Expect this post to be somewhat scattered. For the past few weeks, I’ve been reeling around the idea of starting some sort of group, club, camp or some other establishment for boys and fathers. This is so far the outcome – a very upside down mind.
After Go-Ruck is about when it began. I know this will sound like some kind of ad or otherwise, a paid-for review but the Challenge awakened something inside of me, and I haven’t really been the same since. Almost like I unlocked a part of my connectedness to my true human form, the Challenge presented me with the opportunity to push through mental blocks I hadn’t really been faced with before. Similar to Jiu Jitsu, but different. That too has changed – my participation in Jiu Jitsu since the Challenge. It’s better and somehow more a part of the regimen to keep my flighty mind in check.
After the Challenge, I started to piece together a few things. One, that we’ve come too far perhaps from the struggles that got us here and two, that men (though, I’m starting to believe it might just be me, personified through ‘men’) have become disenfranchised by a world that offers too little adventure.
I started to patch together some ideas; a group or assembly that would meet on one-off occasions to do the things with worthwhile, meaningful outcomes. Baking bread, hiking, lifting, fighting, gardening, observing plants and wildlife, sitting quietly, exploring, creating art, making things and experiencing food and drink the way it aught to be – not just devoured as a thing to be done, but really savored. I’ve gone far in this too, even so much as putting hundreds of words down (here, if you wanted to see what I’m getting at) in a formal business plan. Branding, the plotting of being a ‘social enterprise’ and financial prospecting included. Why? To justify some way of living or to pass on knowledge?
In conversation with my wife today, she had a very valuable insight. A lot of the things I’m involved in are mostly devoid of meaning. Sure, there’s the ovbious – I need to work so that I can have the stuff I have and provide for my family, both extended and nuclear. I need to have food and water and the means of survival as the ‘animal Bill’ if you will, but on the heirarchy, it seems very simple to live on those premises alone with only peripheral exposure to the rawest experiences we can muster. I’ll go to work a whole year if it means I can have another 12-hour ruck march through downtown Toronto, but when will I summit Mount Washington or take an entry level tactical carbine course?
The scales are out. The balance is off. There’s too much Reddit, fluorescent lighting and panel-hosted news shows. There’s too many vibrating notifications, sales pitches and manicured lawns. Somewhat adolescent of me I suppose, to be all anti-system as I write a blog post, trying to hash this out, on my Macbook. I get it.
I don’t know where this mindset is going, but definitely feel like I’m rounding some sort of proverbial corner. I don’t know if generating a lifestyle brand is the way this will manifest itself, or if a solo-camp will clear my head, but something is changing. I’m missing adventure. I’m craving real, genuine experiences. I’ll take that and mold it into something – maybe a trip, or more blog posts. Maybe just another cup of tea, silently steeping while my dogs sleeps the day away and I spend a few moments just thinking.
Whoa, scattered eh?