Married man vs Bachelor

The fairytale all bachelors THINK they live in

You, my single young stallion friend –  are NOT as “free” as you want the rest of the world to think you are.

Yes, I know you can go out to clubs whenever you want and you have like a hundred names on your phone of girls you want all your buddies to believe you have on speed dial as booty calls.

Yes, I know you have like a thousand xbox games and a fridge full of beer and you and the boys have loud weekend parties at your combined furnished pad which you share with two other single friends.

Together your group is the Mount Everest of singledom. You and your man-pose have it made man. You are the modern hunters of the concrete jungle. If cool could be likened to a movie, you guys would make the Hangover series look like a Tom and Jerry rerun. Except of course the guys in the Hangover actually had careers. And money. And well kitted apartments. And they partied in exotic locations. With hookers. And they’re all actors.

I think your idea of being a single guy out on the prowl every weekend is a lie. Worst of all, it’s a lie you tell yourself and you know it. All your friends know that you’re lying to yourself but they keep quiet about it, because they find your lie rather amusing.

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Reality check boys!

You’re not a hunter. You’re just real easy prey.

Here’s the proof to blow your mind a little:

You and your single buddies hit the club on Friday night.

You go early and make sure you have enough spending cash for drinks and whatever else you need to make it a good night. At the club, you pay an entrance fee. You walk in and head straight to the bar (scanning the area for hotties of course as you do so). At the bar you congregate with other groups of single dudes and start talking about work, and sport and hot girls.

An hour or so later, you and the group move closer to the dancefloor (not to dance – because you haven’t had nearly enough drinks for that) to have a look at some of the girls getting their groove on with their girlfriends.

You recognize one of them and she comes over for the “hello hug” before you offer to buy her a drink. She places her order and like a good boy you run over to the bar and wait in line at the now overcrowded counter. You get the drink and deliver it to said recognized hottie who is now handing out “hello hugs” to the rest of the single guys who also recognized her.

In short. You end up going home alone, a little too drunk to text the girl who gave you her number after the seventh drink you bought her in the hopes of scoring. But you didn’t score. But you have added another number to your phonebook.

She, on the other hand, had a blast with all the free drinks, the attention from at least a handful of guys, good music, great party with her girlfriends and another funny story of “omg did you see how drunk that guy was who kept buying me drinks? Shame, I gave him my domestic worker’s number because he was trying so hard – poor dude. Hahaha.”

When was the last time you went out and had a group of girls buy you drinks the whole night? When was the last time a girl you didn’t know came up to you in a club and said “hey wanna dance?” or “hey my name’s Sally, you have such pretty eyes, can I buy you a drink?”

Exactly.

Why being a married guy kicks ass

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Instead of writing a long and complicated introduction as to why being a married dude rocks, I’ve broken it down into an easily understandable list below:

  1. Boobs. Yip, married guys get to see boobs EVERY day. And we get to see boobs in real life, not just on a mobile phone screen.
  2. Underwear. Married guys have a woman’s underwear in their bedroom every day without even trying.
  3. Hugs and kisses. To a married guy, hugs are not just for “hello” and kisses are not just pecks on the cheek. Oh no. We get those really-tight-up-against-you bear hugs that usually accompany a kiss on the lips. With tongue action.
  4. Exclusivity. Not only do we get to see boobs and underwear and whole bunch of nakedness every day for the rest of our lives….but we are the only ones who will ever see those particular pair of boobies, that sexy underwear set and all that nakedness again. And that, my friend, is a resounding win.
  5. Couples discounts. Many restuarants and spa’s have them. In fact, even retreats and resorts have special couple’s rates which you wouldn’t understand the benefits of if you’re not a couple.
  6. Inside Jokes. I could tell you but….
  7. Permanent conversation. Us married guys get to have conversations about literally anything. All the time. And you wouldn’t believe it, but we get to have discussions about other women that would literally blow your mind!
  8. Next round’s on me. Unlike my single friends, I don’t have to do all the pouring of drinks at a party, and when my wife and I go out to a club or restaurant, I’m not the one who always has to pay for the next round either.
  9. Driving roulette. Married guys don’t have to drive everywhere anymore. Long road trips are way more fun now that I have a driving buddy.
  10. Touch. Us married guys get to touch a woman’s hand, hip, bum, neck, back, hair and even her nose whenever we stretch out our arms. It’s really quite amazing to think that when you’re married just a few months, you’ve already had more physical contact with a member of the opposite sex, than most of your single male friends have had in the past two years.
  11. Showers. I would bet my month’s salary that my shower time beats that of any single guy hands down, every day.
  12. Sexting. Yip, we have that too. Except it’s way more rewarding than when you’re single because guess what? Me, I’m definitely gonna score.
  13. Gym Partners. Not only do I get to go to walk into the gym with a hot woman every day…I get to leave with one wearing yoga pants every day too. And then later…I get to shower with that hot yogi.
  14. A way out. Sorry guys I can’t go to the club to get pissed with the rest of you tonight because my hot, yoga pants-wearing wife and I are doing a Harry Potter marathon with wine and snacks.
  15. Knowledge. Since being married I have gained a lot of inside info on the world of the female which my single buddies will possibly never be privi to. Like for example what girls actually think about the guys in clubs who buy them drinks. 🙂
  16. A girl is wearing my shirt. And it looks so damned sexy when she brings us coffee in the morning wearing my shirt with her hair all frizzy and her makeup faded. Mostly because she is wearing JUST my shirt.

