Friday, January 01, 2010

It's 2010. We're living in the future. So where is my jetpack?

I got a rude shock in the supermarket yesterday. A woman pushed her trolley past me. Her little toddler was sitting in the child seat, happily chanting 'hammer! hammer! hammer!' and bouncing her hand up and down.

And the woman said to her daughter:

"No no, you're a nice girl, nice girls don't hammer!"

Wow. This woman must have been about my age. It's so depressing to see someone unthinkingly blurting out this poisonous muck. Or, I suppose, the alternative is that she is deliberately and consciously reactionary about gender roles - in line with a fundamentalist religion for example. Which would also be depressing.

11 comments:

2paw said...

It still happens, and I don't understand why people want to enforce such stereotypical gender roles??
I'll see your jetpack and raise you a hoverboard!!!

Michelle said...

Mama's obviously never heard of feminism in the 20th century.

Besides ... "Hammertime!"

(can't touch this)

Bells said...

ugh. I hate that stuff.

Nice mothers don't enforce gender stereotypes is what I'd have said.

Rose Red said...

heh, what Bells said! Oh dear.

I'm glad nice girls make yummy potato salad though...I made your mum's for Christmas and it was TOPS!

Dr K said...

ok, thats kind of bizarre. i do often think we are back in the 50s, feminism wise. how the hell did that happen? ps happy new year!

Jejune said...

Ugh. So - the reverse is - BAD GIRLS *do* hammer. Excellent. I think we're ALL bad girls by this definition.

Save us from stupid people :p

Happy New Year, regardless :)

(And I second Michelle - Hammertime! Can't touch this!)

Julie said...

One of the first toys we got our daughter was a hammer, so this sort of amuses me, but it also makes me sad, for the reasons everyone else states.

I'm not so sure it's good to raise a female to be a 'nice girl', either. Think about it.

Verification word, 'yaherl'. What do you do when hearing sickening gender stereotyping? Yaherl, that's what.

amy said...

Any chance at all she was saying it ironically (she queried hopefully)? I totally say things to crack myself up and I suppose I should pay attention to the fact that people around me probably don't know that, but in the end, I don't care.

No gender stereotypes here, either. We have girls who hammer and boys who love pink. The good thing is, this girl will likely figure out her mom is wrong soon enough. (And perhaps it was the hammering...perhaps this mother would say nice boys don't hammer in the shopping cart, either, because perhaps she thinks nice children just sit still and be quiet. In that case, all my children are not nice.)

Karen said...

I tend to think like Amy. It was the hammering, and perhaps she would have said "Nice boys don't hammer" if she happened to have a boy-child in the cart.

But then again, I still think the mother is misguided. All kids hammer. They just need to be taught where it's appropriate and where it is not. A simple, "No hammering in the shopping cart" would have sufficed.

Donna Lee said...

I was raised that way! Girls are NICE so you better be nice. Act like a lady at all times.

My girls are women. Strong, intelligent and wonderfully independent. My grandmothers would be proud.

And I want a jetpack, too.

Alwen said...

A jet pack would be SO useful when we get snow by the foot!

When one of my cousins got married, my mom & I bought his fiancee tools. (Mom & I both have "kitchen tools", meaning the screwdrivers, pliers, etc, we keep in the kitchen for tightening pan handles and fixing door pulls.)

Poor thing, she look like we'd brought a box of newts and salamanders to her bridal shower!