Rumpus columnist Thomas Page McBee has just released a new memoir, Man Alive. The new book is, in his words, “basically a prequel” to the Self-Made Man column, and attempts to answer the question “what does it really mean to be a man?” Check out the book that Roxane Gay says “shows us what it takes to become a man who is gloriously, gloriously alive.” McBee will also be at The Strand bookstore in New York City in October....more
Posts Tagged: Thomas Page McBee
Let’s try this again; here’s my throat and a sharp thing....more
Yesterday, Rumpus columnist Thomas Page McBee kicked off his new series, “The American Man,” over at the Pacific Standard. Featuring “gonzo reporting from barber shops, boxing gyms, frat houses, and other bastions of masculinity in an effort to define what makes a modern man,” the writing will also form the basis for McBee’s next book....more
I might inject testosterone every Thursday, but each man here is his own snowflake mix of glory days and Hail Mary second chances....more
I dodge taxis and drunk college kids near Astor Place and think how sweet to be a man in motion on a Saturday night; man formed of needles and a hundred sweaty locker rooms; a man without translation; a man who invents himself....more
The story of the lion and the lamb is itself a blur, as illusory as these hands bare-knuckling a speed bag, faster and faster until all you see is blood and ink so bright it glows....more
I’d rather monkeybar across this subway car than turn away from possibility....more
I need to be here, all skin and beard and elevator heart, where everything happens at once: the people we’ve been and the people we’re becoming creating a weird physics, time bending us toward each other, nine million stories bumping into the night, each of us calling the others home....more
We’re overjoyed to see his immense writing talent has found another place to shine.
Congrats, Thomas, and we look forward to seeing you “refine angles, clarify language, and make stories sparkle.”...more
As I look toward the East River and my teenage summers, I sometimes see my old body continuing on without me, living the slow-and-steady life I’d planned for so carefully and not this spectacular mess I’ve come, I think, to prefer....more
In this new New York, I’m living inside the Serenity Prayer. I say this at brunch and people laugh but I mean it....more
I guess that’s what the dream wants: for me to know that the worst kind of man, the man I was scared of becoming, doesn’t frighten me any more....more
Shortly after yesterday’s bombing at the Boston Marathon, my Twitter feed was thick with Bostonians seeking and sharing information: Copley station was closed, cell lines jammed, marathoners meeting on the Common. People wanted to know where it was safe to go, how to get home, how to find each other....more
Sometimes I get this ragged wind in my chest. It’s a graveyard in there, too: instead of clothes holding my ghost shape, it’s my old self that calls out from beneath bone....more
But what I’ve found as a writer is that every time I thought, everyone’s going to condemn me, everyone’s going call me a slut, or say “How dare you have an abortion,” but the reverse has happened.
On train platforms and slushy sidewalks, I find myself feeling strangely tender toward people bundled up against the cold New England winter....more
I imagined the sour-faced exec watching the video of our conversation and asking the teens why he paid for a bunch of queers to talk about Andy Warhol, and I have to admit, I was INTO IT.
The Rumpus’s Thomas Page McBee, who writes the Self-Made Man column, was recently tapped as a masculinity expert for a focus group conducted by a company looking to market grooming products to men....more
I’ve known what many would call evil: child abuse, a close call with a murderer. I know about other people’s dark impulses, and so I’ve been all the more terrified of my own....more
For our first interview of 2013, we sit down with the incomparable Zadie Smith for a thoughtful chat about identity, the pleasure of reading, and how to write honestly about the state of humanity....more
A tiny preview:
For The Rumpus, you write a column—or essays in installments—entitled Self-Made Man? If you were to write a dictionary entry for “self-made,” what would it say?
I used to believe that collapsing the Venn diagram-space between the public and private self was the best way to ensure authenticity....more
If masculinity could be defined by a quick Google search or a drive down a billboard-studded highway, then a “real man” is a paradox, captured crudely at the uneasy intersections of faith, love, public service announcements, politics, and advertising....more
Binaries are luxuries I can only study clinically; they lost their soothing qualities when I prioritized my reality over yours....more
We are all walking through life as if what mattered most were the symbols of our acquisitions and not the fluttering flags of our hearts....more
I’ve read that book over and over because I think it tells us something brilliant about the slippery nature of monstrosity: that the body is not ever evil; it’s the mind that bends....more
I see sixteen-year-olds now, with their subway chatter and baby fat, and try to imagine the ways they are saving each other’s lives....more
I saw myself, sitting away from the deck and the bottomless beers, listening to crickets and considering the loss of a body in metaphorical terms, drinking out of my own, grown-up Solo cup, me and my many-gendered grief....more
I’m trying to tell you that there’s something steady inside each of us, something unconcerned with expectation or gender or fear. There’s a center, and it’s like a friendly ghost of every person we’ve ever been....more