*Just wanted to say thank you to all the Pax who came out Tuesday night.  You men made it a great night.  Special thanks to Wendell Gee for planting the seed and pushing this event forward (and penning the money pre-blast below), for Friar Tuck and FNG IPTAY for sharing their thoughts and insights with the Pax, and for White Shoe for locking down the location. For those who couldn’t be with us Tuesday, please touch base with me anytime to share your thoughts, ideas, comments and questions about the 3rd F.  Look forward to seeing some 3rd F opportunities start rolling out soon.

Aye – Fazio

Tuesday, November 12
Tyler’s Taproom, Seaboard Station
6 PM until

They call it the “Third F” for a reason.

Most of us wouldn’t feel comfortable walking into roomful of complete strangers at Tyler’s Taproom to explore issues of faith.  We’d be asking ourselves, “Who are these people?”  “They don’t even have nicknames.”  “How can I get out of this?”  That’s normal.  Discussions about faith can be very personal.  You ask hard questions and you learn a lot about the people in the room.  They learn a lot about you.  For those who don’t regularly talk about faith—much less with other men—it can be downright scary.

Kind of like an F3 workout.  For most FNGs, the first workout is a tough one.  It’s hard to sleep the night before because you don’t really have any idea how badly it’s going to hurt.  The workout usually lives up to its billing.  You didn’t have to discuss the concept of God, your place in the universe, or any code of ethics.  Just burpees and dips and something about “Mary” – and dying for the Q to say “halt!”  You may take a week to recover, and your wife may make fun of you for hobbling around the house.

But you keep coming back and, gradually, a fellowship slowly takes hold.  You get up close and personal with partner carries.  You see some of the veterans jog to the back to help those falling behind.  Some guy named “Money Hose” strikes up a conversation with you – asks if you know the history behind the establishment of Pullen Park.  You help “clap ‘em in” – or maybe you get clapped in (like Sweeper Boy and I got clapped in at the GOAT).  You quickly realize that, regardless of speed or strength, there is a bond among those who circle up in a pitch dark park at 545 to do this to themselves with no promise of pizza or beer at the finish line.

Then there is a short time in the circle of trust.  The faces get more familiar each time you trod into the park.  Tarp.  Cinderella.  Country Wide.  T-Square.  There are prayer requests that people share.  And even if you can’t ever squeeze in the time for coffee (like me), you linger a little longer after the workout, you e-mail another member of the PAX to go to lunch, you talk junk on Twitter.

So, now, walking into Tyler’s Taproom on Tuesday, November 12 to discuss the Third F launch is easy.  It’s no roomful of strangers.  It’s the PAX.  And as with any First F workout, there’s no need to worry about what kind of spiritual shape you may be.  There are not going to be bible quizzes.  You don’t need to be a churchgoer.  You don’t even have to have a “religion” that you call you own.  The Third F forum is simply an arena to have an open discussion and exploration of faith, how it relates to our day-to-day lives and how it shapes us as men striving to be better husbands, fathers, professionals, and people.

This first gathering is to talk about what the Third F forum may look like going forward.  We’ll develop some suggestions, solicit others, and talk about a Third F model that can attract and sustain however many are interested.  Like anything else, it will be developed, led, and improved by the PAX. Like HH events, food and drink are on your own tab (see Rain Man for tax write-off potential), but there’s no additional cost and no further commitment on your part – just come willing to share your thoughts and ideas. And yes, there will be plenty of Second F to enjoy.

Seating is limited, so please post your HC (hard commit) below to reserve your spot. If you don’t yet have the ability to post, shoot an email to Floppy Disk (tomneal@nc.rr.com) and have him set you up.  Look forward to seeing you there.

– Wendell Gee