Real Men Don’t Apologize - Jim Belushi
By Pamela Mortimer
It must have been tremendously difficult to live in the shadow of John Belushi, comic legend. Even worse to have suffered the immense pain and grief of his death while being stalked by the tabloids and ever other media parasite on the face of the earth. But Jim Belushi has overcome his trials and tribulations to become a “beloved international superstar of stage and screen”. True, he made some movies that didn’t quite make it to the Oscars (I will not apologize for liking K-9!) but he has risen to the top on his own merit, currently with his hit TV show, According to Jim. In this book, Jim confesses that there were times when he was, well, a complete, um, jerk. Actually, he calls himself a loser (formerly, of course).
But now, that’s all changed. Over the years, with the help of his loved ones, particularly his pal Stevie B., Jim Belushi has become a man. A real man. And as the title so proudly announces, “Real Men Don’t Apologize”. Ah, but it’s not what you think.
First off, let me just say that, yes, I know this is a book for guys. And I’m not a guy. Now that the obvious is out of the way, I have to say that I think this book could be a valuable learning tool for women, as well. Besides, and no one I know is going to argue with me, Jim Belushi is just plain damn funny.
Belushi is also unpredictably insightful. He makes a crack about people being surprised that he’s educated. Using all of this wit and wisdom, he has written a book that is more or less a complete guide to life for men. One of the main things he stresses – and this is most likely where the title comes from – is that you, as a man, should never apologize…for who or what you are.
Belushi’s first assignment from his mentor, Stevie B, was to make a list of agreements with himself. These are known as “Terms”. Terms are the things you wouldn’t give up even if you had to kill for them. Things such as work, honesty, integrity, respect, etc. Each of us has a set of beliefs, of values, of things we wouldn’t give up even if it meant missing the Super Bowl. (In Belushi’s case, that may only apply if the Bears aren’t in the playoffs.) If you don’t maintain those values, then what have you become? Not a man, that’s for sure. Just ask Mike Ditka.
According to Belushi, there are three people you need to be like to be a real man: Clint Eastwood, Gandhi, and Curly. Self-explanatory.
Belushi offers a variety of multiple choice quizzes to determine what state of manliness you’re in…or not. (Hint: The answer is not always “C”.) Situations covered are: What not to do/say during an argument with your girl/wife; How to deal with hair loss; What to say to friends whose wives want to give their sons “girly” names; How to know if you’re ready to date (you’re not); and many other important lessons you need to know if you don’t want to wake up alone or get the tar beat out of you for being a total idiot.
One very important aspect of manliness covered in this book is that of boundaries. This applies to women, as well. If you set boundaries, then let them be broken, it’s your own stupid fault if you end up spending “couple time” at a sushi bar with your girl’s best friends (whom you hate). Oh, did I mention that the game’s is on while you’re trying to figure out how to get enough sake in you so that the friends will seem interesting? Good luck with that.
There’s a lot to learn from this book. But Belushi doesn’t leave you hanging. And, no matter how rotten and pathetic you might think your life is, how unmanly you are, you need to hear the trials and tribulations of Jim’s friend, Paul. You’ll feel like the king of the world. Unless you, too, gave up a golden opportunity to have sex because you peed on yourself in her bathroom and felt the need to run out of the apartment.