I have about a hundred more reasons that would fill up this list, but I don’t want to completely ruin the rest of your single life all in one foul sweep – afterall you have to figure out the rest of it yourself before your favourite barman resigns.

I’m going to leave you with one last thought. Being married is not a sentence, it is in many ways, the end of one.

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What I would say to the younger me

I read something quite profound today. It was on one of those really stupid e-card things, but for once, instead of inducing an uncontrollable scroll-the-mouse-wheel reflex, this one actually made me think. A little. The card read “ask yourself this: would your younger self like the adult version you’ve become?”

That moment when

Wow. Like the first time you see boobs kinda wow. Or that time you kissed that girl behind the grandstands and walked home smiling all the way – even though you knew you were half an hour late and dad was waiting for you with his belt at the ready. Man, it was worth it, and you’d probably do it again regardless of the outcome. (And I actually did – quite a number of times after that, he he).

I remember the day in the first grade when our teacher, Miss Barnard, asked the class what we would like to be “one day when we grow up”. The boy next to me wanted to be a policeman, the ponytail in the front (goodie two shoes) wanted to be a teacher, of course, and my friend James was aspiring to greatness as a pilot. Me? Well I wanted to be Superman.

The Epiphany

Miss Barnard, James and even Ponytail didn’t get it. But I did. I wanted to be my dad. He was invincible, bulletproof and how the hell did he manage to lift me up just like that – with one arm? He was a werewolf killer, a boogieman hunter, a detective of note and never, ever did he cry. I’m pretty sure he had a blue spandex with a red cape hidden in some secret superhero cupboard somewhere. (My sister and I will probably find out one day.)

He’s in his sixties now, and he still has his powers – although I’m convinced he only uses them now when it’s absolutely necessary. The point is, he’s still tough as nails. I recon life made him this way because it was an easier task than trying to get him to quit. He is a man who has had his back up against the wall many times, and never backed down – instead he pushed back harder. “They can kill me, but they can’t eat me,” he always says. I believe that to this day.

So would I like myself?

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The present day me.

Actually, yeah, I kinda think I would. At least I hope I would (if not, I could probably give the younger me a wedgie until he did. Or I did.) But the older me hasn’t done too badly really. Sure, I’ve made mistakes and Ive hurt people along the way, but it was never intentional and there are times I wish I could go back and prevent those happenings. But generally speaking, I kinda think Ive done alright.

I’ve traveled the world without any money, played in a real life rock band, lived in more places than I remember – mostly because I was fresh outta cash and couldn’t pay the rent, partied till the sun came up and even, almost, got hitched. It was tough, but I survived.

I have two beautiful, healthy kids whom I’m trying to raise by myself and I am fortunate to have friends and family helping out with that. Went through a terrible break up, lost my job and had to sell everything I owned a few times over to make ends meet – but I survived.

I’ve had my car repossessed, walked my son to school for three months during the winter until I eventually managed the cash to buy an old ’84 Honda which took another two months to get running. I lost some weight during that time, but I survived. During this time my daughter was born. I was forced to work three jobs to make ends meet. But I survived.

It has been little over a year now that I’ve been unemployed in an effort to follow my dream of owning my own magazine. I sold every little piece of furniture I owned to pay the rent – again. Lost the apartment I stayed in because, well there was that little cash issue. Many told me to go get a job in the months that I couldn’t pay my rent or even put petrol in my car. I refused. Three months ago the first edition of my magazine – The Planner’s Notebook – hit the shelves. The second edition is printing in three weeks by the way. So far, I’ve survived.

