Archive for the ‘3.5-4.0’ Category

#47 Farming

October 11, 2011

Scholars maintain that a turning point in human civilization was the moment we began to farm. It ended a brutal and time-consuming nomadic lifestyle, opened up a new source of nutrition and generated a new concept in everyday life: free-time.

This free-time fostered the arts, written history, useful inventions, and most importantly, spectator sports.

Farming has evolved over the thousands of years to become what is now a series of profoundly Manly tasks, especially for farmers in the United States of America (who by default, earn bonus points).

A typical day in the life of an American farmer: After going to sleep at around 11pm the night before, the farmer is awake at 430am. After putting on something created and sold by Carhartt, he heads out to begin his early morning chores, especially if he has dairy cows. If he has sons (he does), they join him. No talking is allowed, or desired for that matter.

Taking care of the cows is followed up a hearty breakfast, one that would typically cause a heart attack for anyone less Manly. After breakfast, the farmer puts in several hours of labor before sunrise, at which point a comment is made about what a pussy the sun is. The rest of the day is spent typically using large, combustible engine based motor vehicles, whether it is an F-250 or a John Deere tractor. Large amounts of things are moved to places they need to be. Neighbors (within ~50 miles) may come by to discuss important matters, such as the local deer population, and complete other tasks, such as borrowing massive power tools to fix fences or other badass and important shit. This is encouraged. The day ends with another visit to the cows, the local paper, another hearty meal, tobacco, whiskey, and perhaps a barely audible baseball game on the radio.

Farming is a high grade Mantivity. It demands extreme work ethic, lots of time outdoors, Manly clothing, and knowledge gleaned only by listening to and spending time with your father. Farming earns a 3.6-4.0 Mantivity score range. It is the backbone of civilization as we know it, much like Men.


#42 Leading a Charge

January 10, 2009

War is gruesome and horrible. I do not condone war. In fact, I didn’t really even want to fight for Agamemnon, but 13th century AD Greece was really boring, so I did it anyways. My point is this: sometimes war is necessary. Sometimes good Men must gather in order to fight for honor and glory, and to stop genocide. When this happens, Men must rally together, even when things appear truly bleak. Say, for example, you are outnumbered 10 to 1, and your fellow patriots begin to retreat for fear of their lives. This is when a Man must lead a charge.

The proper technique for leading a charge is as follows: if you do not have a flag, hold your weapon, be it a sword, a rifle, or a hand grenade, one arms-length above your head. Begin shouting as you would if a bunch of pac-10 referees lost the game for you. Run directly at your enemies, preferably passing a bunch of retreating companions as you do. If you do have a flag, you must wave it in a figure 8 above your head, shouting either “America,” “Freedom,” or “Victory,” before following the previously described procedure.

The Mantivity score for leading a charge is 3.9. You can gain bonus points for charging uphill, charging in the midst of a fearsome snow storm, or charging into a hopelessly large army in the hopes that you can leap over the ranks to decapitate their king. We are also legally required to warn you that this Mantivity results in death nine times out of ten.

#39 Snowmobiling

November 15, 2008

Men have many options when it comes to spending leisure time. They can shoot animals, get in a bar fight, or not do anything at all. These options, however, become much more limited when a Man finds himself in North Pole, Alaska. In this case a Man must adapt. Thus, Men have invented the snowmobile.

The snowmobile is propelled by a continuous track in the rear, and it is steered by two skis in the front. In this way it is kind of like a mix between a tank and a skiing bear. The end result is an extremely fast, loud, powerful machine that disturbs wildlife and disrupts the tranquility of the great outdoors. It is somewhat similar to a jet ski, except you don’t look like a douche bag when you use it. In fact, you really look like an astronaut. Awesome.

Men love snowmobiling because it is fun, dangerous, and the principal mode of transportation in Canada. The Mantivity score for a day-long snowmobiling excursion is 2.3. This does not include the other Mantivities that will undoubtedly occur on said excursion (ie urinating outside, talking about torque, starting a fire). The Mantivity score for winning a snowmobiling contest of some sort begins at 3.1, and can be as high as 4.0 for winning the Tesoro Iron Dog.

#36 Tailgating

September 5, 2008

Ceremonies are important parts of a Man’s life. Sometimes, Men need to prepare for these ceremonies by drinking beer, grilling meat, and shouting indiscernible things at people wearing what is deemed the “wrong” color. In modern times, this series of events has developed a name—Tailgating. However, Men everywhere know that this timeless tradition dates back to the time of Crogmanon Man, who would prepare for bi-weekly Wooly Mammoth hunts by stabbing himself with hot iron spearheads and throwing rocks at the inferior Neanderthals. Direct evidence of this evolution can be found at college campuses during rivalry week.

Tailgates allow a Man to drink, eat unhealthy (Manly) foods, and act like a general idiot alongside his companions. Most of the time, tailgates occur as a lead-up to important sporting events, especially football. This is appropriate and society accepts it as such. However, if shielded from society’s scorn, Men would tailgate before 3rd grade soccer games, high school graduation ceremonies, and funerals.

