Sir Edmund Hillary did not climb Mt. Everest "because it was there". No, that is a common misconception. He climbed it because he needed time away with some dudes. Maybe he had some kids back home, ages 2 and 4, that kept stomping on his balls. Maybe he couldn't take anymore Project Runway and long conversations with his wife about their financial future. . Maybe he thought that if he climbed up to where the air was thin, he could understand the plot of LOST. I don't really know. But I do know is that he went to some dudes and said "Let's play dress up and do something manly." So they did.
It is in that vain that I ventured to the 3rd annual Hoss weekend that was being held 10 hours away. And I was able to talk Papa Scrum into coming with me. He makes one hell of a car companion. Good on the conversation and low on the bodily functions.
But there is a theme for man weekend. It's not just show up and talk about sports and women. That would be boring and very not funny and it turns out we are a very funny bunch. Previous themes of Hoss Weekend have included the Dirty Stach and the Handlebar Stach (click here for last years post). What else is there to do? The Amish. That's right, Amish. Because if you have never wanted to wear an Amish beard, then you are just letting life pass you by and I pity you.
For three long months I grew my beard out. Day in and day out, it grew. I charted my success by my wife's comments. First it was "that's cute." Which lead to "you are getting poofy." Evolving to "there's a dead squirrel hanging around your face." And finally ended up "I can see actual dirt in your beard. Don't touch me." It was time to shave into the Amish.
14 of us showed up near a lake in small town Texas. It was a 10 hour trip for Papa Scrum and I. There may have been some heavy petting involved, it was a long car trip. But we made it.
We were a diverse bunch. In fact, we were the melting pot of America. We had a Philippine guy, a gay dude, and a short man. If I ever do get a TV show, that's going to be the name of it. Short Gay Philly. Fantastic. Now it was made very clear that we all had to grow beard to prove our manhood and then cut them into the Amish theme. However, some men, and I won't name names, can't grow a beard if you dipped them in human growth hormone. So they had to wear fake beards. We take our funny very seriously.
I'm sure by now you are assuming the worst when thinking of 14 guys alone by the lake. I'm sure that you are thinking we would talk about women and fart alot. Those parts are true. But we are more than just that. We also talked about sports. And although I cannot recount all the conversations that we had, I will tell you that the terms "winking butthole" and "I like white cock" were thrown in there.
But the big event of Hoss Weekend is the group picture. That's right, we actually go out in public. Otherwise, whats the point of all the dress up. We take a group photo at Walmart because you know, where else can you be a little WT? For some reason, we feel that making a public spectacle of ourselves is in order for a complete man weekend experience.
So Papa Scrum and I put on our Amish garb and the rest of the group ventured out into public. Papa Scrum I think went fancy Amish while I was sporting what I call country Awesome Amish. Red Suspenders complete with a straw hat that I let Little Hoss bedazzle. I don't know of any law that says that the Amish can't be fabulous, Johnny Weir style.
It's interesting the looks we get when we get out. The fake beards, the bedazzled hats and the suspenders tend to draw a lot of looks. But we took the group photo and believe me, it's awesome. Some people tend to give us a good 15 feet radius, never trying to make eye contact. Some people just flat out stare, and some actually talked to us. A couple actually believed we were real Amish and asked us what a barn raising actually was (we confessed that we weren't devout Amish, only weekenders.)
Following the picture we go out to eat at a restaurant because our weekend isn't really complete unless we either freak out a waitress or terrorize some poor family out for Saturday brunch.
Oh, and I almost forgot to mention, we drink. A lot. This is also the part of the year that we realize that we are getting older and older and perhaps cannot hang as well as when we were 21. Sure, we still may be awesome at Beer Pong and a little group game called Flip Cup, but it turns out the "bounce back" factor is greatly reduced once you are married and have children. We lost 2 members who claimed "stomach virus" and we let that slide until we could make fun of them out of ear shot. Pretty soon we are sure that Man Weekend will turn into Man Brunch followed by a three day nap.
The weekend ended with a healthy dose of Advil and water as Papa Scrum and I got back into our car for the return trip home. 10 hours hung over is not as fun as you would think it would be in car.
I got home to my loving wife and our two children. It appears that while I was away, my kitchen was rearranged, my daughter got a makeover, and I was looking at a new 400 dollar bed redecoration that I'm pretty sure we never talked about. I went to my calendar and marked the last weekend of February for 2011. Maybe we should do this twice a year.