Even Superman has a weakness

Mine is love. It is the one area I seem to keep screwing up. And again, this is not because I want to screw up, but rather I obviously don’t get “the game”. Or I do, but I’m over it. This “game” is starting to become more and more appealing to the spectator in me. I could rant on about this, but I won’t – this blog is already way passed the attention span limit of most readers. I will say though that the further you keep away from your own kryptonite, the safer you will be.

So what’s the point?

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The younger me.

My point is that I probably wouldn’t like myself as an adult. But more importantly I wouldn’t care about the opinions of that younger me. In retrospect I probably wouldn’t like the younger me. In fact, if I could travel back a few years and meet the younger me, there is something I would say to him. He wouldn’t get it until now. “Pussy”.

Mozart and the Mosh Pit

“Music soothes even the savage beast”. Another perfect example of how misguided our education system is. Although this is possibly one of my favourite quotes, it is also one of the most misquoted.

It was the other William

Many believe that it was uttered by the Master Word Smith, William Shakespeare, when in fact it was from a play entitled The Mourning Bride written in 1697 by the English playwright, William Congreve.

William Congreve

William Congreve

The actual line reads “Music has charms to soothe a savage breast,” which is the first line of the play, spoken by Almeria in Act I, Scene 1. (The word “breast” is often misquoted as “beast”, and “has” sometimes appears as “hath”.)

As a quick point of interest, this guy was really done in by history as another famous quote was also attributed to Shakespeare – “Heaven has no rage like love to hatred turned, Nor hell a fury like a woman scorned,” spoken by Zara in Act III, Scene VIII. (This is usually paraphrased as “Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned”).

But anyway…

It’s a scientifically proven fact that music affects our brains. And different music affects different areas of our brains depending on a lot of things, including whether we are actual musicians or not. One thing i for sure though: we learn quicker when things rhyme. Case in point is the ABC song we were taught as kids. Why this is an affective learning tool boils down to how our brains process information.

When it comes to music

One side of our brain processes the words while the other processes the music. This activates the entire brain and ensures far better retention of information. Our short term memory can only hold seven bits of information, and by combining information into a song, you are effectively taking two or three bits and making them one. This means you can actually force feed your brain through music. Surprisingly though, the sound of music has more impact on us than the actual lyrics, which is comforting to me personally as a parent considering the amount crap the modern rappers and pop groups “sing” about.

courtesy of Huffington Post.

courtesy of Huffington Post.

It is also important that you stimulate your brain with the right type of music. And by that I don’t mean doing the world a favour and never using the words “talented musician” in the same sentence as Justin Bieber or Miley Cyrus ever again. I mean that you need to listen to complex music if you are going to get your noggin vibrating sufficiently.

Like for example

It’s been accepted for a while now that to ensure your child’s brain gets stimulated properly, one should play classical music to them while in the womb and after birth. You know, classical, like Mozart or Hendel or Bach – real instruments and composers and stuff (for the kids reading…wait…oh well). But is it only classical music that has this affect, and if so why?

The Mozart Effect

Like “Crossfit” and other buzzwords being thrown around by people wanting to sound cool, this term is really misunderstood. It plays on the premise that listening to classical music makes your child smarter…much like how doing burpees and chin ups till you puke makes you stronger. So what’s behind this popular notion, what does it really mean and is it all hype or does it carry some weight…relax Crossfitians, we don’t care about your PB.

Basically in layman’s terms the reason the classical stuff works on your brain is because of all the different pitches and hundreds of different notes all clustered together making pretty sounds that get your neurons firing like the lights on your Christmas tree. The key being the combination of many different notes in highs and lows in short, dramatic bursts…like…a…really good…guitar solo…in a hard rock or metal song.

Meet the Slipknot offenders.

Meet the Slipknot offenders.

Before we continue…

I feel it is my duty as a musician and music enthusiast to set the record straight. Metallica is not metal. Seether is not metal. Disturbed is not metal. Linkin Park is not metal. Chad Koeger and Nickleback are neither metal nor rock musicians…in fact they are almost country rockers…like Crossfitians are exercisers, not athletes.