It is important to adhere to a strict code of conduct during these tailgates. The host of the tailgate should provide food and beverage to the guests, who can be old friends or passer-bys that happen to be wearing the right color for the upcoming ceremony. (In the case of a funeral tail-gate, indiscernible shouting should occur in the general direction of those wearing white or pink. Beers should be distributed to those in black.) Above all else, it is important that the tailgate not forget its ultimate objective:  preparation for the ceremony occuring after the tailgate—tailgates lacking purpose lose tailgate status. But hanging around for no reason, grilling, and drinking is a Mantivity all on it’s own.

A well-thought out tailgate, with sufficient food and beverage, and the appropriate level of intensity and enthusiasm for the upcoming ceremony receives a Mantivity score of 3.7. Bonus points are earned if this is who shows up at your tailgate.

#34 Obtaining Scars

July 25, 2008

Over the course of a Man’s life, he does a lot of things that leave marks on his skin. These marks can be burns, bruises, and most important of them, scars, which last the longest and therefore provide the most time for a Man to discuss the Mantivity that undoubtedly left the mark. The two tenets of obtaining scars are the Manliness of the activity that led to its obtainment and how the Man discusses the scar.

There are many different types of scars, each from a different cause. A common scar is one resulting from a surgery. Typically, this is not Manly, though there are some qualifications to that, like if the surgery is performed without anesthesia, with a buck knife in the wild, or if the surgery is performed 20 feet from live combat. Scars obtained over the course of a fight are typically more Manly than surgerical scars, and can be among the most Manly, depending on the reason for the fight, the location, and the outcome. If the fight occurred over something like a poorly reserved seat, then the scar is automatically pathetic. But if the fight occurred over the greatness of America or spilled Pabst, then any scars obtained from the battle are legitimate. Almost all Mantivities above a 4.0 score leave scars on the Man completing them, and this is appropriate. If you climb Mt. Everest and walk away unscathed, then you were most likely carried to the top (unManly).

Just as important as the Mantivity which caused the scar, is the way the Man handles scar-discussion in various contexts. As with all Mantivities, nonchalance is of the utmost importance. Regardless of what happened, the event which caused the scar, as painful as it might have been, inflicted minor discomfort and nothing more (for example, if you got a massive burn saving a baby from a fire, you don’t even remember the pain, you just wanted to get the child out of there). A Man should never bring up his own scar. This is simply bad form and ends any opportunity for legitimate nonchalance during the discussion, thus eliminating a major component of the Mantivity.

Obtaining scars is a Mantivity with a larger range, but most scars, if they are the result of a Manly source and the discussion is executed correctly, fall between 1.5 and 4.0. The general rule is that the score cannot be higher than the score of the Mantivity which resulted in the scar itself, though there is an exception. If the scar is intense but caused by an unManly moment or activity, like tripping, cleaning, accidentally hitting your head, or cutting yourself while slicing strawberries, then it is wise for a Man to recall something he did that could have caused the scar, but didn’t, like the story of the wild boar he wrestled in the African Savannah.

#31 Digging

June 22, 2008

A common misconception is that it is Manly to get dirty. This is not the case. The truth is that a lot of Mantivities result in dirtiness, and so many people assume that the dirtiness is itself Manly, but really there are ways to get dirty that are very unManly (ie mudbath). Digging, of course, is the foremost example of a Manly way to get dirty, because the whole idea is to move dirt, and a lot of that dirt will end up on your skin.

Men have a lot of reasons to dig. The most ancient of these is the search for buried treasure, which Men have been doing for a long time. When digging for buried treasure, a Man must use a standard shovel, and then when the shovel runs into something hard (the shovel will make a sound), must get on his knees, and use his bare hands to finish the job. After that he can move to Bermuda, or just go home and watch the game, depending on the nature of the treasure.

More common than the search for buried treasure is the digging done in the construction industry. In the middle ages, the construction industry focused on digging moats, massive trenches, and digging up rocks to build really useful stuff. Today, construction Men dig in order to lay foundations for buildings, and do other important stuff, like reroute rivers and bury nuclear waste.

The fact is, there are plenty of Manly reasons to dig (we haven’t even mentioned all the reasons a Man might dig a tunnel). The Mantivity score varies widely depending on which reason a Man has, but even something as simple as burying some bones for later use will get you a 1.5 (this is more often done by dogs than Men, but keep it in mind).

#30 Driving a Semi

June 6, 2008

On the highway, semi trucks are big, usually slow, and always driven by Men. When the semi truck was first invented in the mid 20th century, a Man saw it and said “I need to drive that right now.” That is just how it works with semi trucks and Men. (it also explains why tonka trucks are the most widely sold Man-in-training toy in the history of the world.

The thing about a semi truck that makes driving one so Manly is that it is literally unstoppable, figuratively. If we take a look at Newton’s law of momentum, p=mv, where p is momentum, m is mass, and v is velocity, we can see that semi trucks, with a mass of 1 billion megapounds, are very momentous objects when in motion. This is what subconsciously draws a Man to them.

