Building a Better Safe

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ArtOfManliness.comIn this article we will explore the fine art of finding your safe place. Yes that’s right, even manly men need a safe place they can turn to in times of need. We are, after all, sensitive creatures who have been much maligned all these many years. Throw on a tool belt and the misperception of men being uncaring, unfeeling, and unable to get in touch with their inner selves goes up ten-fold! What a crock! We know how to get in touch with our inner selves…… we just go to our safe place. And just where might that safe place be, you ask? Well it’s different for each and every one of us as you can well imagine.

So what triggers the need to go to our safe place?

The “We” Conversation and The Need For Your Safe Place

Enter the “we” conversation. It’s Friday night. You’ve just finished a hard week at work, things didn’t go quite right, next week is going to be worse, so you’re looking forward to a nice relaxing weekend. You’re thinking you might even catch up on Facebook. Let’s say you have a family member who has obvious brain damage, having chosen the Diamondbacks as his team of choice, and word is internet chatter has been on the rise concerning the manhood of my beloved Dodgers. Well, at least we kicked the Rockies’ asses! Yeah, you’ve got some good material to post.

But then: “Honey , we need to paint the house again.”


“I said we need to paint the house again.”

Relaxing may not now be the right word for this weekend.

“ I was thinking we could get up early and drive around to see what would look good.”

Early? Don’t even get to sleep in?

“And I want to go light and cheerful, something that says summer all year round.”

Two coats of paint minimum, if I’m lucky. And how am I going to fit in fantasy football? I haven’t checked injuries, set my lineup, or talked any smack yet!

This is a purely fictitious conversation and any resemblance to real life is just a coincidence. As it would be if it was, “Honey, we need outside lighting like the Gardners. Have you seen how much nicer their house looks at night?” The “we” word can bring even the gnarliest dude to his knees….. and trigger the need to find his safe place.

The Clever Book Safe Place and How To Build a Book Safe

I have a number of safe places – one of which is behind the cover of a book in the Time Life Books series titled, The Complete Home Repair Manual. You sit down in your comfortable chair, open your book, and in comes Mrs. We.

“What are we reading?”

“Oh, I was thinking about what you said and I’m getting some ideas.”

book safe

Major points, dude. Did you know that an IPad can be like only 7.3” x 9.5” x ½” thick? And a Tab is like 4.7 x 7.5 x ½” as well? That’s not too many pages to cut out in order to get either one of those bad boys in there. You can use a chisel, a box cutter, or whatever. Maybe even line the inside with felt. Be creative – after all, it’s your safe place.

Going to the in laws for the weekend? Bring your safe place with you. I bring War and Peace, or sometimes Dr. Zhivago. Nobody interrupts you if you’re reading books like that.

“Hi Brad, I see you’re reading (insert title here) and I don’t want to interrupt you, but can I get you anything?”

(Manning’s not starting! WTF!) “Well maybe just one beer, that would be great, thanks.” (Out for the season! Seriously?! I think I’ll pick up Fitzpatrick…)

As you can see, a man’s secret, err… safe place is a special place indeed. Some very cool ideas for that safe place can be found at the equally cool Art of Manliness website. So while there’s no “I” in “Team,” there might be a “We” in the “Weekend.” When that happens, go to your safe place.

We have to go now. We have a deadline.

Photo of author

About Brad

Brad Baker is Vice President of Operations at Miller Woodworking in the Los Angeles area, designers and builders of custom cabinetry and interior millwork for the rich and famous. They make the impossible, and their work has been featured in fancy schmantsy architectural glossies more than a few times. All that high end creative stuff aside, he maintains a strong spiritual belief that the real sign of a good woodworker is all 10 fingers. He and his wife Ann Baker co-write for HomeFixated. Ann is CEO of Publicity Pros, a firm that provides “All Things Publicity” services and training for small businesses. She’s a hopeless nerd who revels in anything and everything having to do with the technology of attracting attention. And, no joke, she loves to bake.

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3 thoughts on “Building a Better Safe”

  1. Store valuables in a paint can with your other cleaning supplies/junk. No one would ever steal a paint can that looks 1/2 full on a shelf.


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