One of the easiest ways to become crunchy, aside from the normal baby-related entry-points (cloth diapers, wooden toys, baby wearing) is to simply just start making something yourself. Making something yourself is called DIY or ‘Do It Yourself’.
DIY is all about taking back control from The Man. The Man who makes everything we’ll ever need for us so that we can buy it from him (and usually pay for said stuff with money that we made working for him). It’s a closed system.
The Man knows what he’s doing.
This is why being a little bit crunchy puts you on the no-fly list. You’re learning self-reliance. Self-reliance is frowned upon by large corporations.
YOU: “What? DIY? I’ve never heard of this.”
YOU: “No seriously, I live in a cave in the desert with no WiFi.”
ME: “Well you could be hot-spotting off your cell recep-”
YOU: “No! No cell reception, no hotspot, no Internet.”
ME: “Then how are you reading this right now?”
YOU: (guilty face)
ME: “Exactly, you did know about DIY, but instead you are lazy and choosing HODI (Have Others Do It).”
Don’t worry, that’s normal. Most people don’t make stuff. Making beds doesn’t count, nor does helping your kid with their crafting homework. And don’t say you ‘made’ a webpage because that’s digital, and signing up for a square space or bluehost doesn’t count for anything. MAYBE if you coded the website yourself from a blank text editor page, then YES, let’s say you MADE something. But that doesn’t make you crunchy.
That makes you a nerd.
No, you have to make something real, in the real world, yourself. Women commonly tackle such projects as knitting, baking, churning butter. Even preparing a home-cooked meal from scratch makes you stand out these days as a beacon of crunchiness.
And there are now so many Manly DIY options for husbands to try, like making your own wooden toys and furniture (don’t judge the skill-level, plunger handles are a cornerstone of civilized society) or even your own beer! Yes, now we get down to the subject at hand.
Beer-making has really taken off. You can buy whole kits to do it at home, even pre-made mixes of ingredients that mimic your favorite microbrew (just to help you learn before you start making up your own genius creations).
On a visit back to Oregon, a friend of mine had me try an IPA he had brewed; it was really good. He then walked me through the entire process in his garage: five gallon buckets, rubber hoses, some kind of measuring thing, temperatures, time-tables, bottling, recipe cycles, cold storage, calendaring flavors…
Let’s just say that by the time I got through it all, I felt like I needed another beer. Which brings me to my personal conclusion:
Some stuff is just better off being made by other people.
Even if “other people” means “The Man.”
Feeling manly? Want to make your own beer? Try this kit:
NEXT WEEK, ON THE CRUNCHY DUNGEON: