Tag Archives: man

Today’s Word is… HUSKY

[Editor’s Note: So I got a reader email, cool dude. He wanted to see how the weight loss journey was going *hands mic (unlike the ball) to Marshawn* “Thanks for Asking”. He also asked about dating as a heavier dude, the thin line between “accept me at my worst” and “put your best foot forward”. He felt like he should hold off until he felt a little more comfortable with himself physically. Personally, I don’t see why one can’t do both. Anyway, after the exchange it made me think of this old post I never posted as a follow up to “BIG”, about the dating world through the lens of a big dude. Rereading it I liked it more than I did when I wrote it so here goes nothing]

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By and large, body image issues in general are more attributed to women than men.  Men have pursuer privilege (Did I write about this, I couldn’t find a link *shrug*).  Socially, its more common for us to go to the gym, run ball with the homies every week, move the furniture. Overall, men are expected just exude confidence whether you’re built like LeBron James or CC Sabathia.  If male physique is brought up critically, more commonly it’s about some guy who needs to bulk up. There isn’t no Sticks gym for the thin guy (maybe there should be *drafts a business plan*) Anyway, Poor Snoop Khalifas, this post aint about y’all either. I don’t know that life.  For most of my life I’ve always been a bigger dude.  Some times way bigger than others but much like my pops, I’m solid and broad.  Don’t wear skinny jeans cuz my quads don’t fit.  I’m more confident in my 20s then maybe my later teens, rolling my eyes as every Tom, Dick and Harry called me “Big Man”, “Big Guy”, being compared to every big black dude on TV (poor little black boys probably being called Terio now, hold ya head lil homies), and when it came to dating, the deck is always stacked against me to make up in charm what I’m lacking in physical appearance.  It’s not exactly the same plight of the big girl, but it isn’t that easy, and I’m actually handsome. (Yeah I’m tired of being humble in 2015).  I approach who I’m attracted to, it either works or it doesn’t, take the curves and go home (double #auntandre). But it took me a while to get to that point, before then it was a struggle.

It was bad enough that I was already an introvert; wary of being bothersome to others. So I did plenty of women the courtesy of not having to awkwardly rejecting me by counting myself out. I barely found myself attractive, of course she didn’t. When I did find myself talking to a woman I addressed the elephant in the room, that was me, large being with a long trunk (dry, self effacing humor….kinda my schtick then). It was somewhat twisted, the confidence I gained by laughing at myself before someone else could. Some women actually found it endearing, but then came another can of worms that was dating someone “out of my league”. Always the self aware, I worried more about how her stock fell being associated with someone like me. Was I “but he has a great personality” guy? Did she like me as is, or tolerated it for now? I would become insecure and paranoid, and suddenly I wasn’t the silly, sweet guy that got her in the first place. When the flame extinguished, I had no one to blame but myself.

Then well….you can see in very early posts here, I struggled with being the “safe” guy until I finally decided to really do something with my weight yada yada yada, I still get played. Because now I’m too much of a flirt and getting big headed. See, now ain’t that a bitch. The moral of the story being, every man takes a loss here and there, big, small, short and tall. Attraction is relative and I’ll never be everyone’s cup of tea (maybe if I’m famous). You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take so stay low and keep firing. Never know who gon do like Short said and let Bruce Bruce hit it.

-Stan-

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Today’s Word is… TRADITIONAL

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Gender roles is touchy because no one likes being told what they should and shouldn’t be.  Only thing that defines your gender is the restroom you use, this Merica n shit.  I do find it interesting the “evolution” you can say of men.  Just yesterday, I’m watching the game and I’m browsing on twitter and see a man fighting for his right to wear leggings.  I go on Facebook, I see my boy posting a picture of his outfit of the day, while my female cousin is rooting for her team.  Nothing wrong with that necessarily, but interesting.  Scroll further, I see another guy venting his frustrations about a relationship gone bad, another girl posts a picture of Nia Long and how she’d totally go gay for her.  Nothing wrong (especially since Nia Long is perfect) but still…interesting.

Its a sign of the times really, gender roles are just not traditional.  The modern woman is a renaissance woman, she doesn’t necessarily need a man for anything but to get her shots off and even that is debateable (sidebar yeah yeah open sexuality but it wasn’t until blogging/social media did I see how common it was for women to talk about their fap life online, but hey do y’all…some pun intended.). With the modern woman bringing home the bacon, frying it and making themselves a club sammich where does the modern man fit in?  The modern man, well he’s adapting.  We cook, we clean, we shop.  I’ve gone to grocery stores, laundrymats and seen husbands completely lost as their wives usually do it for them, must be nice. 

