Quick question: would you hire a welder to do delicate carpentry work for you or a mechanic to mend your torn trousers simply because of his state of origin or gender even if the appropriately-skilled person is available? If you answered ‘yes’ to any of these questions, go to the next paragraph. If you answered ‘no’, skip it and go on to paragraph three.
So you answered ‘yes’. I’m sorry, you are a fool beyond redemption and you have failed life. In all likelihood, your villagers have put most of your sense inside a calabash somewhere and thrown it into a forest where it is equally likely that a hyena found it and took a dump on top of it . Accept my sincere condolences. Good luck with you truck-pushing, pit latrine cleaning or whatever other occupation you can obtain with whats left of your sense. You can stop reading now.
So you answered ‘no’. Hello and welcome to today’s post.
Optimization. Common sense. Utilize the best tool for a specific task. Get the most benefit for the least amount of effort. Whichever way you choose to put it, that’s what it’s all about. Optimization.
Seeing as how optimization is such a basic principle, I find it hard to understand why so many people seem to out-rightly reject and refuse to apply this in what is quite possibly the most important area of their lives: Relationships (and eventually, marriage). Instead we cling to ancient (and quite frankly, mostly misogynistic) preconceptions of what relationships functions should be. The man should do this. The woman should do that. Based on what exactly? How does the fact that you have a Penis make you wiser than the other members of the human race suffering Penile challenges? How does the fact that you have a vagina automatically make you more caring and loving than those of us suffering the curse of the perpetually erect organ?
Consider this carefully, Is there a special place where young people are taken and taught the skills that are ‘expected’ of their gender? No. Not really. At least, not any more. This may have been true of ancient civilizations past, where gender-based training was normal and consequently, gender-defined roles were assigned. For 21st century adults with no such rigid cultural, gender-based training, the idea of gender-based roles and functions is DEAD. As dead as the brain cells of anyone who has watched ‘Blackberry babes’ more than three times. All that’s left of it are the ‘feelings’ of certain myopic individuals stubbornly holding on to the relics of times past, in an era where they no longer have any real meaning or value.
Who says the man MUST pay the children’s school fees? Who says the woman MUST be the one to give up her job because the man has to move for his own career? Who says the woman MUST be the one to do the laundry and clean house? Don’t get me wrong, if it works for you then by all means, please go ahead and do it that way. But if it doesn’t come naturally, then don’t force it; optimize.
There are women that are natural leaders. They run million-dollar businesses, lead teams into dangerous terrain and possess organizational and analytical skills that would make even OCD patients drool with envy. Why then should they be relegated to play second fiddle to a husband that is obviously not their equal (in this specific respect)? In the same vein, there are men who are natural followers. They make great vice-presidents, team members and are pillars of support for several community/charity groups but they don’t have the natural leadership tendency, they don’t even want to be in that position. Why should they be forced to accept the role of leadership in the home? The most important unit of society? I put it to you that choosing the head of the home based on possession of a penis is about as foolish as choosing someone to manage your business solely based on where he/she was born. Gender-based role assignments are the last bastion of culturally accepted sexism in the world. Some men aren’t even qualified to be ‘head of Penis’ much less ‘head of home’. And some women should not even be let near dolls, much less actual children. Possession or lack of a certain organ does not equip you with the skills you need to perform a role. Natural inclination, interest and training does.
Ah! Wait, can you hear that? That lashing sound? Yes, I can hear the Religious adherents whipping out their ‘bible belts’ and ‘Koran canes’ to flog me. I hear some of you quoting the bible saying the man MUST be the head of the home and as such must take on the major responsibilities. Yeah, yeah, I know:
“…and the man is the head of a woman, and God is the head of Christ.” 1 Cor 11:3
I’m going to go out on a limb here and speak my mind. Being the head means being in a position to make the best decisions for your family. Sometimes the wise decision to make as the ‘head’ is to hand over authority to the more qualified person. Men, If you are blessed to have a wife that has more opportunities than you, is the wise decision not to let her take full advantage of them? Even to your own detriment? You say you’d catch a grenade for her, well then, leave the grenades aside, take a bullet to your ego and let logic win over pride. Women, you say you love this man more than life itself, do you love him enough to let him be himself without mockery, scorn, disdain or emasculation?
The real trick to all this as I said is Optimize. Let whoever is better qualified to perform a role, do so. That way, everyone is happy and no one feels forced to do anything. This is otherwise known as the “whatever works” principle. Let it the relationship work the way it should, not the way you imagine it should based on some prehistoric doctrines and baseless preconceptions.
I know some ladies will be waving their panties in the air screaming “Yes! Yes! Yes!” like a flag of victory and doing back-flips when they read this. I’m sorry, but it’s not feminist propaganda, it’s simply a statement of hard logic. I consider myself to be a reasonable person (perhaps too reasonable) and reason leads me to this conclusion. It has nothing to do with who is head or tail or intestine or tongue of the house or whatever. It’s simply a cry for balance and the removal of needless pressures from the necks of either party in a relationship (especially marriage). As much as we like to generalize, and say men are this or women are that, the truth is: We are all different. No two men are alike and no two women are the same. So why impose a one-size fits all policy of relationship roles? Adapt. Optimize. Its common-bloody-sense.
At least to me it is.