Thursday, February 16, 2006

A Man's Man

One of the perks of my shitty job at the gift shop (if you can actually call it a perk) is that I spend the vast majority of my time alone ..... and when the hotel is empty, it is painfully slow. I was perusing some magazines and came across an article in Men's Health.

I'm not one of those guys usually up for reading a magazine that always has some male actor 1/2 way in the buff flexing his $200 an hour personal trainer induced pecs. But it was either this or Cosmopolitan with Hilary Duff on the cover (how unsexy is that?). Anyways, this issue had the requisite male celeb on the cover. This time it was Jason Statham who I have to say is one cool mofo though.

Anyways, there was an article on Ernest Hemingway in it. What a tragic and amazing person. He was definitely a larger than life character, the sort of man who had monumental flaws and lived life with a zeal and gusto few of us have the nerve to even imagine.

He was an ambulance driver during the First World War, a reporter during the Spanish Civil War, and of course, a great novelist. He ran with bulls in Spain. He was an avid fisherman and hunter who fed his family game like bear. He moved to Paris and to Key West to write. He hunted big game in Africa and deep see fishing in the Florida Keys.

He had his problems as well, which were just as enormous as his life. He suffered from depression and alcoholism and often shirked what some saw as his responsibilities. For instance, some felt he should've been covering the war in Europe but instead loaded up a boat with a few bombs, patrolled the Keys hoping to get close enough to a German U-Boat to drop a bomb down the hatch of it. Instead, he only got drunk and had some great fishing stories. He did cover the war and even "liberated" his favorite bar in Paris.

But he was a man's man, and I don't mean in the sense that he had several wives. No, I mean he was what men aspire to in that sort of bravado way we retreat to when we've had our wings clipped be it due to work or family or economics. He was the man we aspire to be. He was larger than life. This article, in some way, seemed to be a challenge to men everywhere to do those things that you really want to.

Isn't it amazing how we can go through our life just knowing the name of someone but not understanding their life story? I wonder who the female equivalent of Papa Doc is? Frida Kahlo? O'Keefe? I'm just rambling on again as usual.


sonrisa morena said...

i'm a huuuge fan of Frida Kahlo and i have ALWAYS been amazed at how great she was and the impact she continues to have on people. my plan was to go to la casa azul while in mexico but it didn't happen. i've been to Hemingway's house a few years ago in Florida and it was wierd just standing in front of it. i'm not a fan of his so i can't even imagine what it would have been like to go to la casa azul.

They were both incredible individuals that lead the most fascinating least i think they did. i sometimes wonder what they were really like, you know what i mean? we only know what we have read about them but we really don't know how they really were...anywho just like you i'm rambaling.

AND i used to work at a small convenience store and i met alot of guys so who knows maybe you'll meet your next girlfriend at this place. hope you are doing better.

Cincysundevil said...

Thank you for being so positive when all I see is negativity. Hopefully one day I can hit Frida's house as well. She was an amazing Mexicana whose influence will be felt for generations to come.