s what a real man is, and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.
Or tell you we shouldn’t identify as men, in terms of that phrase ‘manosphere’, nor like things other men don’t.
Fuck that. I’ll like what I like, and not like what I don’t like (e.g. I’m not much for sports), and I don’t care what others think of me for my tastes / preferences. What could be more manly than not caring what others think?
Why not NOT let queers capture terms like ‘man’, NOR let others dictate what is and what isn’t ‘truly’ manly? Why not tell both of them to get stuffed – and go your own way… :)
(Like me using emoticons, or linking Cracked articles in my linkfests; not toeing any party line, am I? Hmmm.)