Stooge Cover Up?

Larry Fine (right) with Moe Howard and Curly H...
Larry Fine (right) with Moe Howard and Curly Howard in 1938’s Healthy, Wealthy and Dumb (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

As men we are responsible to keep up a constant vigil for potential cover-ups and scandals.  Such examples:

  • Humpty Dumpty – – – he fell? OR, was he pushed?
  • Star Wars – – – true story?
  • Snow White, Seven Dwarfs – – – Was Grumpy supposed to be a scapegoat / fall guy (because of his bad attitude) for the issues about Snow White’s security detail?

And then, there are the Three Stooges.  Was there, in fact, a Fifth Stooge?   Many believe that this “unknown” should continue to be an “unknown”.  Even if there was a Fifth Stooge, and I believe there was, the disruption  / fallout from such a discovery could be unprecedented.

The original Three Stooges in Soup to Nuts
The original Three Stooges in Soup to Nuts (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Suspicions came after a Fourth Stooge emerged.  The Fifth Stooge lived near the Boundary Waters of Minnesota, in a small cabin.  This was to keep the Fifth Stooge in a clandestine existence, in the event that something were to happen to one of the original Three Stooges.  There would be a backup if the Fourth Stooge was not available.

Eventually, the Stooges became jealous of the other Stooges, for lack of air-time.  The Stooges met annually at a remote fishing lodge off the cost of Canada.  Dissention intensified when the Fifth consistently caught more fish than the others.

The Fifth Stooge soon after disappeared, and has not been heard from since.  Whatever possible proof of a fifth stooge has been confiscated, supposedly by another clandestine organization, “FOOL”: Friends Of Odd Lunatics.  Therefore, all information in this post has never been verified.  As a result, all of this is theoretical.


Men and PG-13 Movies … Choose Wisely

Hey, fellas … or is it “fellows”?  I think I’ll stick with “fellas”.

I actually go to our county library to check out movies, because they are less inexpensive (FREE ! !).  Call me old-fashioned / a bit eccentric.  No problem.  Several months ago, my wife and I agreed that “R” movies were not an option, with some exceptions.   “Argo” / Ben Affleck is a good example of an exception: great movie.

Here’s my point, about choosing wisely.  Some guys are courageous, and they will watch a movie with their wife / girlfriend that has a … “tough” … ending.  And what does “tough ending” mean?  Well, I mean that the movie taps an emotional response, of sadness / tears.  I applaud those guys.  I am not one of them.  I avoid those movies like a plague.  But … every once in a while … one of those heart-grabbers sneaks by. 


A Little Bit of Heaven poster.jpg
A Little Bit of Heaven poster.jpg

Tonight we watched a movie called “A Little Bit of Heaven”.  WHAT WAS I THINKING ?

Excellent movie, as far as acting and plot.  But you learn early on that the protagonist (Kate Hudson) has a terminal illness.  So, if you want to watch this movie, I have not spoiled it for you.  But, I had to really concentrate to keep my eyes tearless.  Somehow, I was able to pull it off.  I just left for my office as soon as the movie was over with and starting blogging.  Again: I think this was an excellent movie.  But if you watch it guys, just be ready.

I wonder if there is a website for guys to find out what movies have the potential to make a man cry.  Does anybody know? I’ve fumbled with these kinds of movies before:

  • The Notebook (wife convinced me to watch it …. OOOOOH!)
  • Shadow Lands
  • When a Man Loves a Woman

Then, of course, there was “Old Yeller”.  I saw that when I was a kid.  I think that was one of the bigger mistakes I’ve made.  Such movies that can possibly make a man cry cause me to appreciate movies like:

  • Bourne Identity
  • Mission Impossible
  • The Italian Job

YES.  THAT’s what I’m talking about. 

Men … Thought and Life … WATCHOUT !

“Life” is connected to “live”… OK.  “Live” is connected to “living”… OK.  “Living is the opposite of “death” … OK.  BUT … one can be living and experiencing death, at the same time … How I think, and therefore What I offer, will exude life, or death. 

  • What I offer my son will exude life or death.
  • What I offer my daughter will exude life or death.
  • What I offer my wife will exude life or death.

