How I’m Celebrating International Men’s Day

The morning begins as any other day.

I don’t have a calendar. Instead, I carve notches into an oak tree just outside my bedroom. I count the notches and realize what day it is. November 19th, International Men’s Day.

Time for some manly pursuits.

First, I must pay my respects. I bow before a bust of Ron Swanson and give him my offerings three. First, a rasher of artisanal bacon, cooked just so. Next, two fingers of Lagavulin poured neat. And finely, I place in front of him a antique crafting hatchet.

And so the day begins.

First, of course are the morning ablutions. After I look in the mirror and notice that I have grown a full beard through the night. On any other day, I could go weeks without needing to shave, but today, the whiskers have sprouted forth in a testament to a testosterone fueled day of excellence.

My only problem is that now I must constrain my mighty mane. I check my options.

Safety razor? Nah, not manly enough.

Hand forged straight razor? Getting closer.

Instead, I find the answer. I take a chunk of flint, and knap it. The concoidial fractures turning the hunk of rock into a fine blade. Now I can tame my new found facial fur.

Finally once my hirsute problems have been restrained it’s time for breakfast. I sit at a table and pour myself a bowl of saw dust. Saw dust you say? Yes, good source of fiber. I then of course cover it with the requisite of milk. I didn’t even need to milk the cow. It just gave it to me.

And now for a full day of manly pursuits. Time to find an engine. What kind of engine? Doesn’t matter. Just find one and work on it. I decided to alternate between a Ford F-150 and a John Deere tractor, whatever seems manlier at the time.

Do I know anything about engines? No, I do not. Will that stop from me from puttering around said vehicles with an absolute conviction that I know what I’m doing? It will not.

And so I will work, in blue jeans, and white t-shirt to perfect the James Dean vibe I’m cultivating. I will then grunt, and wave, at neighbors about to perform the same tasks and they will grunt and wave back.

I will take coffee breaks. Many coffee breaks. Will I use my caramel macchiato and add it to my cold brew?

No, I will not. Not on this day.

Today, I will drink it hot and black.

Will it taste terrible? Yes.

And now, I will sojourn to the woods. But first I my change. I go to the closet and find a room full of flannel, the manliest fabric. And so I leave my house to find firewood.

Why firewood you ask? Isn’t your home heated by natural gas?

Because you can’t curate a perfect lumbersexual Instagram in front of a thermostat now can you?

And I walk into the woods looking like the Brawny paper towel man, with a perfectly sharpened ax on my shoulder. I walk through the woods with a proud gait and straight back. A bear walks out and I stare and the bear decides to go a different path this day.

And finally I reach the top of the mountain, and an eagle lands of my arm.

I stare at the eagle.

The eagle stares back.

I keep staring and the eagle nods and flies away.

On the way home I hoist a load of firewood and glower at someone wearing a man bun.

Finally, it’s time for dinner. For tonight I will eat a great hunk of beast, that I chased down myself, and from said beast I extricated a rib eye steak so large that Fred Flintstone would balk at eating it. It’s cooked rare over an open flame, only adorned with rock salt.

And now to settle in.

I find my favorite room in the house. It’s not even a man cave. It’s just a cave.

There I find my well worn leather chair and I adorned my antique smoking jacket. I light a pipe and contemplate the day before settling down and watching the three manliest movies of all time.

Bridge Over The River Kwai

Dirty Harry

and Pitch Perfect.

Pitch Perfect you say?

No, I’ll watch that tomorrow I just wanted to see if you were still reading.

Knute Rockne All American.

So I settle in, with a large hound sleeping at my feet and the fire roaring. Also while I watch I will read the collected works of Ernest Hemingway.

Finally, I will go to bed while listening to World War II podcasts, and wait for another year.

Matthew Donnellon is a writer, artist, and sit down comedian. He is the author of The Curious Case of Emma Lee and Other Stories.

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