One of the great joys of travel is that it exposes you to foreign, sometimes alien points of view. Unfortunately, sometimes those views are stupid.
Like, for instance, this column by Jordan Rane in American Way, the American Airlines in-flight magazine. (Yeah, yes, okay, I know: Probably not really fair to pick on an in-flight mag, but that’s what I come in contact with all the time.) Titled “The Paternal Bucket List,” it’s about the five things all dads should try to do with their sons: get involved in their sports, go camping, build something, plant a vegetable garden, show him where his ancestors came from.
Those are all totally fair ideas for what Rane calls an “admittedly subjective” list. But as I read it, and as I thought about Warren’s recent worry about how to teach his son to be a man, I got mildly annoyed, and not just because my seat barely reclined an inch. (At least I was in the exit row, so I had legroom.) My problem: I don’t have a son. I have a daughter. Apparently, his column just doesn’t apply to me and Sasha.
In other words, why restrict this stuff to fathers-and-sons? Why shouldn’t any parent, male or female, try to do these very same things with their kids, whatever their gender?
It feels weird to make this complaint, as if I’ve suddenly turned into some castrated nag, but come on, Jordan Rane, think a little broader next time. After all, if you can teach your kid to be a man through such manly activities, surely I can do the same for my daughter?
Hmm, that didn’t come out quite right.