In 2007, three middle-aged guys, Fritz Opel, Michael Essrig, and Larry Pollack, started what our wives called a “Bromance.” We came from different backgrounds, had unrelated careers, but suffered from the same malady: Manopause.
We had reached a point in our lives where, despite our success, our great families, and our satisfying careers, we kept asking the famous question that Peggy Lee first asked in her song “Is that all there is?” There was a sense of dissatisfaction, of dreams unrealized, of fearing the signs of aging on the outside while still feeling young on the inside. Manopause. Not like menopause, mind you. No hot flashes and wild mood swings and urges to knit. No, these feelings were more…primitive, more salacious, more…manly.
So, we started our men’s group dedicated to finding adventure, challenges, and some small bit of our youth. Only three rules: no politics, no religion, and no business. We obviously broke the last rule because we started this business.
Now, several other men’s groups we had “sampled” were not really what we had in mind. Some were too touchy-feely, with lots of sobbing and hand-holding, and some were too over the top macho, setting each other on fire and getting penis tattoos.
Our Manopause group was going to be about new experiences, pushing the envelope as far as we could, and trying new and different things. Our goal, as Fritz used to put it, was to have the best stories to tell in the old age home.
The three of us started taking guy trips—to Vegas for gambling and…let’s say dinners, to Deer Valley for skiing and massages and…dinners. While we desperately missed our wives, we realized that traveling with other testosterone flesh bags was easier and, dare I say, less stressful than with the other species.
At the same time, we realized that we each had a common, primordial interest: movies. Fritz worked for Disney for many years and dabbled in script writing. Mike was an actor and owned the Actor’s Center in LA for several years. I wrote screenplays while at UCLA and thought about that as a career before choosing medicine. So here we were, successful in our careers, with a similar dream to be in the entertainment business, and a new-found urge to go where we hadn’t gone before!
That’s how the Manopause.com lifestyle website was born. We wanted a place for men over 50 to bond, to read articles and watch videos about music, movies, travel, sex, sports, and more that were relevant to our lives, to mingle with and talk to other guys going through the same changes, and to have some fun!
We sadly lost Fritz to cancer. He went out like the phoenix, literally. He was cremated, and he told us to spread his ashes wherever this adventure took us. And we did—in Panama, in Deer Valley, Cabo, Uganda, and so many other places. In a sense, he never left us!
So, before you check out for good, check out Manopause.com. Carpe diem you guys! Buckle up and come for the ride!