“Love” an Original Poem

Love places a woman in her kitchen.

Love moves her hands to clean.

Love lifts her children from the floor.

Love leads her to her husband’s arms.

Hate pulls her from her world,

Imprisons her in glass and steel.

It takes from her her dignity.

Hate forces her to the world of men.

Love is freedom.

Hate is oppression.

Love begets love.

Hate begets hate.

Yes, I’m one of history’s many manly men that have engaged in the expressive art of poetry. I’m not going to say much to explain it since poetry is as much in the reading as it is in the writing. The one thing I am going to say though is this; if you found anything misogynistic in my poem then either you missed the point or you’re the misogynist.

Edit: This poem has also been published on DeviantArt.


We Want You for the Army of Men

When I talk about an “army of men” it sounds like a group that seeks to forward a patriarchal agenda through violence, but we already have a group like that, they’re called ISIS. When it comes down to it an army is about community and service. They’re fraternities that step up for the good of their countries. That’s what I mean by an army of men. We need more men like that, men that value the good of their communities and seek to serve.

The Modern Lack of Service

Some people may take exception to the suggestion that service has disappeared from our world, but that’s not quite what I mean. I mean genuine service has become quite rare. Most “service” these days can be grouped into three categories;


Most employment is some form of exploitation. We serve the rich and they give us disproportionately little compensation. We make huge sacrifices for their benefit but they almost never show their gratitude. They just cast us aside when we’re no longer of use to them. That’s not service, it’s slavery.


You see it all the time that companies use charitable contributions as a form of marketing. They make donations to get there names on stadiums and performing arts festivals but when you look behind the curtains they’re guilty of some heinous atrocities. Service is selfless. How can it be selfless if they insist on attaching their name to the benefactor?

Ego Nutrition

It seems people often do some sort of service just because it makes them feel good. A lot of this kind of service is only helpful in the short term, even when we could resolve the issue permanently. In some cases, the “service” is a problem itself, like how we deal with poverty. We may feed the poor, but to a very low standard, we may house the homeless, but temporarily and in conditions we’d barely subject animals to, we make poverty unbearable by refusing to provide adequate help.

Dig a “Back Channel” of Service

The only acceptable reason for service to be a “one way street” is if one side lacks the means to serve. If a port only had channels leading away from the docks but not toward them, it would be useless. It would drain the community of all its resources so it can’t even support itself. So why don’t we apply the same logic to service. If you’re going to expect someone to serve you, then you need to be willing to serve others. What you need to remember, paying someone doesn’t satisfy any obligation to serve them. As soon as negotiation and market forces enter the equation, the result can’t be considered service. Only payment above and beyond a fair reward can be considered service, payment below that point is exploitation.

That said, that “back channel” doesn’t need to always lead directly to those who serve you. The more you take from the community, the more you should give back. If you’re living a life of excess in a city with poverty, then the poverty is your fault. If there’s illiteracy, you need to help the schools. Conservatives often object to big government and many of their social programs, but they’re only necessary because so many refuse to do their part.

Build Your Community

Unfortunately, most of us are forced into isolation by the anti-community society we now live in. So few of us live in places with parks that moms and kids frequent or pubs where the men get together to commiserate about the work day. Church attendance isn’t even something we can assume anymore. All that means we don’t naturally develop strong communities. We have to seek it out intentionally. Finding likeminded people can be quite difficult and they may be spread out all over the area, which will make it harder to build and maintain the relationships that lie at the core of the community.

Community has a lot of benefits. To start with, it allows you to form or join an honour group, to give you a stronger motivation to be a good man. It also gives you a support system you can call on when you need it. Most obviously, it gives you the social life that we crave as humans.

The Recruiting Pitch

How could I use a picture of Uncle Sam and not have a recruiting pitch? We need all the men we can get but we can’t conscript anymore, too many people are against having men be the soldiers of righteousness. That is, after all, what joining the army of men is, becoming a soldier of righteousness. I’m asking you to stand up for what’s right, by whatever means you can.

How can you join? We don’t have recruiting offices but you can join by simply deciding to. Start building your community. You can be one of the first to join my charity and honour society, or find another group of honourable men and ladies to join, and build your community off of that.

I’d also advise that you join a medium size church. If a church is too large it tends to lack community, and if it’s too small it’ll lack the resources for effective services, and likely feel closed. If church isn’t the place for you at this point in your life, find another service organization, like your local Rotary Club or Freemason Lodge.

