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WolfDreamer

Wolfen Begins The Hero's Journey

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Toxic masculinity is a phrase with a PR problem. It started as a meme and became a serious topic of discussion. For those not familiar with it, it's far too easy to interpret the phrase as meaning masculinity itself is toxic (and some do seem to use it this way). I think the intent by those who use it thoughtfully is to refer to certain things that society expects of men that are harmful, such as expecting men not to have emotions. I would prefer if another phrase became in vogue to refer to that sort of thing.

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I finally watched the Gillette ad. 

 

Honestly, I was surprised, but not surprised, about all of the people who got upset about it. I agree that Toxic Masculinity exists. But I also agree that most men aren't part of the problem. However, I would challenge them that they also aren't part of the solution.

 

What I saw is a few men in ads showing incorrect behavior. I would probably argue that some of that wasn't necessarily "toxic masculinity", but that can be a discussion for another day. What I overwhelmingly saw is people who sat back and did nothing. They allowed those people who showed incorrect behavior to continue... to make that "toxic masculinity" their voice, because they stayed silent. 

 

I think so many people today, myself included, get upset as being painted by a broad brush because we forget that our actions aren't just what we do, but what we don't do. And what we don't show our children is just as telling as what we do. Sure, Gillette focused on a single subject, but this can be true for so many different issues. 

 

I liked the commercial a lot. It truly made me think about occasions where that overarching message was lost on me. And I wish more people stopped being offended because, "not all are like that" and started showing that the statement is true. 

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5 hours ago, Tanktimus the Encourager said:

Toxic masculinity is a phrase with a PR problem.

 

Agreed. And the damage is done when people use the phrase as an attack on all masculine traits. As you mentioned, the double-standard expectations that certain groups place on men can be damaging. If men are too sensitive, they're sissy boys, but if they're bold and "manly" they're intimidating or thought of as bull-headed. It's like popular culture has limited views of what a man should be, like he should either be sensitive and sweet like someone out of a romance novel or buff and manly and even dangerous... again like someone out of a romance novel.

 

4 hours ago, Sylvaa said:

I think so many people today, myself included, get upset as being painted by a broad brush

 

Yeah, this is part of it. But I also take issue with a company trying to tell men how to behave, when their endgame is to sell more razors. It's a ad, so I'm not offended by it. But I also don't see it as Gillette's place to tell men how to behave because they have no stake in that lesson. And now everyone is talking about their company, and people are buying more razors. Also, some of the scenes are just empty of any sort of realism ("Boys will be boys, boys will be boys, boys will be boys," and the scene when the kids run through the other kid's house and they don't notice) mixed with scenes that the viewer is supposed to take seriously as a lesson on how to be better men. And, is two young boys wrestling considered bad? I always thought of that as a natural part of boyhood. It doesn't look like they were fighting in any serious way, but yet the one dad (among the robotic however many other dads there were) runs up and yanks them apart ("We don't treat each other that way.").

 

It was just poorly done. The message is a good one, but the delivery not so much.

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22 hours ago, Butternut said:

Way late... But thanks man!

 

You're welcome. :)

 

So I am "ashamed" to say that I have been binging Bojack Horseman over the past few days. I had no idea how clever and hilarious this show was. I'm not usually a fan of "adult" animated comedies, but this one is so disarming because one second I'm rolling with laughter and the next I'm thinking, "Damn, that's pretty serious." And then I'm laughing again. 

 

In spite of this recent addiction, my morning routine has been consistent: 0430 wakeup, prayer, push-ups, Daily Dare, WHM breathing, and cold showers. Once my day gets started, though, there isn't time for much of anything except work, and if I'm lucky I get a run in (only one run this week so far). And now it's freaking cold. We're somewhat lucky here in WV compared to further north, but it's still around 13F with windchill around 0F. Tonight and tomorrow it is supposed to be in the single digits with below zero windchill. So probably no running for me today or tomorrow.

 

I also started listening to a new podcast during my commute called Mobituaries, hosted by Mo Rocca, which is basically interesting trivia about lesser-known people who still lived interesting lives or died in interesting ways. The first episode is about JFK impersonator Vaughan Meader, and the second was about TV sitcom deaths and disappearances. I'd never heard of Chuck Cunningham Syndrome until this episode. I mean I knew characters disappeared or died on sitcoms all the time (most famous example from my generation was the little Winslow sister from Family Matters), but I didn't know there was a name for it. Turns out "jumping the shark" wasn't the only TV trope name pulled from Happy Days.

 

I got to stay home today because of the weather. I'm working this evening at the movie theater, though. School is closed again tomorrow, but staff still reports, so I'll be going in, but I will likely have one of my daughters with me.

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Ah, man...

 

 

 

The good news is Michael and Lisa are still going to make music, just not as Gungor. The blog post is worth a read because it reflects not only how changing beliefs and maturity can have an impact on your journey as an artist and as a person but also how popular culture shapes your success as an artist. I love that they freely admit that their journey wasn't always smooth and some fans were isolated by the changes. I've been a fan since the beginning, and I can say that some songs spoke to me, some songs were just okay, some songs confused me, some songs I couldn't get out of my head, and some songs filled me with such emotion that I would have one of those necessary, deep, cleansing cries.

 

For now, I will continue to enjoy The Liturgist Podcast, even if I don't agree with everything, and continue to listen to Gungor's best songs, especially in those moments when I know I need a powerful song. And I await Michael and Lisa's next projects, whatever they may be.

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