I’ve been listening to the soundtrack of The Greatest Showman every day lately cause my kids are HOOKED on singing along in the car.
Today the song This Is Me came on, after I dropped them off, and I sat and listened as I drove to work.
I am brave, I am bruised
I am who I’m meant to be, this is me
Look out ’cause here I come
And I’m marching on to the beat I drum
I’m not scared to be seen
I make no apologies, this is me.
It got me thinking – who am I? Who do I fight to be? How do people see me?
Lately, I’ve been doing a lot of thinking on what I want Mind of Modern Man to be. My true feeling was for it to be a small slice of a guy in his 40s living life – sharing it with others in the same spot. But the more I ruminate about it – the more I realize my stories aren’t just for us – the 40-year-old guys. These stories can give a hint of what could come for all you folks still in your 20s and 30s. It could be a fond look back on life’s moments for those of you in your 50s, 60s and 70s. It’s for the men as much as it is for women. These stories can be universal when you get straight down the real meaning behind any of them.
I’ve been writing here on Mind of Modern Man for almost two years now, and anyone reading my stuff (who isn’t related to me- HI MOM!) may have learned a little bit about me that they didn’t know, but they only know what I’m choosing to put out there. What I’m daring to share. They know the Modern Man version of Keith. They can read on our About Us page that I have some kids, I live on a farm, I was a TV critic, I love Star Wars and the New York Yankees.
But beyond that .. who am I? Well, I thought I’d share a little bit more. These are a lot of the pieces that make me who I am. It’s a stream of thought, but ones that may shed a little more light on the guy you’ve taken a leap of faith on and decided to read about.
I’m a Dad. Since I was little I knew that’s why I was put on this earth. I’m not always great at it – I’m learning every single day. But I’m here. I’m present and I’d honestly lay down my life for any of the three of those kids. They are my life and I will spend every remaining day (for a long time) showing them how much they mean to me.
I’m a husband. I don’t own exotic foreign property, have a fancy car, stocks and bonds in major play to support my family and my wife – but what I do have is my enormous heart and soul. I am the support system that I believe we all need. My wife amazes me every single day with her drive and ambition. While she’s leading the charge, she knows whenever she turns to the side she’ll see me standing right there next to her, helping to carry the load.
What else? What other puzzle pieces make up this guy? Let me peel back some more layers.
I cry easy, I’m an emotional wreck when something hits me just right. I’ve been dealing with being overweight almost my whole life – and I’m not very good at it – but I really am getting better.
I hate horror movies or anything with gratuitous sex, nudity and drug use. (Yeah, you won’t find me watching Game of Thrones) “Drug comedies” bore me to tears. I love cheesy RomComs and silly simple TV comedies.
I’d rather sit and have an intelligent conversation for hours, than play video games, gamble or go to a concert. I’m a true meat and potatoes guy who also loves Mexican food – keep your curry-based stuff away!
I’d rather spend a week at Disney World than travel to a foreign country and I’d rather be almost anywhere else than on the beach.
I sing show tunes at the top of my lungs in the car just as easily as banging my head to Welcome to the Jungle or Enter Sandman. I was always picked last in gym class but I have a nasty jump shot in hoops, play a mean second base in softball and I’m an Ultimate Frisbee genius. They just never knew.
I had crushes on some amazing females in my life and they never knew – I was THE shyest extrovert you would have ever met. Pretty sure Mr. Cellophane may have been written about me.
And even without clucking like a hen
Everyone gets noticed, now and then
Unless, of course, that person it should be
Invisible, inconsequential me
I LIVED for band in high school and college and haven’t touched my trombone since I left college. Truth is, I don’t miss it at all. Speaking of – I was WAY too immature to survive college and was nicely asked to not return for my Junior year – not sure I ever went to a class in the two years I was there. Not cause I was doing anything silly or stupid – I just slept, ate, was on the radio, played Wiffle Ball and worked my on-campus job. I was too young to realize the weight of not doing what I was there to do! It may be the biggest regret in my life.
I was HORRIBLE at money management. After I left school I immediately went into Corporate America and worked my way up from temp to manager level with some major international companies. I made a lot of money and spent even more. I just never learned the responsibility of it till WAY late in my life. I take back college – not controlling my money is the BIGGEST regret of my life.
I like hiking. I don’t like fishing or camping. I was a Boy Scout. I played little league, biddy basketball and many seasons of soccer. I don’t get lacrosse at all and never had any interest in football. I could sit and watch hours and hours of minor league baseball cause I love the sport, but I root for the NFL only as something fun to have to talk about with others.
I have friends that have dealt with unimaginable tragedies in their lives and I always offer a shoulder, ear or some positive turns of phrase – but, honestly – I never really know how to act or what to say to these people in their time of need. I just try to show up.
I’m the funny guy people turn to, to keep things light. I’m the cheesy RomCom you turn on when life is a bit too hard and you want to escape. A little secret – I hide away my heavy moments and tend to keep them to myself – probably not the best idea, but it’s who I am.
I am VERY awkward in a major social setting. As a TV Critic I would, from time to time, find myself chatting socially with major TV stars (Jerry Seinfeld and Tina Fey may be my all time favorite conversation I ever found myself in.). I was more comfortable with them, then I am at a party with friends of friends. With the celebrities, they just want something normal – that’s me. In a social peer party scene – everyone wants someone ab-normal. It’s a very strange phenomenon.
I am the KING of fake it till you make it. You don’t go from Temp to Manager without some of that. You don’t get cast in major roles in plays and musicals. You don’t become a TV critic working out of your small farm cottage. You don’t find yourself sharing a beer with Seinfeld and Tina Fey. You don’t find yourself as a weekly guest on a the #1 radio show in CT to talk about pop culture and TV. You don’t find yourself creating a blog as an influencer… yet, here I am.
I’ve been blessed with an amazing life. I’ve seen the ball drop on New Years in Times Square. I’ve performed at Disney World, NFL half-time shows, and for Presidents. I’ve seen the Rose Bowl Parade in Pasadena. I’ve traveled across the US and visited Europe. I get to live on a farm. I’ve created my own brand of who I am in the business world. I have an AMAZING family via blood and an incredible one from life. My life-long friends are a driving force to keep me true to who I am.
All these pieces add up and then… this is me. Today anyway. Let’s see what tomorrow brings.