Real Masculinity According To Me

“The hands of a brick layer, the mind of a scientist,  the heart of a poet.” 

Epitaph of  Saumel J Kirkwood  former Governor of Iowa, and what I’m thinking of carving on my tombstone 😉 DM

kirkwood-hammer certificae

I’m probably going to step on a few toes with this one, but you know what,  I’m not going to lose any sleep over it.

When I was a young man, there were very few healthy masculine role models as I recall.  The majority of men were either stoic males who suppressed their  emotion, or jocks whose sole purpose in life was to “get some”, great qualities to have in a future husband don’t you think?

I believe a real man can be tough and know how to stand his ground, but who also know how to admit when he’s wrong. (humble)  Real men  are in touch with their feelings, regardless of what anybody else may be telling you.

Since my years in High School,  I’ve been married for 35 years  to the  same woman, (and we still like each other). We’ve raised 4 children now in their mid 20’s to early 30’s, and  have  a healthy  relationship with each of them.

In addition to  teaching, I’m a general contractor.

I am a people person, and have known and worked alongside  dozens of men (and women) in the construction industry with every personality type you could imagine. In all these years, the one I had the most friction with was a  former bible college graduate twerp with a mouth.

I love pouring cement, stick framing a roof, riding motorcycles, writing poetry, baking my grandma’s rye bread from scratch, shooting a semi automatic rifle,  working in our  apple orchard, stacking bales in the haymow, butchering chickens, and bringing my wife coffee in bed.

I love working with the biker/just got out of jail types.

I love to look them in the eye and mess with their minds.

Six years ago, I spent the day with Johnny.  He was helping a friend of mine remodel a building.  Johnny was on work release, muscular, in his mid 30’s.  I came with my sawzall,  chop saw and diamond blade.  My job was to cut a doorway into the side of the masonry building 2 stories in the air.

I looked Johnny in the eye and said,   ‘”I’m afraid of heights.”  (because I am) 🙂

He looked @ me and sarcastically said, “Man, what kind of carpenter are you,  afraid of height?”

About 1/3 of the way into the process, there was an accident. Johnny, accidentally stabbed me with my sawzall.

New blade, with pigeon dung on it. Blade slid  into my forearm like a steak knife.   Two hours later, after a trip to the emergency room, we were back.  My forearm, with 7 stitches  was all wrap up.  I couldn’t leave because I had brought  the tools and know how.  I watched Johnny struggle for 5 minutes  with my chop saw. It was driving me nuts.

Finally, I said, “Let me have it.”

I grabbed the saw with both hands and went back to work.  Two hours later, we were done.

Johnny, looked @ me when I finished with the saw  and said, “Man, you are one bad @#s .”

Music to my ears.


12 thoughts on “Real Masculinity According To Me

    • thank you Susan! That is one of the things I have enjoyed about meeting some of you blogging, it gives me a glimpse into other people’s lives in a way I’d never experienced before. DM

      Liked by 1 person

    • it was a freak accident for sure. It wasn’t running when it went in..he was dangling it b the chord, I was on the level below him , and it just slipped into my forearm like a surgeon’s knife. I didn’t believe it @ first, neither did he 🙂
      Sorry if I grossed you out.


    • There is something rare and refreshing (for me) to read about a man who is both warrior and a poet.both tough and tender…again that’s just me, but my sense is, most people have both, but our culture teaches young boys to be macho and set aside a part of their personality, or some form of suppression. The human personality is a lot more varied and complex than pop culture would have us believe.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. I’ve read about four of your posts, so far, and thought about slipping in a comment more than once – but I really need to know about this… How’s that arm healing up? If you’re having any trouble with infection, try slapping some (pure, local, raw) honey on when you change the dressings. Because it’s hydrophilic (attracts moisture) honey is anti fungal, germicidal, etc, etc; amazing for cuts, burns or any kind of wound healing: )
    Best regards, Deb (the beekeeper’s daughter; )

    Liked by 1 person

    • thanks for checking on me Deb. Wound is completely healed. The incident actually happened a few years ago. I’ve read about the healing properties about honey before but have never tried it. Next time I will try to remember. I’m all about old school 😉 DM


      • I’d heard it before too; lots of times – from the time I was an eye-rolling teen (that’s how old I was when we acquired the bees; ) but I never really put it to use; until, that is, I suddenly became the beekeeper and you just don’t have time to pay attention to the slivers, cuts, wire punctures and burns from sizzling hot wax and honey; acquired while extracting the incoming crop… And I know that I had done all of those things to myself; but, by the time extraction was done, everything was either already healed, or well on its way; just because I’d literally been immersed for days in raw honey: ). Needless to say, I’ve used it purposefully ever since (and it still never ceases to amaze me; )

        Liked by 1 person

  2. I can’t tell you the number of people who have suggested I get into bees (we have a 100 tree apple orchard,and I have multiple interests besides) I just know @ this point, I don’t have time to do it justice….


    • Lol, it’s a lot of work, that’s for sure! But there are lots of beekeepers who could put a few hives in to pollinate while you’re in bloom…


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