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overalls and talk beyond gender and age ! an old man’s thoughts on good life!

August 2, 2009

DSC01174DSC01168Happy Sunday, these two photos have nothing to do with gender, but they show the moon the other night viewed from our farm house and the other one show how trees are being formed by the yearlong western direction of the blow of the wind ! and then to my thoughts of roles of gender. For years I have been struggling with being a man, an ordinary man ! When my kids were small, I was often in kindergarden and school as parent and attending the parents group etc. and liked to make cakes and to make festivals for the kids, but I also experienced that most of the things were done by women, the mothers, and not by the fathers. Taking care of baking, cooking and clothing, garden, house design, laundry etc. were sort of the women area and even in the liberated 70’ties you were a strange male if you were interested in all this. You was supposed to like fishing, hunting, to build carports etc. etc. I tried several times to discuss this issue with my female academic colleagues involved in developing gender research as a new field, but it did not suit into their agenda ! and when I meet them today, they have in many cases returned to their pre-revolutionary female style and have turned into very traditional women with very traditional husbands as well, thats hopefully fine for them, but still unsatisfactory for men like me who wants to be all right making house things. Last night I talked with my wife last night about all this and about when I as 14 year old boy, in 63, moved from Copenhagen out in the countryside on a farm, which my father bought in order to realize his dream of being a farmer. In the beginning my parents didn’t live their, but they had a guy as farm manager taking care of the farm. So I lived alone in our house at the farm, while I went over to the farm managers house to eat and have some social life, when I came home from school! They were a very down to earth family and I really enjoyed their company. I could relax and and in fact enjoy to work in the field, driving tractor etc. and then after getting completely dirty and tired, eat as many strawberries as you can and watch a funny movie ! At the same time, I was almost scared to death to visit some of the farms of my own family, why ? because they sort of expected the tough boy of me ! well, I might have been wrong and misunderstood my folks , but that’s what I remember ! but what about overalls ? how do they play a role in this ! well, the wife to the farm manager, the mother to two boys, she wore overalls, and one of the first things I remember was when she asked my mother whether she could wear some clean overalls when she went up to our neighbors ! and I also remember that she patched her overalls and rolled them up, just like I am doing now ! she also convinced me to wear jeans in school back in the 60’ties and it was not only the overalls, but also the fact that she listened to me, although I stuttered a lot, and she talked a lot and I listened as well ! even if I was just a young kid! well, I don’t know If I can make a consistent conclusion from this, but anyway, it makes me feel okey in doing the house things, making food etc. and wearing overalls, when I think of her and I like people like her, also today. Overalls and good talk are taking you beyond gender and does not make you less woman or man, but enables you to create your own way of living ! I don’t know if that makes sense to anybody apart from myself and my wife, but it really doesn’t matter !

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. Laury A. Bourgeois permalink
    August 5, 2009 5:22 am

    It’s wonderful to find people in our lives who help us see that it is okay to be unconventional or different-I like to think of it as being special or “unique” and how much more unique can each of us be but to follow our individual hearts! Sounds like you found some “overall wisdom” to me!

  2. August 14, 2009 2:11 am

    It all makes sense to me!

  3. September 19, 2009 5:58 pm

    We long ago gave up worrying about what other folks think. And, I admit, we take a small amount of glee in watching people wonder what we are up to when either of us just takes on whatver needs being done. I recall a phone call from BH’s (Better Half’s) parents in which he begged a moment’s pause to put the tomato canner on the stove, and to call me in from outside where I was changing the water pump on the pick-up truck. It’s pretty good this way. I’m not sure if we thank the feminist movement for it or if it goes back to my Danish great-Aunts, who pretty much did as they wished, and damn the observers.

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