Recently I read an article about Chris Hemsworth baking his daughter a birthday cake. In fact, there were numerous articles about it all over the internet, here’s an example.
The cake did look pretty good and better than anything I could ever bake, but I don’t get what all the fuss is about.
Chris Hemsworth is hot, talented and famous, but at the end of the day, he baked a cake. He did not find a cure for cellulite, a way to end global warming or discovered an unknown planet.
I wonder whether his wife would have got more media attention if she had baked their daughter a cake. I don’t think so.
It was the fact that he was a man doing something that is considered by society to be ‘women’s work’.
A couple of months ago my Gran’s TV broke (I know this seems completely unrelated, but bear with me.) She rang me in a panic because she was going to miss an episode of Downton Abbey.
‘I can’t get hold of your uncle’.
I was confused, my uncle lives quite far away whereas I am ten minutes down the road.
‘Why do you need him?’
‘Because I called your brother and he’s not home’.
I still didn’t understand.
‘I’ll come and fix it’.
There was a moment’s hesitation. ‘I don’t think you’ll be able to’. She said doubtfully.
I sighed. ‘You don’t need a man to fix it. I’ll come now’.
Fifteen minutes later it was sorted and my Gran was shocked. She seemed to suddenly view me as some sort of technical genius, and I had only re-tuned and wiggled a few wires.
My Gran came from a generation where there were clear lines between what was considered men’s work and women’s work, so although I don’t like it, I can understand where she is coming from.
However, I am baffled that this idea is still present in today’s society. We have male midwives and nurses, female police officers and politicians (though not many!) and yet we are expected to pass out from delight when a man bakes a cake.
I’m not going to be putting up shelves anytime soon, because I have no inclination to, and also, I am rubbish at DIY. However, if I did, I wouldn’t need a party to celebrate it being done. Although the article about Chris Hemsworth was actually quite positive, it ended up coming across a bit patronising.
Men and women should be able to do whatever they want without a big fuss.
(On a side note, when I googled ‘women putting up shelves’ to get a picture, there were loads of men putting up shelves and women placing folded towels on shelves, but no actual women putting up shelves- WTF??)
If you enjoyed this post, why not check out Stuck on the Treadmill of Life?