Friday, July 28, 2006

Wherein We See The Difference Between Boys And Girls

The kids and I were playing with some mini, plastic superhero characters this morning. It's a set that comes with Captain America, Spiderman and Wolverine. This particular set is made for little kids, and comes with a little playground set that is put together Leggo style and features a slide, a see saw and a climbing wall for the three superheros to play on. My mom got it for David back when we lived in Vermont. We rediscovered it again recently and even though they don't know these superheros, they know they're supposed to have "super powers" and therefore are "super cool".

David's got Captain America and Sofi's got Wolverine and Spiderman. Somehow she ended up with two, but David didn't seem to mind. They decide to have a small, stuffed cow be the helpless victim and dangle him from a step on the staircase.

David: "FSHHHHUUUUU!!!!! FSHHHUUUUUUUU!!" He straightens Cap. America's arms and makes him fly around the room, occasionally crashing into things, like the ottoman, the cat, the lamp. "Don't worry...I will save you!"

Sofia: She's busy trying to put the playground set together. "Mommy, Fiderman needs a kiss. He likes kisses."

Me: "Oh...okay." I give the molded plastic hero a kiss.

Sofia: "No, he wants a kiss from Ulverine." She makes Spiderman and Wolverine kiss. "He likes hugs, too." She smiles, and the two embrace.

Me: "Well, that's nice that they're such good friends."

Meanwhile David is now throwing Captain America into the air while crashing himself into various objects in the room. He's making alternate flying and crashing sounds.

Sofia: "Fiderman wants some ice cream. He likes ice cream!" She proceeds to stick a plastic peg from her stacking peg board into his cupped hand and she makes slurping sounds. "Dat is some goooood ice cream!"

David is also sticking little objects into the hands of Captain America and then having him throw them at the wall, while making more loud smashing sounds. Sofia is staring lovingly at her Wolverine and Spiderman while holding them as though they were newborn kittens, petting them gently, whispering softly near their little heads.

My children do not fall neatly into stereotypical gender roles- they are constantly breaking the mold for those supposed "boy/girl behaviors". But days like this do remind me how very different males and females are at the core and how no matter how culture continues to transform us, some things will never change.

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