When Good Men Do Bad Things

When Good Men Do Bad Things

“Do you trust yourself?” the therapist asked me a few months back. I considered the question. “It depends,” I admitted after a long pause.

It seems axiomatic to me that good people do bad things, selfish things, stupid things, ignorant things. Some of what’s happened with the #metoo movement is proof positive of this, at least those cases that aren’t about rape, assault, or a gross abuse of power (and expectations of immunity).

So what happens when a good person does a bad thing?

* Published by "The Good Men Project"

Fiction: A Difficult Case

Fiction: A Difficult Case

When Eckart Tolle's "The Power of Now" came out, I was struck by the introduction, where he says, "...a time came when ... I had no relationships, no job, no home, no socially defined identity. I spent almost two years sitting on park benches in a state of the most intense joy...."

I wondered what would have happened if he had been picked up by city services and taken to a psych ward for evalution, and this story was born. 

* First published in 2009, in "The Mysterious Divination of Tea Leaves" (John Hunt Publishing) 

Treat Your Creativity Like a Blue-Collar Job

Many aspiring writers view their creativity through a lens of sacredness or specialness or inspiration. As in, “This is my sacred craft,” or, “I’m an important person, a special person, and I have something important to share with the world," or, "I need to cultivate my inspiration."

This is the kind of self-important chatter that will leave you with writer’s block so thick it feels like a 2-ton rock sitting on your chest. 

The Man Who Stood in the Corner

The Man Who Stood in the Corner

People know me these days as a pretty outgoing guy who enjoys parties, has given more than a few public readings of his books, and recently split his pants dancing at a friend’s wedding. I have a successful business that has me putting myself out there in dozens of ways every month, from webinars to chatting with strangers.

But things weren’t always this way. 

* Published in "The Good Men Project" 

The Trouble with Men

The Trouble with Men

As a culture, we've moved squarely into the post-feminist era. Talk of "male privilege" has become common, and things like Goddess circles, women-only power groups and organizations, period parties, and a reclaiming of the objectification of women's bodies are more and more common.

But there's an elephant in the room, and he has a penis. 

* First published in 2015, in Elephant Journal 

The Future of Art & Art Criticism

The Future of Art & Art Criticism

Art struggles in our postmodern world, where genius has been pronounced dead and mediocrity and irony congratulate one another on their empty existence. A trip to a modern museum of art leaves most of us scratching our heads in confusion.

Cutting-edge art and literature have lost their power over our collective imaginations because they can no longer speak for us in any meaningful way. Art has become an inside joke about an inside joke that fewer and fewer people are interested in hearing. Here's where it might all be heading.