What Happens When Men Flee The Wild

Yesterday, as my kids and I jumped from the polished rocks of the Frio River into the pools below, the music began to play.

Across the river and downstream, someone began blasting country music through their truck’s stereo system, the darker music of the the wild beat back into the shadows.

Whenever I am in nature with crowds, it’s always the same:

Invariably there are those who experience the rustling of branches, the creaking of frogs, the bleating of cicadas not as some feast of sound to be relished, but as a void to be filled with their own noise, the unmitigated wild too much for them to bear.

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Man’s Special Constipation

Warning: scatological material ahead. Reader discretion is advised.

Remember Spitz sunflower seeds?

When I was in high school, Spitz sunflower seeds were all the rage. Buy a bag of those for the game, or the party, or the beach, and you knew you had hours of cracking spitting chewing pleasure ahead of you.

I always thought eating them was rather straightforward, but, as with most things in life, there’s always someone who muffs the obvious to hilarious effect.

As my buddy told it, years ago, some poor schmuck at summer camp challenged the natural order of sunflower seed eating, and paid for it dearly.

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The #1 Reason Entrepreneur Dads Burn Out

We’ve been taught that it takes, at minimum, 50+ hours of work each week to successfully start or grow a business.

This belief (what I call the “myth of hours”) sets up entrepreneur dads for failure and burnout.

For if business success truly does depend on you working that minimum 50+ hours, then every request your wife makes for you to grab milk on the way home, or work less hours, or take Friday afternoons off is a direct assault on your business… robbing it of the hours it MUST have to succeed.

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You look at your life in dismay:

How are you supposed to know health and vitality with THIS body?… this body that is so quick to fatten and so slow to muscle… this pale, short, flabby monstrosity that fills the bathroom mirror each morning?

And how are you supposed to know abiding love and passion with THIS marriage?… this wife that is so quick to scorn and so slow to affection… this grim, utilitarian, logistics-filled marriage that is so far from what you both imagined on your wedding day?

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What This Strange Autocorrect Taught Me About Marriage

Years ago after buying my first iPhone, I fat-fingered an “I love you” text to my wife, which my phone promptly autocorrected to “I live you.”

I thought it was funny, so I left it unchanged and hit send.

Now, years later, when I mis-type an I love you text, my damn iPhone is still as likely to autocorrect it to “I live you” as “I love you”… thanks, no doubt, to that confirming send all those years ago.

On the surface, it’s a trifle: one of many humorous yet meaningless quirks of modern life. But I’ve come to see in that nonsensical turn of phrase something unwittingly profound:

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Find Your Edge

Any biologist will tell you:

It is not deep within biomes that life proliferates, but at their points of overlap.

Whether it be the trout feeding at the lake’s surface, or the deer grazing where field and forest meet…

Life abounds at the edge.

It’s the same with your work.

The greatness, the largess, the kingship you long for will NOT be forged deep within your industry, safely ensconced:

It happens on the edges.

Until you push your craft to the far reaches… until you walk to the cliff edges of your own knowns… your life will never yield the transformations you long for.

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Bang Your Drum

You slide into your chair alert and nauseous, with bile in your throat.

All week you’ve waited for this moment… the beginning of your witching hour.

Whether if be the book you’ll write, the album you’ll record, the startup you’ll found… this is the time for creation you woke at dawn for, traded favors for, said no to House of Cards for…

The hard-won space in which you’re determined to establish a beachhead of freedom and impact and legacy… the hour in which you’ll finally crack your life open to the possibilities inherent within.

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One “Virtue” I’ll Never Teach My Kids

As the woman pulled the Christmas ham out of the oven, her son saw an odd feature:

Both ends were cut off.

When he asked his mother why she’d cut off the ends of the ham, she said that’s what HER mother had always done. She’d never thought to ask why.

They got grandma on the phone.

Turns out, grandma cut the ends off HER Christmas ham because that’s what HER mother had always done.

So they phoned up great grandma to get to the bottom of it.

After realizing she’d unwittingly started a multi-generational ham-trimming tradition, great grandma gave a long cackle into the phone: as it turns out, the one pan she’d owned back then was EXCEEDINGLY SMALL… so small, in fact, that she had to cut the ends off the ham every Christmas just to make it fit.

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What Happens When Men Shirk The Deep Fix

Last night, I saw a few grains of coffee grounds in our french press and began to rinse them off in the sink.

Strangely, the more I rinsed, the dirtier the press became.

Finally, muttering in annoyance, I did what I should have done at the outset and peered into the bottom of the press.

Sure enough, the whole damn load of coffee grounds was still in there, pressed against the bottom in a big wet cake.

No wonder the glass wouldn’t come clean: the more rinse water I flushed in, the more grains broke loose from the unseen mother-cake.

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Chains Invisible: How The New Slavery Stole Man’s Soul

Photo by 16210667@N02 [cropped]

Now that this year’s Independence Day fireworks are long gone, it’s time to hit you over the head with a hard truth:

It’s all a sham.

We are not “independent.” Not anymore.

When we were still a colony, our British oppressors posed a familiar, old-world form of threat.

Their oppression was singular, visible, and involuntary.

Now, 240 years later, we face an entirely new breed of tyranny.

Through a combination of our own growing sophistication, market forces, and scientific and technological advancement, this new form of oppression is infinitely more complex.

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