Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Boys and Girls are different…

So this week I learned two things, (1) no matter how much I deny it, I may be an adult and (2) boys are just wired differently than girls.

Why do I think I am becoming an adult? Well, I went rollerblading with a friend at lunch today. When I was 20, I would have talked about how much I drank the night before, or no matter what my friend said to the contrary, what a hottie the girl was. When I was 30, I would have talked about the cool, new powertool that I purchased and how much I drank while using it for "bathroom renovation". Now that I am older than 30, less than 40, and alot less than Jim... we talked about the mortgage (benefits of vs. being mortgage free) and saving for the kids college fund. A sad milestone was reached today... I may be an adult.

And why do I think boys and girls are different? Well, besides the physical differences they just are. I know there has been this argument about nature vs. nurture and whatnot. But based on first hand experience, there is no nurture, there is only nature.

For example, the family went bike riding the other day. We ended up at the local park for two reasons: (1) the kids are still small and the bikes are equipped with training wheels, which makes the park the safest place around, and (2) the park has the flattest stretch of land. Where I live is very hilly, so flat stretches are few and far between. If you've ever been to Southern Virginia, West Virginia or Kentucky you know what I mean.

We decided to spend one leg of the trip (going out or coming back) with one child so everyone got quality time. As luck would have it, I got the Boy first. I didn’t realize but the boy was on a mission. You see, a bike path is like a giant race track and the objective is to get to the end of the track. To be precise, get to the end of the track as fast as you can. I like to call it a “clear focus”, Mom calls it his AR tendencies.

So he’s on his little Schwinn cruising along and I am beside him on the super duper 20-something speed. Please note, I just got the bike and little did I know it had so many gears. ANYWAY, I’m in the lowest gear (#1 on the left handle) and sorta low on the right handle (#3). It means that I can peddle and move along slowly, but I move. I think this is the gear that Lance Armstrong uses when he goes up the Pyrenees but it worked for me in the flat park.

I should have noticed something was not quite right when we had to stop several times to let Mom and the Girl catch up. But, never letting someone else's misery impact my good time I didn't see what was happening. So, after a while, read: the Wife couldn’t take it anymore, we switched children. Although tired, the Boy zzzooooooooommmmmeeeedddd off again, this time with Mom in tow. Which left me with… dum dum dum… the Girl.

This is when the differences between boys and girls became very, very obvious. You see, as a little boy at heart, I related to the Boy's drive to reach the end. If I’m on a bike, I want to go fast, I want to see the world rush by, I want to go someplace. Little girls aren’t like that. At least my little Girl isn’t. My little Girl likes to talk....
She talks about the butterflies that are around us,
She talks about the green grass,
She talks about brown grass,
She talks about the squirrel that ran across our path,
She talks about school,
She talks about her “12 Dancing Princess’s” video
She talks... and talks.... and talks... and talks...

Now, in all this talking did you see any peddling? Nope, neither did I. I actually had to downshift. That’s right I went from the lowest gear (#1 on the left handle) and sorta low on the right handle (#3), to lowest gear (#1 on the left handle) and lowest on the right handle (#1). That’s right, I was in gear #1, level #1. I have never, ever in my entire life used this gear. Not only I have not used it, I don’t know anyone else who has used it either. I could pedal as fast as I could and still move ONE INCH and hour. Seriously, it was all I could do to keep the bike upright I was moving so slow.

And as I started to realize I could walk my bike faster than ride it... off in the distance, I heard my wife cackle, “Free. I’m Free!” as she sped away.

At least I think she said "Free" because Girl was talking about the baseball field, and talking about horses, and talking... and talking....


  1. I dunno Lee, I know plenty of guys who won't shut-up no matter how much you want them too and I know girls who are terminally shy and quiet. In fact, I remember hardly talking to people at all until I met my friend Jen in high school. I spent most of my time with my nose in a book. My sister talked a lot though. Actually she still does, just not to me.

  2. But are general point girls are more verbal then men.

    Lee there are other reasons girls and boys are different and since you have children I thought you knew about those already.

  3. I have boy/girl twins, and have to agree with've hit it right on the head with this. The boy has a goal and gets to it, and the girl narrates her slow progress every step of the way. They're both smart kids and we've tried to treat them the same as they've grown, but the differences are hard-wired. Thanks for the laugh - I've been in your position and noticed the same thing. (And probably used the "I'm Free" line more than once, too).