"It's too bad you're a girl," Little Dog said after we'd placed our order at the counter.
"Really? Why's that. I'm pretty happy being a girl," I replied.
"Well, because you're not lucky enough to be a boy. Boys can do everything. Girls can't. Too bad you don't get to be a boy."
From his tone, I could tell he wasn't really feeling sorry for me, he was trying to lord his supposed gender superiority over me. I'm not sure where he gets this from, but I find it obnoxious if not entirely age appropriate.
"Girls can do pretty much everything boys can do, you know," I reminded him. "In fact, we can do some things boys can never do!"
"No you can't!" he protested, then overcome by curiosity he just had to ask, "Like what?"
"I can make a baby. In fact, I made you!" I said, "Boys can't do that."
"Nope, she's right," the man behind the counter agree, grinning at this whole exchange.
Little Dog looked up at me, eyes wide. Then he collapsed. His back against the espresso counter, he slid down to a seated position as he howled, "Don't mock me." Then his eyes filled with tears and he cried, big fat very real tears. And I felt terrible despite having only told him the truth.
"Sweetie, come on now. You're amazing," he silently let me move him away from the counter where I could try again to cheer him.
"You know," I said "Girls aren't better than boys because we can do special things. Boys and girls each bring something special to the party. There are things boys can do that girls can't."
"Really?" he asked, his voice brightening only slightly.
"Yes. I promise."
"Like what?" he asked.
"Well, boys can pee standing up. Girls can't do that." I offered, thinking this might strike the right tone for this little boy.
"Really?" he said, his cloud immediately lifting.
"Yep. I mean, we could, but we'd mostly end up peeing all over our feet. No aim."
"But it's so easy!" he said, eyes clear and sparkling again, that smugness of his earlier line of talk returning. And then, as if on cue, "It's so sad you're not a boy. Boys can do everything!"
Pasta ala Fridge
1 year ago