All of this talk here and here about what it means to be female got me believing that I really could do my own mending. So I set up my unopened sewing machine and got to work. Two hours later I’m frustrated as hell, have gotten absolutely nowhere on my sewing project, and would do just about anything for a tire to change or a plumbing problem to rear its head so that I can get something done and not feel utterly inept.

I’m pretty good at business, driving motorized toys vehicles, fixing the car, fishing and hunting, lifting weights, doing home improvements, and demolishing things. I’m pretty not-good at or not too interested in cooking, sewing, knitting, decorating, fashion, makeup, scrapbooking, giggling, braiding hair, or any of that kind of stuff. Some might say my interests and talents are masculine, but I find this mystifying. Why is my changing a tire a masculine act? Or, more importantly and to the point, why is changing a tire NOT a feminine act?

How silly this all is. Why can’t we let go of the idea that there are feminine things and masculine things? These are entirely socially constructed concepts and they are inaccurate and limiting. If you know me in person you know that I definitely do not look remotely manly and usually would be described as a good-looking woman. I’m not shy to say I clean up nice and can turn some heads. I am not remotely masculine and I don’t think my abilities are masculine either. They are just human abilities.

Sewing does not happen to be one of them, for me.