Being a semi truck driver tends itself to a very Manly lifestyle. While truckers enjoy a lot of solitude (Manly in and of itself) they also get to do on a daily basis such things as hang out at truck stops, flick off prius drivers, wear cut off flannel shirts, and chew tabacco. Obviously, this is a Manly lifestyle.

The Mantivity score for Driving a Semi is 3.5. You can earn bonus points by having a name like “Hank,” and for hauling especially Manly objects, like Pabst or recently logged trees. Also, if you are a real semi truck driver, and you see someone else who obviously doesn’t drive trucks wearing a “trucker” hat, punch him in the face, so the hat falls off.

#25 Bushwhacking

May 6, 2008

Ever been lost in the Adirondacks, with nighttime rapidly approaching? Ever found yourself tracking a black Rhino in sub-Saharan Africa? Ever been in the Marines, following a band of Communist spies? If you have answered yes to any of these questions, than you have surely been Bushwhacking.

Bushwhacking is what Men do when they are surrounded by obnoxious and prickly branches, leaves, and thorns. Before the invention of bicycles, cars, and Silverados, bushwhacking was the next step up for transportation, after walking. In the modern age, however, a Man bushwhacks not out of choice, but out of necessity – because the bush lies between the Man and his objective, whether it be the Viet Kong, a nearly extinct species, or a large batch of treasure. Upon realizing that bushwhacking is his only option, the Man will whip out his machete and begin swinging like his first name is Tiger.

More often than not, 10 minutes into an episode of bushwhacking, a Man will begin to sweat profusely, causing him to rip off his shirt sleeves for use as bandannas, and attracting an abnormal amount of mosquitoes. He should end up looking something like Rambo. When he returns from bushwhacking, the Man will smell like a pack of coyotes, and he should have numerous cuts across legs, arms, and face.

The Mantivity score for several hours of hardcore bushwhacking in the described manner is 3.7. Of course, bushwhacking is often just a piece of another Mantivity, so a lot depends on the reason for the bushwhacking. But trust me, if you are doing this, you can bet the farm that your score is really high.

#19 Gaining Altitude

April 8, 2008

From birth, it is Man’s natural instinct to be higher than he is at the moment, and higher than all those around him. Anyone with male children can testify to boys’ insatiable desire to climb things – boulders, ladders, trees, large animals. As these boys become Men, their desire to gain altitude is refined, and reflected in more ambitious and difficult altitude-gaining Mantivities.

The most obvious of these is mountain climbing. Although not all Men are interested in mountain climbing, every Man at some point dreams of standing on top of a mountain and shouting something victorious, or perhaps urinating. Of course, the ultimate feat of altitude gaining is the climbing of Mount Everest – successfully completing this Mantivity puts a Man at near immortal status (the Mantivity score is 4.7, 4.9 if done without oxygen).

Another example of Men gaining altitude occurs in the corporate world. Here, we see the creation of large towers, whose sole purpose is to provide Men with the opportunity to gain altitude (The Male species is the only one capable of this). Once the towers are built, the highest offices with the most majestic views are taken by the most successful and powerful Men. Indeed, it is often said that a Man’s success can be judged by the size of his salaryaltitude of his office.

The list goes on, and some of these will be touched on in future posts (being a pilot, slam-dunking, being an astronaut), but before concluding this discussion, it is important to understand why Men want to gain altitude. The answer stems from the ancient times, when kings and emperors built their castles on the highest possible point, so as to make them safe from attack, and to intimidate the peasants in the valley below. Every Man secretly yearns to be a King, and Man’s desire to gain altitude stems from this ancient impulse. The Mantivity score for gaining altitude literally ranges from 0.1 to 4.9, as there are almost infinite ways to do this. Be creative!

Update: Boone pointed out to me that the third paragraph implies that a Man’s success is related to his salary. This is true only in the context of the business world. A Man’s overall success (read, Manliness) is judged by a much more extensive and complex criterion, ie has he or has he not ever killed a lion with his bare hands.

#11 Launching Rockets

March 27, 2008

Invented during the 13th century, somewhere near the region we today call Latvia, the rocket launcher is a Man tool that has been both praised and admonished by society for its startling effectiveness in helping Men launch rockets. The typical rocket launcher is small enough so that it can be hoisted onto the shoulder of a Man, yet large enough so that a Man can use it to bludgeon aliens to death with it, if need be.

Like any Man tool, rocket launchers can do great good when in the hands of a true Man, but great evil when in the hands of a coward. This is because after the rockets have been launched, they streak towards their targets at 1,000,000 miles per hour, and then explode on contact – an effective means of target eradication. The important thing with this tool, therefore, is what exactly the target is. If the target is Hitler, then the Man tool has been used properly. If the target is a school bus, then the Man tool has been gravely misused, unless Hitler is the only passenger of the bus.

Rocket launchers can be pricey, so if you do not have the money, we recommend stealing one from your nearest Cold War arms stash. While you are there pick up a nuclear bomb – those can come in handy. The Mantivity score for launching rockets is 3.6, assuming you are fighting against the forces of evil. If your rockets are heat-seaking, the score is 3.8. Let’s blow some shit up.