Here's the thing: I'm in my 40s.
Fine, goddammit, I am well into my 40s.
I have a family. I have a job. I also have a second job.
I have a second job because I also have three teenage sons who are capable of eating the equivalent of the Gross Domestic Product of a small to moderate agrarian nation. Beyond that, there are other rapidly mounting expenses that seem to increase daily, so I took a second job. Because I am a responsible adult male.
I also work out six days a week, and have been doing so for a year and a half now. Being in my 40s, I realized not long ago that if I hit my 50s weighing in at close to 400 pounds, I was doomed to a short and achy life, with various bits constantly failing, breaking, or, God forbid, falling off. So I made some changes. Because I am a responsible adult man. The fact that I have now spent a year and a half being sore is a small price to pay, even if the monthly gym fee is not.
So, let's recap: I have a family. I have a mortgage. I have two vehicles that need to be paid for and maintained. I do home improvement. Badly. But at least our house now has two bathrooms. Because, as I will say for a third time (to help you remember), I am a responsible adult man. Pretty typical. Nothing really special. One of thousands, if I'm being honest.
The problem with all of that is that I am also a nerd. Not the flaming version that is so popular on TV and in movies. I am smart but not a genius. I love certain areas of pop culture, but I rarely obsess over them. I have never participated in a debate regarding the merits of Patrick Stewart vs. William Shatner (lasting more than fifteen minutes). I love music, but have never worried very much about the names and personal histories of the members of my favourite bands. I love movies, but have never... okay, I do tend to obsess over actors and directors, but I still have friends who've forgotten more about film than I will ever know. I love fantasy and science fiction, but have never travelled hundreds of miles to attend a convention (though that would be awesome), and have no interest in standing in a long line and paying $50 to shake hands and get the autograph of Stan Lee. Don't get me wrong, if I ran into Stan out on the street somewhere I would totally love to buy him a beer and hang for awhile, but paying money so I can get his name on a piece of paper and maybe a photo of him with his arm around my shoulder, pretending we're best buds? It kind of seems demeaning to both of us. Me and Stan.
Now, just to be clear, I'm not saying all this to slag off people who are into all those things. To be honest, I've always had a bit of an inferiority complex when it comes to my friends and my place in the nerd pecking order. Over the years I've come to terms with the fact that other people in my social circle are either more knowledgeable than I am about most topics, or they're at least more willing to work at memorizing names, facts, and figures, whether that refers to baseball stats, what year a certain album was released, or the cast list of AMC's The Walking Dead.
What is my point? Why a blog now? Those questions and others will be answered (or rambled on about) in the next post. This upcoming post, by the way, is already written, but having posted various essays and short fiction in internet forums before, I think that really long posts are kind of overwhelming. Nobody wants to surf over to a page and then spend the next fifteen minutes reading a long-ass rant, so I've broken up this lengthy preamble into digestible segments. Because I care about you. And because I want you to keep reading. I have things to say. And I promise, there is a point to all this, which I will make clear very soon. And then, once the foundation is laid, I will be able to get on with the actual purpose of this blog. So check in again soon.