Do some soul searching. Reflect on this. Pray on it. Do whatever you do to consider your decisions. When you’re ready, join the Army of Men and make it a part of who you are. Work to improve yourself and your community. Share this call to service and community, and maybe leave a comment to show solidarity with your new “brothers in arms” and your support for the prospective recruits.

The Forms of Patriarchy

When people, especially feminists, talk about patriarchy, they tend to see it as all or nothing. Either men are in charge or we’re not, but when you start to challenge that assumption it starts to crumble quite quickly. After all, when was the last time you heard of a man making a decision without giving even the slightest consideration to his wife’s opinion.

What is Patriarchy?

The simplest and most general definition of patriarchy is leadership by men. Any case in which a man gets any degree of power from his gender is patriarchy, whether as isolated as a date or as widespread and long lasting as the papacy. Patriarchy can be absolute or it can complement democracy or matriarchy.

A man having power isn’t necessarily patriarchy. Sometimes a man gets power from something independent of his gender. A senior military officer is chosen for his skill as a commander, which doesn’t preclude women. A man drives his car on a date because it’s his car. Even on a date, a man’s power usually comes from having planned the date, not from being the man.

Oppressive Patriarchy

As you likely guessed, I’m starting with a form of patriarchy I completely oppose. Fortunately, it’s also been the exception throughout history right up to the present day. Oppressive patriarchy is the entirely misogynistic form of patriarchy. This is where ideas like “women are property” and “all women are weak” can be found. Oppressive patriarchs treat women as servants, ignoring their interests. When women are seen as being of less general worth than men, oppressive patriarchy is at work.

The irony is, feminism is encouraging the type of oppressive patriarchy it claims to be fighting.

Strict Patriarchy

A crucial step removed from oppressive patriarchy, strict patriarchy is the belief that men must never be lead by women. Women are still valued but there are choices that people are denied. In isolated cases it works well but when implemented on a societal scale it tends to become oppressive.

Assumed Patriarchy

Assumed patriarchy is the good form. It really has no down side. When patriarchy is assumed, women can have any power or position when it’s justified, but power goes to men otherwise. There’s no reason that a woman that supports assumed patriarchy couldn’t pursue a career, it just means that deviating from the patriarchal roles would mean she expects to be treated as the exception. This is the philosophy of a good head of household, or any man with a healthy idea of gender for that matter.

This may not be the most actionable of information but it does give you a better understanding of how men and women might interact than what you might learn elsewhere. One last thing to keep in mind; matriarchy could take the same forms but the evidence seems to indicate that matriarchy on a societal level would be disastrous. If you only take one point away from this article, it should be this; patriarchy can be respectful of a woman’s right to choose and can see a woman as having enormous value. So, assume patriarchy, deviate when appropriate, and never look down on those that follow it. 

Is Diversity Good or Bad?

Diversity is one facet of life where people tend to just accept what they’ve been told without examining the situation for themselves. Modern society says diversity is good so people just accept that. But is it good?

To discuss diversity, we must define diversity. Diversity is when there’s more variety within a group than a group that size would inherently have. For example, a group of one hundred white Christian men would have a variety because it’s one hundred individuals, but adding women, Muslims, and Asians would make that group diverse because no group would inherently have that composition.

The Benefit of Diversity 

There is one form of diversity that inevitably flows from all others; diversity of ideas. When we’re presented with a wider variety of ideas, we evaluate them more carefully and come to better decisions. Why does demographic diversity create diversity of ideas? Simple, ideas are formed through the guidance of personal experiences, and everyone’s personal experiences are different. The extent to which personal experience varies proportionally with the difference in demographics. Two rich white men will have very similar experiences and thus ideas, but change even one of those descriptors and their experiences and ideas massively diverge. 

The Problem with Diversity 

Diversity breeds conflict. No matter where a difference comes from, it can give rise to serious conflicts. Wars have been fought over these differences. Conflicts may come from prejudice or reasonable differences of opinion, and they may be rational debates or outright brawls, but conflict is likely to arise in a diverse environment. On the other hand, nobody ever fights because they agree and less diversity means more agreement. 

Natural vs. Artificial Diversity

This is something that seems to rarely come up, why diversity does or does not exist. Natural diversity is diversity that arises because nothing’s preventing it, artificial diversity is when it’s created intentionally. Natural diversity is more likely to bring about a healthy diversity of ideas and less conflict, but artificial diversity is the opposite. 


Is diversity good or bad? Yes. What? It’s not whether or not diversity exists that matters, it’s why. Natural diversity is good and artificial diversity is bad. The same goes for homogeneity. We shouldn’t be actively pursuing diversity but we shouldn’t be fighting it either. When it happens, awesome. When it doesn’t happen, that’s fine too. 

