Sex or Tree Forts

Boyz ‘n Gurlz.  Spell it any way you like, we’re different.  Always have been, no matter the fashions of the day.  I can’t speak for boys with authority, since I’m the mother of only one, but girls I know.  Girls spend a lot of time bullying boys, all while wishing they’d Pay Attention.  Not laughing at our jokes is just one way they get back at us.  It’s very effective.  They ARE funnier.

Growing up, I never thought much about it.  We lived on a very small street in my elementary school days, and kids were kids, not so much male or female.  In the summer, we all built tree forts, rode our bikes in bathing suits and flip flops, played “Statue” until the street lights were dimmed and our parents called us in.  Winter?  Everyone dragged a toboggan up the local hill (it looked like a mountain to me then; now it’s a neighborhood).  Girls and boys made snow forts and waged war on each other (the boys were always well-armed, but our forts, with their little built-in sofas, were where everyone met for hot chocolate post-battle).

It was marvelous.

I was just coming into my teens when “news” outlets were pushing a Gender War: My mother subscribed to Gloria Steinem’s “MS.” Magazine for me (!) the summer before I went into 7th Grade. Mom was the least political person I have ever known, but she was also entirely in thrall of anything coming out of the arbiters of pop culture dominated entirely by Hollywood and its delivery systems: television and weekly “news” mags.  “If these people are saying it, it must be true! Kitty Kelly said so!”

Pablum.  Take six people: three men and three women (however they “identify”).  The men will dominate the conversation, the women will let them, and then they’ll break off into their comfort group.  This is also true of ages and other identifiers.  Just go to a wedding and see who’s hanging out with who.  You’re not going to see a lot of kids dancing with their parents; more likely, they’re either smoking outside, or filming the oldsters and uploading snark on TikTok for lols.

This little strip acknowledges how simple this dynamic is: boys will think about girls, girls will talk about boys.  And my little foursome here are not yet at the age where they understand there’s a physical component.  They’re not yet beyond the tree-fort, toboggan stage.

So lovely.  So missed.