Thursday, June 28, 2007

"Don't Dress Your Cat in an Apron!"*

When I was little, everybody called me a tomboy. A phrase I found utterly ridiculous, but I loved sports and playing in the mud, so that's what I was called. I never really felt like it fit me because I loved dolls, loved making outfits for my dolls. While it's true that I have always hated pink, that I can flip a fence in no time flat, and got in several fist fights as a child, does that really make me a tomboy? Just because I don't like to wear makeup, I prefer pants to skirts (except in the summer) and hate to shop, am I mannish? I loved having my hair long, wearing those 80's barrettes with the ribbons and beads hanging down. Aren't those things girly!?Then when my son came along and he loved barbies, tea parties, and playing dress up, he was criticized for being girly. He hated (and still hates) ball sports. Some people told me by allowing that kind of behavior he was going to grow up gay. (Is that a bad thing?) He'd hate that I told you those things though so we'll keep it a secret, especially now that he loves all things musical and scientific. When will they come out with an iBeaker?Now my daughter is that special dichotomy of girly and sporty. Thanks to Mia Hamm, the WNBA and things like that, I don't think they'd call her a tomboy anymore, just active. Now I wonder if the stigma falls on the girly-girls. Are there girls out there that only want to play with dolls? That hate all sports because they don't want to get their dresses dirty? I know there are boys out there that fit into that ultra-macho boy thing. I've spoken with people that won't let their boys play with dolls or kitchen sets, but I wonder if there are parents who don't let their girls play with trucks.If you are one of these people, WHAT THE HELL IS WRONG WITH YOU!!!??? Kids should get to play with nice safe toys that make them happy. If a girl likes a basketball, by gum give her a basketball. If a boy wants to play Barbies let him play. I have serious doubts that when asked why he went on a serial killing spree the serial killer said the reason he killed all of those people is that his parents let him play house when he was little. More likely it was that he desperately wanted to and everybody told him he was wrong or bad for wanting it and. . . . I don't know. . . . ironed his hands and said "Here you want to play house, I'll let you iron!"I personally feel that as a "tomboy" I gained insight into the male psyche and was able to understand the male brain much more than my more feminine counterparts. To this day my male friends will say something along the lines of "Well you get it why doesn't she?"So I guess my point is to let your girls play with trucks and your boys play Barbies (if they want too). The world would be a much better place.

*For the charlatans that didn't get the title

Don't Dress Your Cat In An Apron (from Free to Be You and Me)
Dan Greenburg

Don't dress your cat in an apron
Just `cause he's learning to bake.

Don't put your horse in a nightgown
Just `cause he can't stay awake.

Don't dress your snake in a muu-muu
Just `cause he's off on a cruise.

Don't dress your whale in galoshes
If she really prefers overshoes.

A person should wear what he wants to
And not just what other folks say.

A person should do what he likes to
A person's a person that way.


Jane said...

...and my friend William wants A DOLL!!!

La Sirena said...

And "Atalanta", for she was a clever girl, as well as a swift runner.

See, Iain is like Young John from the town with his globes and geology studies. Remember, at the end of the day they were friends.

Nice post, Liza Jane.

Woodlandmama said...

I hated Atalanta. I always fast forwarded through that one. "That was young John from the village!" Woodlandmama mocks with a silly voice: "I only ran the race so I could have a chance to talk with you." "Oh, Young John from the village, I would like nothing more than to spend the day talking with you."