The 9 Best Ways to Take a Mancation

August 27, 2008

Sometimes it's time to pack up, get out of town, and surf the wave of your own decadent masculinity. When those times come, you need to saddle up for a mancation.

Mancations are an important step in the mandatory deprogramming that a true man of grit must undergo on occasion.  A failure to release the psychological pressure built up in our man-brains by everyday stresses such as bills, your neighbor with that sonofabitch dog, your sonofabitch boss, and Oprah, will result in cataclysmic personal breakdown.  Let me be your guide into the charming Eden of mancation.

Planning your Mancation
Expect to spend the better part of a week on Mancation.  This is the amount of time it takes a typical man-brain to depressurize and begin the upswing into True Leisure.  So plan ahead if you can by taking vacation time, purposefully injuring yourself for health leave, or looking for a new job so that when you quit you'll be set.

Your Mancation Roster
Mancation is a somewhat deceptive moniker as the "man" in mancation is singular.  A solo man-trip, though, is almost always more of a vision quest or clandestine mission.  The nature of a mancation is that of a bonding experience.  More so than grabbing a brew and a ballgame, the mancation is for grappling with the core of you and your friends' beings. Be warned, though, there are those men unfit for mancation.  They include Overly-Married Guy, Pee on a Roadtrip Guy, The Rebounder, and The Poindexter.

Mancation Destinations
Now the meat of it: go somewhere manly, dipsh*t.  But, it's not that simple.  The destination and activities therein must be suitably saturated with masculinity, but should also allow for commune.  You have to be able to talk with, humiliate, drink with, fight with, and otherwise bond in a manly fashion with your brothers in leisure.  Following is a list of acceptable frameworks for such a bonding experience...

9. Shoot a Wild Boar: Texas


Deep in the cockles of your heart is the desire to tame the wild.  It's why you mow the lawn, it's why it's fun to dig a hole, and it's why you'd fish with dynamite (more) if it were legal.  Thrilling though those activities may be, there is another, more feral level to be attained with the slaying of a wild animal that is trying, in theory, to slay you.  Go to Texas, the mailing address of masculinity, and hunt a wild boar.  Tearing out its still-beating heart and taking a bite: optional. 

8. Catch a Sea Creature: The Sea


If taming the land is not for you, take to the sea, friend.  I've been married to it for years, and she is one of the wettest ladies I've known. Not only is fishing wildly dangerous - commercial fisherman are the most likely to die of all our nation's employed men - but it's also wildly fun.  It was good enough for The Old Man (when he was in the sea), and it was good enough for Ahab.  So, bring your mates to her watery bedchambers and start swinging your rods until you smell something fishy and glorious. 

7. Drive Fast: Stunt Driving School


No need to stop for directions at performance driving school. They communicate your instructions over a headset built into your helmet which you have to wear because you're jumping a '73 Rabbit through a burning hoop of doom. Those of you that survive will be rested, recharged, and welded together with the heat of friendship on fire at 150 miles per hour.

6. Master the Skies: Fly a Mig


This is not a joke.  You don't have to have a pilot's license.  You don't even have to know how to drive a car. In order to fly a Russian MiG fighter plane you have to be a person, you have to be alive, and you have to be between the ages of 18 and 70.  But the site says, even then, some exceptions could be made.  Man, it seems like Russia kicks a lot less ass than it used to.  Anyway, you reap the benefits of their sociopolitical devolution THIS time, friend. 

5. Fight a Mountain: and a Yeti


Any pansy can climb a mountain.  And any reasonably fit 10th grader can mount Everest.  But not everybody can complete a 100 miles stage race up Mt. Everest.  Only men of true grit can tackle so monumental a task.  And, like the metamorphic rock you will tread on, you will be irreversibly fused with your mancation roster.  Maybe if you're all thrown into a volcano you'll melt apart.  But the odds are certainly with you. Bonus: combine this and the above mancation by skydiving Everest.

4. Stroke it: Sticks and Stogies


Golfing is almost too hackneyed of a mancation to warrant placement on such a rad list, but not quite.  We, as a gender, have squeezed all we can out of this game, and a few hours on the course with your buddies and the cart girls still does wonders.  One caveat is that you should augment your golfcation with some other, manly bonus activities.  A good example is the stogies and sticks package. Or perhaps you golf, but do it at a Spanish spa.

3. Go South of the Boarder: Tijuana


"Mexico or, as I like to call it, God's blind spot." - American Dad

Tijuana is known far and wide as a dark and sinister place where the sun paradoxically shines hot and clear.  There's all manner of debauchery to be had below the belt of the United States.  Among them are the gruesome spectacle of the bull fight, the tawdry displays of the red light district, or the slightly more refined tastes of the Tijuana Country Club.

2. Drink your Face off: Oktoberfest


Oktoberfest is a festival of Bavarian origin held to celebrate the harvest.  And by harvest, of course, I mean the harvest of saucy, Germanic ladies. While your love machine fueled by delicious, European sausages and beer goes into overdrive.  It would be my suggestion to just fly to Germany.  I don't know any cities there.  I assume all of them would work equally well.  Just fly there and wing it.  Start drinking and dancing.  But, if you're the stuck-up type, you can buy an Oktoberfest package here.

1. Vegas, Baby...Vegas


I can say pretty unequivocally that there is not many more sure ways to damnation than planning a trip to the Crimson City with your buddies. It's one of the few glorious places in this large, glorious nation where you can walk around with a liter of straight liquor and 9 burning cigs hanging out of your mouth and nobody says a damn thing.