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I grew up with both dynamics, a father who worked so my mother didn’t have to and later my mother proved more than capable of doing it as a divorced single mother.  I’d consider myself more traditional, I hope to be the provider, the pickle jar opener, the tire changer.  The only problem is the other traditionalists ruined it for everyone.  The extreme traditionalists No Ma’am negroes and June Cleavages of the world who look at everything strictly by gender, I’m a man you obey me,  I’m a woman take care of me.  I can’t go for that, word to Hall and Oates.

You see these people all over the internet, women demanding what a man should make, and men shaming women for aspiring to be anything but a wife and mother.  They lack accountability, while I plan to be the leader of my family that’s because I’ve shown myself capable, respect and deferment are not assumed traits, they’re earned. Some think they can take the easy way out, assume another race is easier or put on a cape and save someone who has nothing but you.  As for the women, most men appreciate someone who has their own shit, just know its a complement not a replacement.  Tell me you don’t need me I’ll go and let you prove your theory.

Times have changed, the modern man is more than capable of being self sufficient, as is the modern woman.  I don’t need a woman to get in the kitchen and fix me something to eat, but I’d like to have one.  Women don’t need me to provide for them but most wouldn’t mind being a housewife.  The traditional household is not a relic yet, and there’s nothing wrong with coveting one.  Unless of course there’s some rich woman who willing to take care of my ass, I gets busy in the kitchen.

-Stan

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Today’s Word is… INTIMACY

*Blows dust off keyboard*

You ever just wonder what your ultimate legacy to someone is now? You break up, fall out and now you’re forever a memory, a part of their narrative, a part of their story. In 25 years I’ve met my fair share of women, now am I just a sweet guy it didn’t work out with or a narcissistic asshole. Am I even remembered at all? The things I shared with them, are they still locked away or am I now the butt of insider jokes with their homegirls. Perhaps I just over think about things. I’ve had my struggles with intimacy, feeling emotional closeness and connection with another person. Being vulnerable, open, unbridled…it didn’t come easy for me, as it doesn’t for most men. We’re taught from an early age to be competitive, that feelings are a sign of weakness and to avoid vulnerability and dependency at all costs. Women are much more intimate, well open to the possibility but when things get too real they too will shut all the way down, I just learned that the hard way. Anyway doe, why is intimacy so hard to achieve from either side, if you can’t trust them shouldn’t you be able to trust your own instincts? If you can’t trust those…then well, why not?

Well for one thing in this new era of #wecare, people are way too public about everything. This is the age of screenshotting messages, posting personal photos and if you had a bad breakup, a well executed rant has viral potential. Even as I clear my phones of contacts, messages, pictures today, it would never cross my mind to “leak” things sent to me in confidence regardless of how hurt I felt or how many subliminal messages they post. It’s hard to build intimacy when most people will betray you for a 15 minutes of internet fame. Then of course, there’s the bad history. You’ve tried to open up to someone to no avail or they simply wouldn’t open up to you and you’ve accepted it as the way it goes. You then settle on physical intimacy which is much easier to achieve. You kiss, hug, penetrate like you actually give a damn about them but then immediately after release you want to shove them off you and ask what they about to get into…not that I would…ever…do…let’s move on.

As I said I’ve had my struggles with intimacy, moreso because I found myself being the rock, but when it came down to my own needs she wasn’t there. When a man starts to look elsewhere for intimacy, well, you end up Gabrielle Unioned. I can say most men want someone they can be intimate with, which is why that old college girlfriend, or “best friend” never goes anywhere even if it’s not physical. They just want someone they can be honest with, who’s present, who they can trust, who respects their opinion, and appreciates them. In a perfect world, that person is their wife or girlfriend, in reality it’s their homegirl or they mama until someone else is ready to take that torch.

We all require intimacy in order to thrive. When we make the effort to give attention to intimacy, it’s not only our relationships that benefit but our lives in general. And as a result, so do the lives of all of the others with whom we engage. It’s a ripple effect, shut out people shut out people, intimate people are intimate to others. I’d like to think that most people I’ve encountered are more confident and trusting because I’ve always tried to be there for them. Or maybe I wasn’t, and now they can never trust anyone cuz of me, in that case, uh ooooooooh it aint my fault *Mystikal voice* (is he still out btw?)

