Monday, April 19, 2010

Guns and Butter

A few weeks before Elijah’s birthday, my brother and I were having beers when the subject of gifts came up. Specifically, he asked if he buy Eli a Star Wars toy.

Normally, I would've said, “Yeah. Let’s begin the indoctrination. I’ll go get my robe.”

But I hesitated. Diana and I have differing opinions on the Rebels’ struggle against the evil galactic empire. It’s not that she doesn’t agree with the Rebel’s ideology. And I’m fairly sure she is pro Ewok.

It’s the guns. Before Eli was born, Diana made me promise never to buy Eli a gun. We’re pacifists. And, quite frankly, we’re having a hard enough time keeping him from hitting and pushing his cousins without adding firearms into the mix.

And if you looked at Eli’s list as created by Diana, it was exclusively toy cooking supplies. A toy oven. Toy pots and pan. Toy eggs and butter and a slightly inappropriate toy hot dog.

Upon reading the list, some inner Neanderthal leapt to the surface and shouted, “Cooking stuff? What are we doing, raising a girl?” I was immediately surprised that I had an inner Neanderthal. And that he was such a sexist jerk. And that he didn’t speak in grunts. I love cooking. It’s one of my biggest hobbies. And I am at least 80% man.

So I didn’t mess with his list. But I did give Steve permission to buy Eli some Star Wars stuff. But I didn’t tell Diana. That way I could feign shock and disappointment if she got mad. But I wanted Eli to have the option of playing with guns AND butter.

Birthday day came and went and Eli loved both his toy cooking supplies and toy intergalactic violence. He doesn’t really understand what the Star Wars stuff is, since we haven’t let him watch the movies. But he did learn from his cousins that they go, “Pew pew pew.”

But then again, he doesn’t really understand the cooking stuff, either. He pretended to boil toy eggs with a whole toy garlic. And then he added the creepy toy hot dog. What would Julia Child say?


amv said...

How old is he? My son is 3-1/2 and that bath photo looks like my son on any given night. I think it is chromosomes or something. Absolutely fascinated by guns and Star Wars. We've let him watch the original Star Wars movies and some Clone Wars cartoons. I was opposed to giving him guns but somehow he now has "an army of clone troopers." And, he makes a gun out of sticks, pretzels, you name it. Thanks for sharing. Andrea

Anonymous said...

Okay, I have much to say on this subject as I have gone through the slings and arrows of "To Gun, or not to gun". Here's the end of your story....he's a little boy and you can't keep him from playing guns. Diana, I was JUST like you, so passionate about NEVER giving Max a toy gun of any kind. I held on for as long as I could. It's just not going to happen. And, this made me feel better about it, the guns in Star Wars are NOT REAL. We are talking Laser guns here, not pistols. It's fantasy play, and it's great for their imagination. Star Wars is a made up world, a fantastically fake world. When he starts wanting to play "Kill, Kill, Kill with a double barrel shotgun", then you step in and use your Mom Power.

We make such promises as parents to never let them do this or that, but you have to choose your battles. Let him be a Jedi. Jedi's are spiritual, loyal and adhere to a code of honor most humans never could imagine. Plus, they ONLY use light sabers. They are the bomb. And, he'd look so cute in the robe.