Alright so what I’m saying is…

Some clever people in white coats have found that classical, jazz and metal music have similar affects on the brain because of the dramatic time signatures and changes in the patterns and progressions of the various musical pieces. It also dictates that the brain is more stimulated by technically difficult to play pieces of music than repetitive melodies such as loop-tracks used in today’s rap and hip-hop genres.

Many argue that heavy metal is negative and causes rebellion in children. “Just look at those boys who killed all those kids at that school because they listened to Slipknot”. Really. Blaming music on school killings or teen suicide is like blaming spoons for fat people being fat.

We can experience music as something sorrowful, distressing, forceful, or aggressive, all in the comfort of our own home without feeling a shred of any real threat or danger. In the same way we look at art and perceive the emotion, we can understand the emotion of the music without really feeling it ourselves.

There is the fear of course that in the same way listening to cheerful music can lift one’s spirits, listening to angry music can actually make you angry enough to pick up a gun and start killing bunnies. Paradoxically, people often tailor music to their current mood, rather than use music to try and change their mood. Also…does listening to sexy music make you wanna hump your sister? Thought not. So drop it.

In closing (Phew)

To date, there are many theories on whether or not music makes your child smarter. Some believe they have found concrete evidence to validate this. They’re lying and want to sound cooler than their white coats and thick glasses make them look.

The reality is a report by McMaster University Department of Psychology, Neuroscience & Behaviour in Hamilton, Canada which states that “The opposing sounds of Mozart and Slayer are presented but their difference not explained…at the sensory-cellular level there is no difference.”

Because we are all different,some people are drawn to heavy metal music for it’s perceived sonic qualities which means that this music is not making anyone more aggressive or violent than they already are.

Yes, really.

Do you agree? Tell us what you think. Join in the poll, it’s fun and you’ll get that great satisfaction of knowing you upset someone.

 

How beautiful can atrocious be?

The old adage “beauty is in the eye of the beholder” is a load of rubbish in my opinion. That’s just the apologetic way of blame shifting. Its a very clever way of escaping the fact that your scribbled little lines with a blotch of paint here and there on an over-sized canvas is not, in fact, pretty. Nor is it art. And you are sadly not a tormented creative soul. Its ugly, it doesn’t say anything and its only function should be convincing you that rugby or some other activity would be better suited to your unique set of skills.

You feel me?

I don’t believe beauty is something you see. I believe it is something you experience. It is a something that leaves you with a feeling rather than an image of it. Therefor I state that “beauty is in the heart of the beholder”.

To illustrate.

Your son draws you a picture. It’s something resembling a man and a sun with a carrot sticking out his ass. It’s ugly. But he hands it to you and proudly explains what each of the scribbles are and how they fit together to form the image of you in his world. Suddenly you get that lump in the throat experience. You look at this ugly thing on this crumpled sheet of A4 paper and it becomes the most beautiful thing anyone has ever handed you. Suddenly the carrot-assed-sun-man takes on a profoundly new meaning, he becomes a portrait of a golden god worthy to be framed and displayed in the lounge on that wall next to surround sound a little off center from the family portrait. See?

Atrocious

Man I love this word. It even looks really cool when you read it on the screen, especially when you use some medieval looking font or something. And it sounds regal, upper class even when pronounced properly. (Have you ever experienced atrocious as it passes over the lips of a beautiful woman? You should, it’s life altering really.)

Anyway, so what makes it pretty? I think it could be the different sounds you make at once when you pronounce it. Or, it could be the shape your mouth takes or the tone your voice changes to? I don’t know. But what I do know for certain is that the meaning of the word is far from pretty. According to Oxford “atrocious” is an adjective meaning horrifyingly wicked. But it doesn’t feel wicked, does it? So I would go as far as saying that “beautiful” could be synonymous with “atrocious” which goes without saying that beauty is indeed atrocious. An atrocity really.

So to summarize I have included this little poll as a test to my theory. Take part and make your little tick because I know that you are as curious of the outcome as I am.

 

Let me know, and follow me on Facebook, like this page and enjoy the different angles on life, love and everything in between.

And, yes, really.

 

Bird Watching Mystic steals credit for coffee discovery

So why is it that everything we don’t understand or everything we don’t really know much about was always either discovered by, or perfected by, or handed to some mystic medicine man or tribal healer somewhere in some later part of some earlier century? Case in point… Coffee.