-Stan-

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Today’s Word is… POPS

So I’m randomly chatting to this woman, cute smile, sense of humor, whathaveyou. We’re give brief bios when she mentions she has kids and waited for the look of defeat in my eyes.  I proceeded to make normal conversation, much to her surprise.  She thinks maybe I misheard her, so she attacks from a new angle explaining how hard it is to date as a parent and went on saying things you really don’t say to a guy you just met.  Going back to the parenting/dating conundrum, she said she struggles to meet guys who can get past her children, I countered she seems to place them in the way.  I went on to say that there’s two sides to a mother, the parent and the woman, and sometimes she and suitors never focus on the woman.  And like that shields was down, but that’s a different post entirely. 

Anywho, I was reading another blog on what makes a good father. Now I have no lil Stans running around so I couldn’t relate on that level, so I thought what makes my father a good father.  I couldn’t help but think about that conversation with the woman before and my theory on the two sides of a parent.  If you’ve read long enough you’d know my relationship with my father is unique, he was always  provider, care taker and disciplinarian but as a man, I hardly knew ye.  I know I can call him for anything, I know he proudly served his country and worked to give me everything I covet. But his favorite color? I don’t know…blue?  Actually I think it is blue.  Whatever.

What I did learn about him, came from my mother and loose lipped relatives.  My father was the king of compartmentalization.  He never let us see his struggles as a man.  He quit drinking and smoking shortly after I was born. He’ll play 5 basketball games in a row and never let me know he’s sore (though I would be dude plays defense like a Bad Boy Piston). He’s not rich but you could never say he was broke. It goes without saying he wasn’t perfect, but he’d be damned to let me or any of my siblings know his flaws.  He was Superman.  

These days he’s hung up his cape, and it’s still awkward to see him as Clark Kent.  Instead of telling what’s what, he just gives his perspective and leaves it to our own interpretation.  Talks went from “wear a condom” to “are you sure you’re in love with this woman”.  I never heard him complain about work, I never heard him gush over my brother’s mother the way he does his new fiancee.  Perhaps, it simply takes a man to know a man. 

It makes sense now, but it hadn’t always.  My sisters were spoiled, my older brothers were equals, my little brothers were babies, I was just….me.  I saw our relationship for what it wasn’t rather than what it was.  As gifted as I was I was still a child, and a child was kept in a child’s place.  Could he had did some things differently? Of course. Could I had made life easier? Indeed. With that understanding and the lessons learned, we’re able to move forward in the next phase of the father/son dynamic. So this Father’s Day especially I take time to reflect on the father I have and the father I hope to be one day, Superman with a bit more tact, the great parent and just as great man.

Happy Father’s Day.

-Stan-

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Today’s Word is… MOTIVATION

Haven’t did a diet/fitness post in a while, primarily because there’s nothing new to report and I might’ve gained a few pounds….a couple times.  I’m getting my act together, slowly which is much harder to do in the summer.  It was this time last year when I started to take the foot off the gas, I had lost 50 lbs in 4 months, you couldn’t tell me ish.  Fall rolled around and I pulled through, holidays was the worst days, I was sipping egg nog when I was thirstay.  Spring was just…and now I’m here.  The final 25 ish lbs is now a steeper 40, the issue: Summer is the worst the to get motivated.

It’s too hot to do anything some days, ain’t nobody got time to be cooking, cookout season, pretty ladies everywhere you just want to get fly and be out.  But no, I may not be excused.  Well over a year into this I thought I’d be done, or been quit and just found a woman with a penchant for teddy bear brothas and my blog would be about the transition marriage, kids and sh t.   But here I am, on another muhfuggin nutrition and exercise guide because you know, I’m not a dieter, I just dont eat a lot.  The Manly Man guide, Thinsgiving and the What Would Jigga Do plans worked out pretty well for myself and others who played along, this one will be I don’t know I got nothing….maybe I will think of something and this sentence never happened, if you can read this then I failed. Welp.

1) Water man, water man, water man, water mighty good man- I honestly been slacking on my water, went from 15 cups daily to chugging down a bottle just to make 8.  Personally, I just hate having to use the bathroom every 25 seconds especially at work.  Summer makes this a bit easier as it’s hot as hell and I’m not likely to drink anything else. 

2) Get me on the court and I’m trouble- How can you get a triple double in a pick up game, what the hell was they playing to? 50?  Anyway, while I’m not the biggest fan of the gym in the summer (i still go because strength training is still important), nothing beats a jog or running some ball while the sun goes down and mosquitoes chill….slightly. 

