Caving In

The Beach Boys sing:

“There’s a world where I can go and tell my secrets to, in my room…”

So, guys, here we go.

Quite often, I am asked–this is most often requested of me through comments marked as spam–about the incredible design of my blog. Comments and requests, some more spam, have asked me more questions about design and SEO. I’ll get comments boasting the latest shoe and purse trends, and where these items can be found… for cheap!

Where do you do most of your writing, they [may] ask. In a coffee shop. Why a coffee shop? Because of my not having a separate area to do my writing in. It seems to be a common trend with all of the places that I have lived since college ended: there is no me space. There was my space, which seems to be still putting up a good fight against its inevitable disappearing.  Everyone may presume that the space I comfortably write in is immaculate and fitting for a writer… in essence:  a place that looks like a Gothic Victorian den or at a small table in a pub.

How can I get my creative space working for me?  I have no idea, would be me my reply.  Then, I got to thinking about the concept of a Man Cave, which was a great idea turned sour, but now it’s not looking too shabby.  This isn’t a design blog, so I have no idea on how to put you in the right direction.  All that can be said:  the Man Cave is for you and some of your friends, whose opinions don’t and shouldn’t count since this is your space.

The Tipp Hill apartment, after the six roommates finally became three, had the cozy back room with a fireplace and built-in bookshelves. It was definitely cozy, and I was happy to have taken that over for the rest of my time there. It was a place to write, dream, imagine, sleep (with books in hand or laptop on lap, meditate, and have a place to escape to aside my room.

Me, Myself, and I
Experimental Creativity Afoot

Exactly.  That’s a picture of Me, Myself, and I circa 2009. Yes, I know, I know…

Ed Norton Facepalm

You all didn’t have to really say anything, because it’s been done for you.

When living with the ex the upstairs study with built-in bookshelves, the world’s most comfortable futon, a couple of cats that loved to help out, but no fireplace (since the room’s location is on the second floor), became the place to write. In my previous housing arrangement, the choice was being confided to my room or back to the coffee shops; despite three people living there, there was really only the bedroom I could retreat to; everywhere else was occupied, and the kitchen was half manageable. That’s neither here nor there. Living with my parents, presently, is similar to the middle situation, the meat of the messy sandwich with soggy buns, because I have a few places in the house that I can write in seclusion. It’s nice, but the parents to come and talk to me while I am trying to work, and they return numerous times with new stories, afterthoughts, and after-afterthoughts.

Constant trips to a cafe are always on the agenda.

Yesterday, a trip to the cusp of Leatherstocking Country was made, hitting some breweries and some great food was consumed.  At the Cooperstown Brewing facility, the bathroom contains the necessary wall for a Man Cave bathroom (yes, Man Caves have personal bathrooms).

That’s probably one of the most important parts of the Man Cave:  a bathroom.  If you’re in your own space, you should be able to use a facility close by.  As men, this is a place where all sorts of business is done, and spending as much time on The Can shouldn’t be poo-pooed–pun intended.  If business is to be conducted, phone calls and emails and Skype, and a bathroom atmosphere should be comfortable enough.  Without further ado, here is the bathroom wall of Cooperstown Brewing Company.

Cooperstown Brewing Bathrooom
Cooperstown Brewing Bathrooom

Of course, with having a Man Cave and extra lavatory comes more responsibility.  Sure, dusting these puppies (bottles) off may be a chore on cleaning days, but it will be worth it–after all, a chore is wouldn’t be a chore if it was enjoyable or easy.  We can showcase to our friends on how educated our palate is.  Yes, there is responsibility behind this as well.  If I had a wall for the different kinds of beer that I tried in my life, this wall would have to be bigger.  Variety is the spice of life, and sticking with the same beer is boring (except for Guinness).

Please drink responsibly.  Importantly, please clean responsibility.

Of course, my man cave would look like a library.  There would be a large fireplace and a mantle complete with gargoyles.  Gargoyles would decorate the top ends of bookshelves by the crown molding.  There would be a large television, a bar, and a place to write.  In front of the  fireplace would be two arm chairs, scotch sippin’ and cigar smokin’ chairs.  In between them would be a small table with a chess board; playing chess would be optional.  It would look like something out of Poe’s short stories, or the study/library in the game Clue; in my opinion, the study is inadequate with built-in bookshelves as the library has, but the former does have a secret passage.


Yes, this quaint gargoyle-filled den where spirits and cigars can be enjoyed would have a secret passage way.  The only way to access the other section of the man cave would be… Yeah, like I would tell you…  You may have to put a droplet of scotch into one of the gargoyle’s mouths, or it may be a drop of blood.  Either way, one is a waste of scotch or a waste of blood, but dumb and grotesque enough to keep attempts to a minimal.  A section of the bookshelves would open to a pub.

Similar to the study/library room, the pub would be filled with dark, rich wood.  What would be found, because we’re aiming to be materialistic for this kind of thing:  big screen television(s), surround sound, a large bar and a game area (billiards, foosball, darts).  In the grand scheme of things, this so-called Man Cave will take up an entire basement.

For those who try to enter without permission:  boobytraps.

I'm Shouting!
“I’m shouting, I’m shouting, I’m shout–“

Realistic for the men; not so practical for the women.

However, let’s face it.  We’re men, and we need some time to ourselves.  We just simply want to be left alone in our homes for a non-specific amount of time.  I can assure you that I’d be reading, writing, or meditating; no promises can be made for others.

*     *     *

Final beer notes:

Brewery Ommegang and Butternuts Beer & Ale are two other places we visited.  I am not a huge fan of pumpkin beer, but the styles brewed by Butternuts and Cooperstown were fantastic.  With Butternuts’ pumpkin, the initial taste is an ale, but the pumpkin settles in nicely at the end.  The Cooperstown pumpkin beer is a straight pumpkin beer; there is no nonsense about it.  It tastes like a pumpkin beer without tasting sweet or overwhelming.

Support your local breweries!

Brewery Ommegang
Brewery Ommegang: Adoration
Brewery Ommegang
Brewery Ommegang: Rare Vos
Butternuts' Pork Slap
Butternuts’ Pork Slap

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