Hosting a Poker Night

Four playing cards and a cigar.

The essential equipment of a poker night.

The quintessential manly social event is the poker night. There’s gambling, booze, and rarely a feminine influence. Even better, it’s based around an activity rather than just socialising. I’m not going to get into how to play again. This time I’m going to talk about hosting the game. A poker night is a type of party and all the usual hosting etiquette applies.

The Simple Points

A poker night should be a casual affair centred entirely on the game. It’s one of the few parties where a t-shirt is undeniably appropriate. There’s no guest of honour or theme, it’s all about the poker. So, there shouldn’t be any other entertainment either. You don’t have to lay any money on the line if you don’t want, it’s perfectly acceptable to just play for fun.

Guest List

If you have regular poker nights then your guest list is predetermined, just invite the same guys as last time. If this is the first time, or even if your poker nights are few and far between, choosing who to invite is a harder choice. It’s best if everyone plays on the same level, but you don’t want to freeze out the rookies either. The hardest part is whittling it down. You’ll typically have no more than eight people playing each hand, so inviting more people means either splitting up to play multiple simultaneous games or people are forced to sit out. I’d say you should look to have eight players or however many can play at your table, whichever’s less.

Game Space

Obviously, you need a place to play. The best is a dedicated poker table in a room that’s decorated for such activities. If that’s not viable, you can use your dining room table, but not the kitchen. Besides your usual hosting duties, you’re also responsible for providing the cards and chips.


Poker night is the time for the pub food. Chicken wings, nachos, and various deep fried appetizers are perfect fare for the occasion. This is also the time to break out the craft beer and your best scotch. If you don’t feel comfortable mixing drinks while you’re trying to play, don’t feel you have to. You’ll also want to either make sure serving food doesn’t take you away from the table too much, or get some help. If you get help, ask someone you live with or is also playing.


Cigars are a traditional part of the poker night, but you may not want to do any smoking. If you’re using a room you wouldn’t smoke in otherwise, then skip them. Same if anyone there doesn’t want to be around that. They have a right to clean air, you don’t have the right to smoke. If you decide to include cigars, you need to provide ashtrays. You can either provide decent quality cigars yourself, or expect everyone to bring their own. If you do provide them, one per person is plenty. Its important enough to reiterate, don’t force anyone to be around smoking or exclude anyone because they want clean air.

Being a Responsible Pet Owner

A cowboy with his faithful animal companions, a dog and a horse.Pets are wonderful. They can be companions, protectors, and servants. Domestic animals have been making human lives easier for millennia and there’s been a plethora of research in that time that’s shown the emotional benefits of having animal companions. Yet, it seems fewer and fewer people know how to be responsible when it comes to our furry little friends. I’ll start with the most important point.

Pets Aren’t Children

We love our pets, and well we should. I love animals myself, although I only see dogs and horses as warranting an emotional bond. One thing that many don’t seem to understand is that no matter how much you love them, they shouldn’t be treated the same as children. Human children are incapable of functioning independently, but animals can. They also won’t care if you buy them a gift or anything like that. Animals don’t think like children so they won’t respond like children either.

Know When to Leave Them at Home

Animals don’t understand human culture. They won’t feel left out if you don’t bring them along. If you do bring them, they’ll likely only notice the inconvenience of it. On the other hand, animals are a lot like us. They don’t like heat or rain, or any other kind of unpleasant weather. They’d rather go home and sleep than walk around on the hot streets. You’re often the only one getting anything out of bringing your pet. Your pet and the other people around probably hate that they’re there. If you have to leave them in the car, leave them at home instead. Also, exclude them from any activity that wouldn’t be enjoyable to them, given they’re limited intellect. You wouldn’t take your newborn baby to the opera, would you?

Train Them

What that means may vary, but every pet needs to be trained. If you don’t train your pet, it’ll end up being a nuisance and may even destroy your home. In the most extreme cases, an untrained pet becomes a threat to the safety of every one of your guests. A veterinarian should be able to help you find the help you need in training your pets but you can also find numerous books on the subject in your local library or bookstore.

Find a Vet

There’s no way to keep your pet healthy without a veterinarian. Your vet can help you diagnose any health problems your pet may have and give you excellent advice to prevent them. When your vet gives you advice, take it to heart. You don’t necessarily need to follow it, but you do need to give it due consideration.

