lundi, avril 17, 2006

Yes, I know that most normal people would not break into a cold sweat at the sight of the word "bun." I'm not talking about buns, as in the kind made with yeast. Some of us aren't confident of our culinary talents, and so we like to avoid baking. Some of us are also carb-averse, so a bun, particularly ones brimful of currants and topped with lovely rings of sugary icing, represents a temptation we must avoid. I don't mind baking... twice a year or so when I can't find something at the Acme. It doesn't scare me one bit, no sir. I love carbs in almost any form, the more sugar on top the better. Nor am I alluding to "buns" as in "buns of steel." Exercise tapes have the same allure for me as do correspondence courses that suggest you can learn ancient Greek in five easy lessons. The kind of bun that frightens me is the ornamental one that rests gently, neatly, and sedately on a schoolgirls head. It's the kind of bun that my daughter Sian is supposed to have for her ballet class picture, along with "light make up" and a suitably girlish attitude. This isn't Sian's blog, so we won't talk about her spunky, independent, and eclectic way of expressing her feminine side. At any rate, it isn't her femininity that is being called into question when she arrives at rehearsal with her waves spilling out of a ponytail perched atop her head like a waterfall. It's my inability to impose order on her unruly strands that will reveal to her teachers, and other interested onlookers, what really goes on in our household. In the midst of trauma involving such traditionally "feminine" activities as sewing buttons, ironing dresses, and household chores, I have often reflected on my mother. When she and my father wed, she informed him that housecleaning was not one of her gifts, and that they would need to find someone to come in to do it. I wonder wistfully who mom, who was a phenomenal cook and baker, recruited to sew buttons and iron. Possibly my grandmother, who did know how to braid her hair into a bun and was enough of a saint to try to teach me to make hospital corners on my bed as a child (anybody know what hospital corners are anymore?) At any rate, I cannot really blame my ancestors. Nor can I attribute my clumsiness solely to being a left-handed rebel in a right-handed world. I can only hope that, tomorrow, if I grovel long enough, one of the mom's with the sylph-like daughter in the immaculately pressed costume will take pity on my shortcomings and give Sian that classic ballerina beauty look that she least for one night!

1 commentaire:

Anonyme a dit…

Thank goodness we women who cannot sew or do those historically feminine tasks can flourish today. What must it have been like for those of our grandmothers and great-grandmothers who might have made great lawyers, or writers, or professors, but who couldn't quilt or play the pianoforte well and who therefore failed in their expected roles?