Some Bird Watching Dude

And I quote the omnipotent Wikipedia “there are several legendary accounts of the origin of the drink itself. One account involves the Yemenite Sufi mystic Ghothul Akbar Nooruddin Abu al-Hasan al-Shadhili.[5] When traveling in Ethiopia, the legend goes, he observed birds of unusual vitality, and, upon trying the berries that the birds had been eating, experienced the same vitality.”

Okay so the guy saw birds. But these birds looked younger than their buddies (which were obviously all the same age judging by whatever one judges avian ages by) and so it occurred to him that it must be the berries they were eating. It couldn’t have been that they were just younger birds. Oh no. It HAD to be the berries. So I wonder what happened then? Because I KNOW this guy would’ve hurled those magic berries right out had he just picked a handful and shoveled them into his mystic Yemenite mouth. The other, dare I say more believable story attributes the discovery to this guy’s disciple… or appy.

Okay so maybe it was the appy

And I consult the oracle once again on this.

“According to the ancient chronicle (preserved in the Abd-Al-Kadir manuscript), Omar, who was known for his ability to cure the sick through prayer, was once exiled from Mocha to a desert cave near Ousab. Starving, Omar chewed berries from nearby shrubbery, but found them to be bitter. He tried roasting the beans to improve the flavor, but they became hard. He then tried boiling them to soften the bean, which resulted in a fragrant brown liquid. Upon drinking the liquid Omar was revitalized and sustained for days. As stories of this “miracle drug” reached Mocha, Omar was asked to return and was made a saint.”

Believe it dammit

Sounds a lot more believable doesn’t it? But the real problem here is the fact that we all just accept whatever is written on wikipedia as gospel. On that note we all just accept that whatever has been written in a gospel is also truth, but that has nothing to do with coffee, or historical truth, so let’s stay focused for a second.

What if the most believable origin of coffee was actually a lot less believable? What if coffee was actually only invented in the time of our grandparents. And that we are only told lies like these “origin tales” to keep us from seeing that the world is only as old as what we are. If you think about it, everything that exists around you really is only as old as what you are and that when you die, everything else dies as well. How would know if this weren’t the case?

In fact, how would you know that when you die you actually immediately start living your current life again and that you don’t remember it because of the whole dying and being reborn thing? If this were true you could argue that there really aren’t 7 billion people in the world. What happens if you are just a repeat of you? That would explain why some people experience deja vu, or why some people are better at math than others.

This could explain a lot of things, but what it won’t do is provide us with a distinct answer to the coffee conundrum. All it does is enforce the belief that there can never be too much coffee. And there can never be too much time.

 

So if right is to left then…

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Chess. It’s said to be one of the oldest forms of entertainment in the history of the human race. Or at least the story goes that it was actually not a game at all and it started as a way for generals to strategically plan their campaigns.

Life. It’s said to be even older than the game of chess. So why is it that not one human being has successfully mastered it? Could it be because life is so short that by the time we get to mastering it, it’s over? Is it too short then? How can we say that life is too short when it really is the longest thing we will ever experience? Or is it? Maybe Experience is the longest thing we’ll ever…experience? Or maybe we are just that, an experience. Maybe we are a part of something that is using each one of us a separate experience? Like maybe God. Or at least what we perceive a god to be. Maybe “god” is a collective noun for experience? Maybe collective is a verb?

So then does that mean that chess is really more than just a game? Perhaps a game is more than just chess and perhaps the idea of pitting oneself against another over a few pieces on a board is a way of testing your own experience against that of another version of yourself?

That would explain anticipation. Or would it? If we are all connected through the same subconscious does that mean we are all really good chess players? Or really good at avoiding asking questions about life because thinking is an experience most have never experienced to begin with? Like love for example. Perhaps love is a game too. And perhaps in this game nobody really plays but everybody kinda wins somewhere along the line. Even spectators win as watching two people in love can be rather entertaining. Unlike watching two people play chess, which is kinda boring, except for the opponents who excitedly watch for the next move?

So then maybe this collective noun verb thing has two sides to it’s… umm, brain. A left and a right. Much like ours. Which explains why you have creative people and analytical folk. Some can play chess and others can’t. The left brain people might just be the left brain of god and so too the right brain people. But if that is true then it brings us right back to love. What happens when a lefty and a “righty” decide to play THAT game? Do they form an ambidextrous union then? And which will be more dominant? More importantly which one plays white?

So despite all of these questions that will inevitably remain unanswered I have a theory. It’s simple really. Life is a game of chess played between two sides of a godly brain struggling to come to terms with its own existence on a board of life with pieces carved from love.

Yes, really.