May 14, 2011

The battle of the sexes

Or as kids call it today, The Boy/Girl War.

It started back when Eve passive-aggressively gave Adam fruit from the forbidden tree.  (I think she must have resented her secondary role.)  Perhaps it went something like this.

Until my son went to kindergarten, most of his friends were girls.  And that's because most of my friends have daughters.  He didn't wear tutus or play with Polly Pocket, but early on, he didn't discriminate when it came to friends.

Then he went to public school.  And I started hearing about The Boy/Girl War.  Apparently, this is a very serious activity, one that requires strategy and military precision.  The Boy/Girl War involved groups of boys and girls sabotaging each other's projects at recess.  The girls would "bake cookies" in a hollowed out tree, and the boys would raid the tree-oven and stomp on the cookies.  The boys would build a fort out of sticks and limbs, and the girls would kick it all down.  Then the boys would chase the girls, and vice versa.  It was probably the only thing my son liked about kindergarten.

I thought it was a public school thing.  I was all, "School is like Lord of the Flies!  Homeschooled kids don't act like that!"

Yeah they do.

I'm sure there's some deep Freudian reason for this eternal conflict, but I have no idea what it is.  I only know that it's pretty entertaining to watch.

My best friend Shrinky Dink and I met at childbirth class.  Her eldest daughter (Thing 1) and Nature Boy are only a few days apart in age.  We didn't keep in touch after the classes were over, but when our babies were 6 months old, we ran into each other at our church's young mothers group.  We discovered we'd had the same OB/GYN, had delivered at the same hospital, went to the same church, both had degrees in the social service field, and were both born in Illinois, where our dads (but not our moms) still live.  We became instant friends. 

Since our kids were born in the same week, their birthday parties often happen on the same weekend.  Our respective parties went smoothly (except for that time Shrinky Dink unwittingly preheated her oven with a box of Krispy Kremes inside) until last year.

Below is a picture from last year in which Shrinky Dink brought a horde of female Rambo-impersonators to prank Nature Boy and the clueless group of boys we had over for an overnight birthday camp out.  They forked our yard (prompting a threat from our cranky next door neighbor to call the police), sprinkled glitter everywhere, flushed the boys out of their tent with air horns, and then went after them with Silly String.  It was an expert tactical maneuver. 

Yeah, they got us good.  They were very proud of themselves.  I think Shrinky Dink was prouder than the girls were.  The boys, however, could think of nothing but revenge.  They immediately began planning how to get the girls back. 

We played it cool, you know.  Hoping the girls would forget that we owed them one.  We waited A YEAR to return the favor.  On the day of this year's birthday sleepover, I pretended to be all cranky and fibromyalgia-y so Shrinky Dink would be scared of me kindly refrain from girl antics during the party.  (Yeah, I played the disability card.)  It worked.  Shrinky Dink made the mistake of going out to dinner, concerned about how my health would hold up to a crowd of rowdy boys, I'm sure.  I supplied the boys with prank rations and Tree Guy led the mission.  They did the toilet paper thing, the Silly String thing, and they wrote boy-promoting messages all over Shrinky Dink's driveway and house.

I'm woman enough to admit that their prank was better than ours.  But the girls should be aware that teenage boys are much better at pranking than pre-teen boys are.  We've got years to make it up to them.


  1. That's so great! I wish I was a good prankster but I always get nervous and chicken out LOL.

  2. How lucky are you guys to have such great friends!