10 May 2014

Meditations on gender while mowing the lawn

AFAB is something that happened to me, something over which I had no control. I can control my response to it. AFAB could, in some frameworks, be considered an act of victimization. Females are unfairly disadvantaged in many, if not most, current cultures. Therefore, to assign a person femaleness is to exert power over them, and to declare that they will be oppressed.

What if we stop assigning gender at birth?

Just the other day I told a friend, "I don't mind not being a boy when there are boy chores." It's truer for some chores than others. "I take out the trash!" This morning I got up earlyish and mowed the lawn. Most of it, anyway. Then it started to rain. And as soon as I stopped moving for a couple of minutes, I realized I was going to beg off the rest of the yard for menstrual cramps. Ugh.

I tamed the jungle! I feel proud.

Sweat and deep breathing and grass and sticks and an old-style push-mower. I moved those blades under the power of my own body only, and that feels good. I flipped it over and pulled clots out to unstick the blades more times than I cared to count. It feels good to use my body to influence my environment. Baseball cap and basketball shorts and hairy legs and all. I think I'll try on being a cap-wearing dyke this summer. That sounds like fun.

When I showered, I shaved my legs for the first time since October. I was considering letting this be the summer I just don't do it. Ultimately, and with all politics aside, I like my legs better bare. Leg hair makes for interesting gender play, though.

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