This is a wild and woolly world we live in, folks, and times (as some old geezer once sang in a pot-induced haze) they are a’changin. There’s the good: we can elect a kinda-black president and gays are kinda allowed to almost marry. There’s the bad: Republicans are still allowed to vote, religious fundies are allowed to reproduce, and rabidly conservative transgendered pitpulls (and ps – please go away, Anne Coulter) are allowed to speak in public. There’s the cool: hybrid and electric autos are puttering Jetson-style down the road, Apple continues to litter the techscape with pretty but sometimes useless new gadgets like the iPad, and, thanks to ever-better wireless internet technology, I can download important web documents (P-O-R-N) in the time it takes to think a dirty thought.
All in all, this change thing? It’s good. I’m all for it. Well, except for the voting Republicans, reproducing fundies, and idea-spouting gender-indeterminate proto-hominid conservative mouthpieces.
I consider myself a pretty modern and with-it guy, readily embracing the systematic dismantling of traditional gendered roles of this modern society. Like my forefathers, I can change a flat tire and fix leaky plumbing (though we’ll conveniently forget that my idea of ‘fixing’ plumbing is copious amounts of crazy glue, which leaves the cabinet beneath my old kitchen sink with more stalactites and stalagmites than Lechuguilla cave). I can grunt and sweat and lift heavy things, take out the trash, and do manly things. I swear so often my damned parrot has a filthy mouth, and I believe MMF fighting, boxing, and hockey are like the greatest sports ever (nevermind the fact they all include sweaty and sometimes mostly naked men viciously bashing each other).
But on the flip-side, I can turn around and vacuum the house, hem my own pants, and make the perfect foo-foo coffee beverage. I’m an excellent decorator. When and if a kid come into the picture, I’ll coddle that precious little gayby with all the sweetness and cutesy-pukey affection in the world. When Lee is finally done with school and heading off to a real job in the mornings, I’ll make his coffee and iron his clothes.
And, as if all that’s not enough to convince you I’ve no qualms with shaking up those traditional gendered roles, I’ll even watch goopy chick-flicks, so long as (a) somebody dies, (b) something is destroyed, or (c), there are hot guys in the film (the latter of these is my excuse for watching an entire Amanda Bynes movie the other day).
All that said, I do believe there are some fundamental boundaries that should not be crossed. Maybe not for everyone, but for me.
Namely, I do not not NOT belong in the kitchen, unless I’m stumbling into aforementioned kitchen in the middle of the night, grumbling in a manly tone while kicking a cat and scratching my nether regions as I forage for beer and late-night snacks, the crumbs of which I will scatter in my bed in the best of Cro-Magnon male tradition.
At the risk of sounding sexist (or something), I firmly believe the kitchen is strictly the domain of women and/or men who are not me. Why? Because I’m a mess in there. Really. It’s tragic, pretty much.
Want proof? Ask the cats, who were laughing in that desultory feline we’re-better-than-you way earlier this afternoon while watching me cursing the new Kuhn Rikon paring knife that wouldn’t properly dice veggies for my instant noodles (I’m a ramen gourmet, doncha know?).
And ask the bird, who surely learned a couple new fun swear words when I realized I was using the knife upside-down.
As one of my favorite traditional male archetypes would say, d’oh.