One of my son’s favorite quotes is from a movie called “Braveheart”: “All men die, but few men live.”  My son, wow … out of the mouth and heart and mind of my son … inspiration and conviction.  A particular mentor talked to me about the profound difference between words of life versus words of death.  I was once a dead man walking.  How I think will affect my emotions, my actions, and my reactions; and how I think will make a difference between life and death.

And there … is some thought in this life.

Understanding Your Spouse? HA! Seriously?

Jack Gleason
Jackie Gleason

Men: what does this look like?  Different facial expressions?  With confusion comes frustration, when you are not anywhere near the same page.  I WANT to be on the same page, and I WANT to understand.  To be misunderstood can be a real bummer.  In some cases I’ve looked at the book cover and asked “Do I have the right book?”

Ok, I’m coming up short on understanding.  At the church, I wore a tux and she wore a white dress (she made it herself and it was phenomenal).  I figured that we had a good understanding of each other, and always would, and that this connected to the next part: living happily ever after.  As time went on, our understanding of each other was not happening 100% of the time like I expected. 

The ongoing talk of “I don’t understand my (spouse)!” (in some some cases accentuated by a whining dynamic) is legitimate, and I do wonder  why is it so difficult to understand each other.  False expectations?  And false expectations can produce a high intensity mixture of confustion and frustration, with a (crazy, I know, unrealistic) consideration that maybe my angel of a wife is manipulating me.

“You want me …to do what?”  “But, honey, we already talked about this.  You said you would do this for me.”

Frantically, my mind races back to the past, in an attempt to retrieve this profoundly important data, grabbing for the context, the time of day.   I then ask myself “Would I REALLY agree to this? No, I don’t think so.”   So then I ask my better half:

“What was I doing when you were saying this?”

  1. Why would we / should we . . . be able to completely understand our wives ALL the time?  We’re two different individuals.  And in my case, we are two different genders, she from the Upper Midwest, not far from Canada; and I am from the South … way south … where some folks are still wearing loin cloths.  Thus, the way we think, the way we are wired, and the culture we grew up could play a role in this “understanding thing”.
  2. If we completely understood each other all the time, wouldn’t that be boring?  Part of how we are drawn to each other is our differences.  And, if we did understand each other, what would be the motivation to move toward our wives, to develop a better understanding (which means becoming more empathetic)?
  3. Lastly, as men, we are wild (we’ve covered this already).  Wildmen are not predictable, unless you are a “Yes, Dear” husband.  This is part of why she married you because she found you interesting, and not boring.  She was attracted to your wildness, among other amazing characteristic.  It gets confusing because at times it feels like our wives are attempting to take our wildness away, and replace it for “tameness”.  That may not be what is happening, but it can certainly feel that way. 

Wrapping up I will say that my family, not just my wife but my kids and my neighbors, act as if they do not understand me because I swing on a vine from tree to tree wearing a bunch of bushes, letting out a “AHHHHHH-EEEE-YAH-EEE-YAH-AHHHHH ….”  And I have to leave for a rew months to go find pricless archaelogical treaures, and fight bad guys trying to take my stuff away.  She thinks that it is odd for me to wear a brown fedora / khaki pants / boots / brown leather jacket / leather pouch, and a bullwhip.  And when I howl at the moon, my kids and my wife and my neighbors don’t seem to get that.  So, it is just me?  Or are you guys dealing with the same stuff?

indiana jones 4 movie stills 02
indiana jones 4 movie stills 02


Hey, Man: You Have a Call On Line #1, a Woman

Pick up the phone. 

Men, women are calling us out: wives, girlfriends, friends who are girls, and . . . both wives and girlfriends.

Some have been calling for a while; and your choice is about how to respond.

So what are the messages we are getting, when the callings come?