Feed Them Properly

Again, what that means varies but it’s not hard to figure out. Once again, your vet will have some excellent advice but any commercially available food is adequate. Feeding your pets is much like feeding your children, you can feed them adequately or well. Foods with more natural ingredients are better, as well as foods that more closely parallel the diets they’d eat in the wild. You don’t have to buy the most expensive food you can find, but don’t feed them the cheapest either. If you really want, you or your wife can even make your own pet food but that’s usually only worthwhile for more typically farm animals.

Put People First

This is similar to my first point, but it is distinct. When the interests of the people in your life conflict with the interests of your pet, do what’s best for the people. For example, if you’re worried about what your dog will do to your upcoming baby, give the dog away to another loving family.

Give Your Pets Their Space

What they need varies, but every pet needs to have some kind of space where they can retreat from whatever stresses them. Animal psychology is very simple and so are their comforts. Just having a place to go that’s soft and secure can make an animal feel safe. Even better is if that space is a transport crate of some form, so they can enjoy the benefits of it during the stress of travel. After all, an animal could never understand the concept of a vehicle.

Pay Attention to Your Pets

This one should be obvious, but your pets need your love and attention. They’ll tend to become increasingly troublesome if you neglect them, and they’re health will decline as well. If you can’t give your pets the attention they crave, give them to someone who can.

Keep Them Under Control

As I said already, animals don’t understand the human world. They don’t know how to keep themselves safe. Somehow people think they need to hold their six year old’s hand but their dog can run free. Also, it’s illegal in most places to not have physical control of your pets, and nobody should have to feel unsafe because an unfamiliar dog might attack them. For the safety of your pets and the general public, keep them on a leash or locked up. It’s what your pet would prefer anyway.

The Basics of Hockey

Hockey is the ubiquitous Canadian activity, with nearly every Canadian having played some form of it. Since it was invented here, to make our long frigid winters tolerable, it’s spread around the world. Hockey is an extraordinarily manly sport, combining brute force and finesse. One article couldn’t possibly teach you enough to play on the level of Gordie Howe, ‘Rocket’ Richard, or the Great One himself, but it should be enough for you to join a pickup game or start looking for a rec league.

The Rink

Like any other sport, you need a place to play hockey. The basic forms of hockey are floor hockey, street hockey, and ice hockey, differentiated by where they’re played.

Ice hockey is played on an ice surface, either an intentional rink or a similar size area of natural ice. Intentional rinks can range from a simple backyard rink to a state of the art arena. A typical hockey rink is a rounded rectangle, about twice as long as it is wide, although the precise dimensions can vary.

Floor hockey is typically played in a gymnasium, using the entire room with only spectator areas being out of play.

Street hockey is played on driveways or public roads, with the width of the road defining the size of the play area. For safety reasons, the “car rule” is almost universally used. Any time a player or spectator notices traffic approaching the game they’re expected to yell “car” and the players and equipment move to the side of the road until the traffic clears. It’s also generally accepted driving etiquette in Canada to never drive through a street hockey game but rather wait patiently for them to clear out, for the same reason.

All hockey venues include a relatively small goal net near each end, that’s only open on the side facing towards the opposite end. Intentional rinks will often have boards around the perimeter to create a barrier to help contain both players and the puck or ball. The best rinks have markings painted on the ice. The purpose of these markings is to allow greater objectivity in applying the rules, but for casual play it’s adequate to estimate where they would be.

The rink is divided into three “zones.” The attacking zone, the neutral zone, and the defending zone. The attacking and defending zones are defined relative to each team. There are also goal lines that mark the behind the net area. One special area on the ice is the goal crease. This is an area immediately in front of the net in which only the goalie may be.

The Team

The total size of a hockey team varies, but there’s never more than six players per team on the ice;

  • 3 Forwards – primary offensive players
  • Centre – the forward primarily responsible for face-offs
  • 2 Defencemen – primarily tasked with preventing the opposing team from shooting
  • Goaltender or Goalie – the goal’s last line of defence

Players may substitute at any point during the game, not just stoppages in play.


Shared Equipment

One puck or ball and two nets must be on the ice at all times.

A puck is a hard rubber disc about 3 inches in diameter and 1 inch thick. A hockey ball is about the same diameter as a puck but made of softer rubber.

The open side of a typical goal net is 6 foot wide and 4 foot high. The closed side extends back just far enough to keep it stable, even when catching pucks and being hit by players. It’s also common to secure the net in place with pegs fitted into the ice.

Personal Equipment

The only personal equipment that’s essential for all forms of hockey is the stick. If you’ve never seen a hockey stick, they’re long with a flat blade at one end. The stick is held with the player’s off-hand near the end opposite the blade and and the strong hand half to three-quarters of the way down the shaft. Goalies use a different stick, designed to be held in one hand and effectively block shots. In both cases, the blade is the main way players manipulate the puck.

