Wine is a beautiful thing. My wife and I started using wine as our go-to because it’s relatively cheap, and now we’re members at two (2) local wineries. For three seasons out of the year, I can’t think of a better weekend activity. It’s not nearly as yuppie and pretentious as you might imagine, though you can pretend it is if that’s your prerogative. It’s cheap. It’s social. It’s informative. Depending on where you are, it can even be a little historic. Virginia, for instance, has been producing wine for about as long as Virginia’s been a thing. Anyway, even though there’s no reason wine can’t be enjoyed by drinkers of all ages, it’s a little daunting for younger adults. That’s why I wrote this weeks column at AskMen.com with those readers in mind. A snippet:
Provided you have a handful of wineries within, say, an hour or two of your residence, there are a couple of ways you could go about visiting them. You can absolutely load your Forerunner beyond capacity with your bros, cue up a sick playlist on your iPod and let your freak flag fly. Jam out to the Black Keys. Pretend not to like it when “Call Me Maybe” plays. Laugh when Deanna Carter’s “Strawberry Wine” comes on, because LOL, guys, we’re going wine tasting! Then cry a little, because if you listen to the words, that song is actually pretty sad.
You could certainly do all that, or you could stop being a moron and go wine tasting with a single female, the way God and condom manufacturers intended. Women love wine tasting, probably more than they love wine itself. True fact, going wine tasting ignited the romance between me and the wife with whom I am now blessed (or saddled, it’s too soon to tell). It’s also a fine date alternative to coed bocce or kickball or whatever other contrivance young adults use as an excuse to cling to their youth and drink inhuman quantities of cheap beer.
Read the rest at AskMen here. Give it some facebook love, because right now it’s getting beat out by an article called “How to Lose Man Boobs.” If you are someone who enjoys reading things that are good, you simply cannot abide that.
If you’ve read my last two politically-minded posts, you’ve more or less read this one. I’m sorry. Thankfully for all of us, the election being over means I actually have to think of things to write about. Read the full article (and give it a “like”, it’s trucking along so far) here on AskMen
Are you a guy who uses the services of an online dating site to land chicks? Are you a cheap bastard who uses the free ones, like OKCupid? Are you an idiot who approaches women with the subtlety of a muscle car that’s missing its catalytic converter? If so, you may soon be featured on my latest interview subject’s website, A(n)nals of Online Dating. Whenever someone sends a message that’s creepy, of the canned “PUA” variety, or both, not only does Satan touch himself a little and start clearing space, but there’s a good chance it’ll end up here. I spoke with the proprietor about why guys can’t get through their heads the idea that talking about their genitals is not an effective romantic strategy.
IL: Any theories as to why that is? I mean, in my experience, it’s the men who have to do most of the blind initial messaging, so maybe it’s a law-of-averages thing — with so many messages, some are bound to be creepy.
OB: I think it probably is part a law-of-averages thing and part a cultural thing. Despite increased gender equality, it’s still expected that men do the asking out and the leading when it comes to dating. So men pick who they want to date, and women either accept or reject. And online that’s magnified because you have so many people to choose from and none of the visual cues that help you to differentiate between creeps and not-creeps in the real world.
So you have a lot of guys who are trying really hard to set themselves apart and end up coming off as really weird or creepy, like guys who use pickup-artist techniques online. And then you have guys who say or do things online that they would never do face-to-face, because it would be too awkward— like initiating a conversation with “I would love to put my tongue in your ass.”
I’ll say this much, you have to appreciate the guy who casually tosses out an offer to put his tongue in a girl’s ass as his official online handshake. Is it efficient? Not at all, but he’s casting a wide net. Next time you’re talking to a friend or coworker who’s a little too pleased with himself and whose breath smells a little “off”, congratulations, because you’re looking at proof of concept personified.
AskMen chose a photo of pres. Obama because why not, but I picked a photo of Patton because I think we can all agree he was about 1,000% more badass than Barry. Or anyone else, really. The article’s about what makes leaders so compelling to us, why we’re almost reflexively drawn to anything related to leaders or would-be leaders. Here’s a taste, a little tease. Just the tip, if you will:
I think much of it has to do with the mystique that surrounds their jobs. Few of us have any concrete idea of what the CEO of a large company actually does on a day-to-day basis besides make lots of money. Baseball managers are perhaps even more enigmatic: Their job appears to consist merely of trips to the pitcher’s mound, talking on the dugout phone and chewing tobacco.
Read the rest at AskMen
This may come as a surprise, but for reasons unbeknownst to even me I don’t write every article that appears on AskMen.com (just the best ones). I can’t say I’m a huge fan of all of the site’s content, but it’s usually compelling enough and sometimes there are some real gems produced by other freelance authors. For example, if you have a little extra time, take a look at this beautifully written (if not exhaustive) expose on America’s favorite insult, “douchebag”
One can only admire the art and agility with which “douchebag” tiptoes through the gender minefield. Never directly referencing the female sex organs the way that “pussy” or “twat” do, it manages, nevertheless, to taint by a subtle whiff of association. It is an equal-opportunity insult, avoiding the allusions to race and class that have characterized so many of its ilk. Douchebags can be rich or poor, straight or gay, black, white, Samoan, or Icelandic (though Europeans do seem to be a tad over-represented). Somewhere, at this very moment, a little person is no doubt standing in front of a mirror, practicing his pickup lines and admiring his freshly waxed chest. There are douchebags playing in the NBA, running for Congress and hosting the nightly news. Anyone, regardless of who they are or where they come from, can be a douchebag.
Though I can’t profess to ever having waxed my chest (ok fine I have shaved the hair around the nipple region before, but who wouldn’t?) or practiced pickup lines anywhere other than on actual women, I have at various times (both recently and in college, where I probably deserved it) been called a douchebag by someone who meant it. And I think Robbie Dillon hit the nail right on the head. It’s a beautiful insult for many reasons. The way it rolls off the tongue is more eloquent than a good “fffffuck you” yet no less stinging. It can be said in mixed company without raising eyebrows.
Most importantly, it’s that rare breed of insult that can be damning and aggrandizing at the same time. Depending on who calls you a douchebag, it’s either a signal to reign yourself in or puff your chest out even further. I know that in college, after dominating a team on the beer pong table via both skill and a slew of creative slurs and insults, being called a douchebag by some lame GDI was the highest of high praise. My initial reaction to what was at the time such a flaccid insult was to remove my shirt, shotgun a beer, shout “come at me bro” to the next team of victims and continue to accuse my female partner of flirting in an attempt to “seal the deal” later that night as we enjoyed the spoils of beer pong superstardom.
I certainly don’t miss those days and admittedly find them at times cringeworthy, but nevertheless I remember them fondly. Still, I can’t help but be impressed by “douchebag’s” continued endurance and relevance in a time where internet memes are considered passé before your mom even has a chance to forward them to you.