Over the past week, I've benefited from some favorable press. On Monday, my new friend Lisa Duggan featured me on The Parent du Jour, where I shockfully reveal that I no longer have sex with my kids' mother. I met Lisa at the New Parents Expo last weekend, and predictably, she is good people. Especially because she likes to titter at terms like "12-15 inches of erogenous tissue." And presumably, at "titter."
The other momentous news is that Babble.com, arbiter of Most Things Motherly, published its list of the Top 50 Dad Bloggers. I'm proud to wear No. 6, because the list was compiled by my peers, long before I started spume-surfing. There's a lot of great individual fatherly talent there, even though old-schoolers Daddy Types and Pet Cobra were somehow overlooked.
I'm also happy to be looking up at Polly Pagenhart, who, dad blogger or Twitter mom, is just a great writer and person.
If you're visiting here for the first time from either of these sites, I'm glad you're here. I will be using this slightly larger sphere of influence to talk about ... gonads.
As I am smack in the middle of my Deadwood DVDs, I've become a little obsessive over the greatness of Al Swearengen. (So much so, in fact, that I'll be growing a Swearengen Stache as part of our ever-burgeoning Movember dadblogger team.)
I like watching DVDs because I'm a dork for the commentary, especially when it comes from the perspective of the series creator. In this case, David Milch was annotating a scene in which Swearengen is being treated for what the Doc expects are kidney stones. And since this is the 187os, the "treatment" involves probing for the stones by sticking a metal spike into Al's urethra. As you might imagine, Al spends most of this scene held down by three other guys and screaming his head off in agony, within earshot of just about everyone in the camp. One by one, the characters turn to react to the cries of "MOTHER OF GOD!" and other things that only premium cable stations can broadcast. And Milch says he wrote the scene to stress the "unity" in "community":
"Our fundamental identity isn't individual. It's collective. The sense of ourselves as separate is the real illusion. We find our best nature when we experience ourselves as part of some larger single organism."
The parallels with Movember are striking, not least because the mutual subject matter is Maladies of the Man-Groin.
A lot of men are sacrificing greatly for this effort, risking ridicule from significant others, professional colleagues, and/or the more hirsutely blessed. And we are attempting to act together, as a collective, so that we might all stand to gain a greater standing among the parent blogosphere. We might even help debunk this preposterous idea that somehow "it takes a mom" to achieve Social Media for Social Good.
We are Deadwood. But we are not dead wood.