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Meredith Holt, Published March 15 2014

Fargo woman's book project shares male wisdom

FARGO – “Bacon is my life.”

Sounds like something you’d see on a T-shirt, but it’s one of 100 quotes Darcy Simonson is including in her new book project, “Hisdom Wisdom.”

But there’s more to Paul Neis’ quip than his professed love of bacon, the Fargo-based writer, artist and entrepreneur explains.

“When he says, ‘Bacon is my life,’ he’s not actually saying ‘Bacon is my life,’ ” she says. “He’s saying, ‘I’m going to live my life full throttle, I’m not going to worry about whether I’m going to live to be 100 years old; I’m going all out, and I’m going to enjoy my life while I’m here.’ ”

Some off-the-cuff, some profound, the quotes come from a mix of celebrity and “everyday” men, each one influential in a contributor’s life.

In “Hisdom Wisdom: Humorous, Profound and Unconventional Wisdom From the Minds and Mouths of Men,” which doesn’t yet have a release date, Simonson will write a reflection on each quote and organize them into six categories: Character, Relationships, Work, Growing Up, Spirituality and Death.

She’ll explore their meaning, intent, impact, how they can be put to use in day-to-day life, and why they should be.

Simonson, 51, got the idea from a conversation between her boyfriend, Joffre Proano, and her then-13-year-old son, Cole, while on vacation in Colorado, from which the first hisdom was born: “A boy becomes a man when he can own up to his farts.”

“Does a boy become a man when he can own up to his own farts?” she writes. “There may be a lot more to growing up than that, but what Joffre taught Cole through his wise but silly words is that telling the truth, even when it isn’t comfortable to do so, says a lot about someone.”

As she started developing the concept, Simonson realized she needed to shift her focus from the “yin” (the feminine) to the “yang” (the masculine).

Simonson grew up with all sisters and has spent almost a decade working primarily with women on personal growth through her various business ventures, most recently Insights With Darcy.

“Looking back over my life, some of the most tender moments and insightful wisdoms I recall have come from men,” she writes in her overview. “It pains me to think (as I wake up and open my heart to the whole picture), that many men appear not to know how valuable their contribution is to creating a balanced and beautiful world, or how influential their masculine perspectives can be.”

Most of the “Hisdom” entries come from women – daughters, sisters, wives and mothers – who have been particularly affected by the words of the men in their lives.

“It’s harder than I thought it would be because men don’t realize their own wisdom,” she says.

Cole, now a 15-year-old freshman at Fargo’s Oak Grove Lutheran School, helped his mom choose a few hisdoms for her book.

Two of his picks come from members of the infamous “27 Club,” late musicians Jimi Hendrix and Kurt Cobain.

“Jimi Hendrix said, ‘When the power of love overcomes the love of power, the world will know peace.’ I like that one a lot,” Cole says. “I think it’s kind of relevant in today’s world.”

Have a ‘hisdom’?

If you have a piece of “hisdom” from an influential man in your life you’d like to share with author Darcy Simonson, email her at darcysimonson@me.com.

Readers can reach Forum reporter Meredith Holt at (701) 241-5590