  • “Be a man, get on with your life, do what you are supposed to do”;
  • “You blew it … you were so consumed with yourself that you did not care about anyone else, and now I am gone …”;
  • “I don’t feel safe with you, or respected, or cherished…”;
  • “If you really want to connect, then you can make the effort…”;
  • “Grow up … I think you are looking for your mother …”

I’ll tell you a secret, guys: there is one message that I find very disruptive.  It’s when my wife calls me out … to greater things … to step up, and to be a better man.  It’s when she calls me out of my hiding, and to walk in the glory.  It’s disruptive because she is right to call me out.  It’s disruptive because she is loving me in a very powerful way.  And I really believe … that most of us … at given times, not always … are disrupted by true intimacy.

Why is that?

(The guy repeats the message on the intercom) “Hey, Wilder Man! Pick up line #1, Man!  She’s on hold.”

So, I push a button on the phone to respond to the guy: “Uhhh … Tell her … I am in the middle of something, and I will have to call her later.”

Igor & Eeyore, Male Depression, Slight Humor

cartoon image of angry man jumping up and down

My fifth grade teacher returns from his errand, bursts through the door, crazy eyes, searching each one of us for the ringleader for our prank:  “WHAT … is the MEANING OF THIS?!!  Things happen, it was a long time ago, and we lived through it.   But the question has transcended our years on the planet: (a variation) “What does this mean?”

Other end of the spectrum, a philosophy professor.  I brought in a book I was reading (by Kahil Gibran) … wanted his opinion. He looked at the book, paused for a good minute, and I knew he was not impressed.  “Sit down. (pause) In philosophy, I ask three questions: 1) Is this true?, 2) What facts support this?, and 3) What does this mean?”

‘Never forgot that discussion.  I focus on male depression with the work I do . . .  And with the multifaceted pieces of male depression, this necessary question comes up:

Cover of "I Don't Want to Talk About It: ...
Cover via Amazon

“What does this mean?”  I will once again reference this work: I Don’t Want To Talk About It by Terrence Real.  Excellent read, if you have any interest in male depression.   Because of my commitment, or eccentric desire, to think outside the box, I have thought of other metaphors for male depression.  A short ride, but go ahead and fasten your seat-belts: we’re going outside the box.
Igor going after a brain.

I was thinking of Igor, but I get Igor and Eeyore confused.  At times I think of Igor as a small mule with an abnormal growth on one of his shoulders, who works for a severe introvert, a temperamental bear … I found out that it was not a mule with a bowling ball-shaped growth on his shoulder.  It was a human being working for a guy named Frank … not a bear.  I think of Igor as an unfortunate gentleman who experienced a great deal of isolation, which is part of the whole depression dance. Igor has some performance issues and he goes to great lengths to become accepted.  He has a crush on a gal, Esmerelda, and she doesn’t really love him, but she doesn’t have the substance to tell the poor boy … Things get messed up real quick.

Quasimodo (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In fact, in one story he goes by “Igor”; and in another story he goes by “Quasimodo“, the Latin words “quasi” and “modo” also mean “almost” and “the standard measure” respectively. As such, Quasimodo is ‘almost the standard measure’ of a human being.’  Anyway, Esmerelda dies … and Quasimodo kills his boss who is in reality “Frollo“, which should NOT be confused with “Frodo”.

Let me add some words that might tie all this together.  Igor and / or Quasimodo are given a great weight to bear, which . . . for me ….  symbolizes a number of things, possibly depression.  Igor / Quasimodo deal with isolation, stigma, great sadness, and anger at times.  Those are just a few items that intersect (at times) with male depression.  I used the term “Eclectic View” because I do believe that the men who fight depression effectively MUST think outside the box and think from an eclectic perspective: CBT, Rogerian, Existential, NLP, RET … etc., In addition to thinking with responsible eclecticism, a depressive MUST acquire redemptive humor.  Oh, as for Eeyore?  He had an exchange with a bear that struck me:

“Good morning, Pooh Bear,” said Eeyore gloomily. “If it is a good morning,” he said. “Which I doubt,” said he.  /  “Why, what’s the matter?” “Nothing, Pooh Bear, nothing. We can’t all, and some of us don’t. That’s all there is to it.” / “Can’t all what?” said Pooh, rubbing his nose. / “Gaiety. Song-and-dance. Here we go round the mulberry bush.”

Yes … an eclectic view.