The other day, I stopped to help a neighbour whose car was stuck in his driveway. (It was winter. Snow.)
“Want me to push while you give it some gas?” I offered.
“Do you think you can?” he replied.
Well, if I didn’t think I could, I wouldn’t’ve offered. Numbnuts.
On another day, I heard another neighbour say that he’d seen the small tree across the path alongside my cabin (dragged there in an attempt to discourage ATVers), but he didn’t think I’d put it there. He thought to himself it was “too heavy for Peggy”.
(And yes, note the ‘Peggy’ – I’ve never introduced myself to anyone as ‘Peggy’, but he is not the only one to have gone for the diminutive version – do I call him Bobby instead of Bob?).
Here’s the thing. Both neighbours see me kayak every spring/summer/fall afternoon – all afternoon. They both see me hiking through the bush every winter afternoon – all afternoon. They both know I used to be a marathon runner, they’ve seen me go running. They both know (or would, if they’d actually thought about it) that I shovel my own driveway and split my own wood.
And yet pushing a car and moving a small fallen tree is apparently beyond my capabilities.
But not, apparently, beyond their capabilities. Because they’re male. Even though one is in his 70s and the other is in his 60s. Which means I’m considerably younger. Still, they must be stronger than me. Their worldview depends on it.