3) Flex In the Kitchen- The kitchen isnt just for women who says Koby is in the Super Bowl to get some attention on Twitter.  Take full control of what you’re eating, make it yourself.  Basically avoid take out at all costs, when it is too hot to cook, but there’s always sammiches. With no mayo, it’s gross.  Just thought I

4) Can’t see it coming down my eyes, so i gotta make this log cry- I used to log everything I was eating, then i started doing it mentally, then I stopped caring.  Its a tedious task, but in an era people take pics of their food before they bless it, why not just log it and hold yourself accountable. 

5)”Eat clean” – Michael Douglas- You know the usual sneak a veggie in each meal, yogurt for breffis, all that good stuff there’s a million blogs and articles on

This time last year, I was sure by August I was gonna be walking around with no shirt cuz i don’t give a fuh bout my haters long as my beaches love me.  It ain’t quite work out that way, we’ll see what happens when August 2013 comes around, quick math says 16 lbs @ 2 lbs a week, which would bring me…..exactly where I was in August 2012..D’oh.

-Stan-

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Today’s Word is… MAN

“I need a man, not a boy” – probably 83% of all hetero women dating profiles.

I remember one day I was talking to “Miss” and I jokingly said I was going to write a relationship book titled “You’re Doing too Much”. (Actually just might one day, my before im 30 bucket list has “publish writing” on it, it’s either that or a novel, I mean E.L. James isn’t too great a writer and she’s doing quite well #noshade #nopunintended #imgoingtofeelthewrathofGreyGroupieslater #imrambling). The idea of the book was simple, relationship advice book for people who are too reliant on relationship advice.  Most bloggers/matchmakers/divorced comedians are really just feeding out generalizations that seldom apply to everyone, but sounds sensible enough you just accept it, like Omarion’s singing ability.  *re-reads paragraph, turns down ether levels*

coming soon…maybe.

So alas here is the kinda sorta sneak preview to my non existing as yet to be titled copyright pending book, chapter I: Let Men be Men

He sees you, he is attracted.  You see him, the same.  He approaches you starts up conversation (oh yeah it’s 2012..) he messages you on Facebook as you two talk about what your interests are, who you be with, things that make you smile, what numbers to dial.  You go on a couple dates, you like him he likes you, you two decide to be in an exclusive relationship.  Now in the relationship, you’re unhappy.  He rather play Madden than go to the mall with you to pick out an outfit for a party he also elects not to go to.  You force him to watch reality TV but now feel uncomfortable because he’s checking out every chick on the screen.   He turns it to ESPN, you roll your eyes. He loses his job, you make more than enough to support the two of you until he gets back on his feet.  One day you ask him to make dinner and come home to fried chicken no vegetables or anything just chicken.  You don’t want chicken you rather go out for dinner/drinks now; you put on a dress, he throws on his McDowell’s t-shirt and a fitted. You hate that shirt because it’s so awesome random people always stop and inquire about it.  As expected, cute waitress compliments awesome shirt, you brazenly pick up check in attempt to emasculate him. You even elect to drive home since you took your car. He rolls eyes and uses his phone during ride, you notice he’s way too happy after you just defeated him.  You start to wonder what he’s up to when you’re not around. You start feeling insecure.  Now you’re on all you’re favorite blogs looking for signs he might have a sideline chick.  You start having trust issues and accusing him of things, he can’t take it anymore, ends relationship.  He now only hits you up to “chill”.  You’re on social networks talking about how all men are the same.

No, that wasn’t meant to be read in the DirecTV commercial voice. Yes, that was based on a true story. So what’s the moral here, to let a man be a man.  Men are far from perfect, the guy in the story certainly.  However, men command respect.  Respect their time, respect their space, respect their role in the relationship, respect their judgement.  If a man rather watch mid-season baseball than go to the town parade let him be.  If a man is accidentally logged on Facebook that doesn’t mean read his messages. Support and encourage him but understand you can’t “train” a man, only dragons. The judgement is truly underrated, men are not sex crazed idiots completely weak to another’s advances.  I love women I couldn’t imagine going a day without seeing one whether its a boo or a stranger, however I’m a man of commitment; when I make one, I stand by it. Also insecurity stems from within, it comes from even subconsciously knowing that you are not on your job….actually that might be another post entirely (and yes for those keeping score that’s 3 posts I have to do….eventually).  To be honest, it doesn’t take much to keep a man happy, most relationships fail because of timing and misplaced expectations.

Train dragons, not men

-Stan-

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