Trials Of Manhood

It’s Theme Blog Day! Huzzah! My ol’ muckamuck Scruffy Craig and I do this from time to time so go read his take here.

For a while now, I’ve pondered what it means to be a man. Here in South Africa, we have a certain idea of what a Man is. Drink beer, braai, watch sport etcetera. Is that it? Is that the definition of a Man?

I guess it started the other day when one of my friends was sad. He’d had his heart trampled upon by a lady, as that is seemingly what they do for fun, and he invited me out for a beer. Now let it be known that I have a long history of being anti-beer. The smell alone brings the bile. But he had his puppy eyes on and my empathy was in full swing so I obliged. And struggled my way through a full pint of Peroni. Perhaps I have ‘acquired the taste’ as I didn’t immediately vomit on his shoes. But it was at this point that he said “I’ll make a man of you yet!” Ah fantastic! If I drink beer, and perhaps get a leather jacket emblazoned with a lone wolf, girls will love me! The secret is revealed! Meh. I’ll stick to whiskey thanks.

Braais. For those of you in America and other countries, it is akin to a barbeque. Kinda. In the UK it’s akin to standing in the rain and moping. Here’s the thing. It’s not that I can’t braai. It’s just that I have intention of being ‘That Guy Who Braais’. I don’t want to be that guy who gets stuck handling another man’s sausage. Plus, I seem to have the smoke curse. Y’know, no matter where you stand the smoke snakes after you, making you smell like a volunteer firefighter. So I’d rather be somewhere else, somewhere less smokey. Drinking a whiskey.

Sport, I’ll admit, I’ve grown into. I enjoy a spot of cricket on occasion and I love playing tennis. But that most manly of manly pursuits, the rugby, eludes me. I’m not in favour of any particular team, like the Blue Balls or whatever their names are, nor do I pretend to understand the rules. As far as I understand, it’s much like life in that you can only score if you try or convert, making it some kind of weird mix between pickup artists and Jehovahs Witness’. The goal just seems to be muddy pain. The mind boggles.

There are other lesser trials such as changing a tyre or fighting a bear, but those are only really thought of once encountered. You either fight bear or you don’t. As it happens, I have changed a tyre or two in my short life. They should teach this stuff in school. Not putting a condom on a banana. Fat lot of help learning that did…

I think they should have real Trials Of Manhood. Perhaps along the lines of Japanese game shows. Human Tetris, running gauntlets, etcetera. Perhaps get a certificate or something.

Save me having to drink beer…



  1. […] theme day again… Which (between Mark and I) is about as inconsistent as my ability to decipher (on a daily basis) what reality I am […]

  2. Dude, chairman Mao has the answer for you

  3. the thing i like about leather jacket is that they give you the impression that you are a bad ass guy “

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