Ice hockey also requires skates, for obvious reasons. Any skates will work, but the best choice is high quality hockey skates.

Pads are also a good idea, to protect players from the brutality of the sport, and the hard puck. Goalie pads also help him to more easily stop shots, and even catch the puck in mid-air.

In formal games, team uniforms are nearly ubiquitous.


The rules of hockey are intended to limit the brutality.  While hockey is a full-contact sport, there is only one way players may come into contact while playing, the bodycheck. A bodycheck is an intentional collision between players meant to break an opposing player’s control of the puck. To be legal, a check be centred on the players’ torsos and may not involve either player’s stick or the target player’s back.

Two types of penalties are typically used in hockey; the power play and the penalty shot. Most infractions result in a power play, when a player is removed from the game temporarily and his team is forced to play shorthanded. If the infraction prevents a player from scoring a goal, he gets a penalty shot. A penalty shot is an attempt to score a goal with only the opposing goalie to interfere. 

The power play is when one team is forced to play with fewer than six players on the ice, giving an advantage to their opponents. Power plays typically last Two or five minutes, with consecutive power plays being possible. It’s also common for a power play to end once a goal is scored.


Hockey has the simplest possible scoring. Each time the puck passes through the opening in the net, a point is scored. For that reason, points are called “goals” in hockey. It’s also common to track scores for individual players. Players can score “goals” and “assists.” A goal is awarded to the last player to have control of the puck, if giving up control scores a goal (ie. he shot it). An assist is awarded to a player who didn’t actually shoot the puck but played a pivotal role in scoring a goal anyway.


The head official in a hockey game is the referee. His job is to call penalties and goals. He’s typically assisted by one or two linesmen. Their job is to make calls related to the lines on the ice, except for goals. It’s also common to have a second referee on the ice and, in serious play, off-ice officials are also common, to help keep calls objective.


Now down to brass tacks. How do you actually play hockey? To start with, hockey typically consist of three “periods.” On a professional or Olympic level, they’re twenty minutes long with five minute intermissions between them. Shorter periods are also common, to accommodate the limits of the players’ age and skill. Only time spent actively playing is counted towards the length of the period.


Play begins and resumes with a face-off. The two teams line up, facing each other, with the forwards in front and the defencemen in back. An official then drops the puck in one of nine locations on the ice, determined in advance. After goals and at the beginning of each period the centre face-off position is always used. Otherwise, they use whichever position will resume play in the most fair possible manner.


I’ve been talking about stoppage in play quite a bit, but now I’ll go into detail. Along with goals, periods, time-outs, and at the referee’s discretion, there are four things that can stop play.

The first is rather obvious. If the puck leaves the ice play is stopped. If the puck would have left the ice but stayed because of nets or cages put in place to protect spectators or rink-side facilities, it still stops play.

Play can also be stopped for an “icing” call. Icing is when the puck travels from the defending zone past the opposite goal line, but not into the net. “Offside” is a similar call. Offside is called when the puck is passed into the attacking zone.

The last thing that can stop play is a goalie. Immediately after making a save, that is stopping a shot, the goalie must either return the puck into play or “cover it up.” Usually covering it up means literally covering the puck with his glove, and then a face-off takes place at one the positions in his defending zone.


It’s quite common for the rules to not allow a tie after the regular periods. There are two ways to resolve a tie, overtime and shootouts. Overtime is simply continuing play. A shootout is when both teams get an equal number of penalty shots and then the team with the highest score wins. The “sudden death” variant is also common. In sudden death, the game ends as soon as a winner can fairly be declared, regardless of how much longer play could’ve continued. Any combination can be used, but udden death must be last.

Shooting Terms

There are a few terms that are unique to hockey, and relate to shooting, that every player should know;

  • Deke – when’s a player moves his stick as though he’s shooting but does not
  • Wrist shot – a shot with little to know wind up or follow through, used when precision is needed
  • Slap shot – a powerful shot with significant wind up and follow through
  • One-timer – when a player receiving a pass shoots without first gaining control of the puck

Getting Involved

If you want to play hockey, you have the same three options as with most sports: pickup games, leagues, and tournaments. If you have a few friends and a place to play, you can play a pickup game. If you want to join a league, contact your local arena or recreation office and ask about “rec leagues” and they’ll direct you to the league administrator or  the manager of a team seeking new players. If you want to play in a tournament, watch for notices wherever they may be posted in your community and follow the instructions.