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Every Little Helps

Tuesday, May 20, 2003

On Gender Roles


Here's a funny story (link from Kendall):
Some years back, Washingtonian Magazine ran an article on celebrity couples in Washington, DC. In it, they pictured Bob Dole - then Senator from Kansas - and his wife, Liz Dole - then Secretary of Transportation - making the bed in their Watergate apartment. Bob Dole received a letter which runs roughly as follows:

Dear Senator Dole: I have seen the photograph of you and your wife making the bed in your apartment. In my judgment, the fact that you allowed the photographer to take that shot represents not only an embarrassment to American manhood but proof positive of your own emasculation. Sincerely, Thomas Bentsen

Bob Dole wrote back, and here I am quoting:

Dear Mr. Bentsen: I am in receipt of your blunt letter oflast month in which you criticized me for allowing a photographer to take a photo of Liz and me making the bed.

Look, buddy, if it hadn't been for the photographer, no way Liz would have been caught dead helping me with that job. Sincerely, Bob Dole

Bob and I are like that :) He's the safe and cautious driver (well, going to stereotypes of half a century ago, that's the men, but not in today's world), I'm the one who knows about cars; he likes to play with babies and change diapers; I'm the one who rushes to be able to assemble the new furniture he's bought that's still in its box. Sure, I knit and cook and want to nurture, and he watches football. I'd say he's masculine enough. But, I figure, as long as you have someone in each of the gender roles for each module, even if sometimes you're switched, you're fine. I like BobDole!

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