Tag Archives: gender

2558.  Notes for a novel

It was the start of a new academic year. There were so many exciting discoveries to be made. Who would people share their friendship with? It was the first proper break away from home! Who would meet who? What does the future hold?

There was Michael. Michael was gay and parents supported the choice. Michael was instantly attracted to Anthony.

Anthony was pansexual, also known as omnisexual or gender-blind. Anthony noticed Michael but was mainly attracted to Josie who was lesbian. Josie wasn’t just exciting; Josie was mysterious.

Imagine Josie’s disappointment upon discovering that Hazel was asexual. Hazel was interested in cuddles but little else. That is until Aiden came along.

Aiden was heterosexual but open to other possibilities. It is so disappointing when one discovers that the person they are attracted to is not normal. That didn’t stop Aiden from being attracted to Grace who was polyamorous. Aiden would have to share Grace with Andrew, Abigail and Landon.

Oh the disenchantment! Landon was heteronormal, that is, heterosexuality was considered the norm. What a bigot! Many questioned how anyone like that would ever make it all the way through primary school.

2262.  The world I woke to

Some of the parents with more liberated ideas were furious with their children’s school policy.  Halloween and Thanksgiving were fast approaching and the school had organized a Pumpkin Festival. In reality it was a pumpkin competition; whoever grew the biggest pumpkin would win a pair of rather expensive snow boots.

“That’s right,” swore parent Kim Buckwell, “fill the children with an ugly competitive spirit.”

There were two pairs of snow boots awaiting the competition; both suitable for either a girl or a boy. In the interest of equity the school decided one pair should go to the girl who grew the biggest pumpkin and one to the boy who grew the biggest pumpkin.

Now Joseph had seen Nigel’s pumpkin. It was huge. There was no beating it. Joseph’s pumpkin was big but not as big as Nigel’s. Joseph’s parents concurred with his decision; he would call himself Josephine, tie the hair into a ponytail, and change a pronoun or two. Having done that he entered his hefty pumpkin into the girls’ section of the competition.

The girls were horrified. Maizie declared that her pumpkin was big but nowhere near as big as Josephine’s. “I would win the snow boots if that horrid boy hadn’t turned into a girl,” said Maizie.

The judges agreed with Maizie. Nigel won the boys’ section and Maizie won the girls’ section. Josephine was disqualified. It was grossly unfair.

“It was like a kick in the balls,” said Josephine.

2230. Bravo Valerie!

Valerie was in charge. She’d been in charge all her life; in charge of everything. Now she had been promoted (at last! at last!) to become the Director of the Diversity and Inclusion Task Force at the University’s Department of Human Evolutionary Biology. At last she could demand real science from the lecturers. None of this namby-pamby nonsense of there being only two sexes. If multiple sexes were good enough for mushrooms it was good enough for humans. Had not fungi and humans evolved together on the same planet? If one wakes in the morning and feels like a marsupial then one is a marsupial.

We must rid ourselves of white, middle class, male, deeply-entrenched European concepts of science. When did we last teach the profound science of the Yoyontze Tribe? They could tell the time of year from the singing of birds. The weather was forecast in the flowering of the sontigaga vine. Warfare between villages was necessary to prevent the gene pool from getting too restricted. The science went on and on. And on. Butterflies are to be admired, not dissected. Oh look! There’s one now!

Yes, Valerie was in charge. She had expelled from the university’s teaching staff all who could not follow the science. After all, that’s what the Diversity and Inclusion Task Force was for. There are even rumours that Valerie is going to be nominated by the President to be the Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases – once the current holder kicks the bucket.

Bravo Valerie!

2197. The treehouse

It wasn’t much fun being the only boy in a family with seven girls. For starters, the house had only one bathroom. You’d think after twelve years that Chad would be used to it. He wasn’t.

Chad decided to build himself a treehouse in an old sycamore at the back of the property. That way he could escape with his friends and have his own space.

What a magnificent treehouse it was! It could be accessed only by climbing a rope. That was something some of his sisters wouldn’t be seen dead doing.

One day he came home with two of his friends from school and there was a ladder propped up against the tree. Inside the treehouse was a pink plastic tea set.

Even though Chad had been taught at school that there was no difference these days between girls and boys, the treehouse trapdoor soon had a padlock on it

2025. Are you gender neutral or gender neutral?

Most interplanetary aliens look like humans. They have two arms, two legs, two nostrils, two ears, and so on. Presumably underneath their clothes they are much the same as humans, but an earthly visitor could hardly ask aliens to take off their clothes to enable observation.

The problem is – and this seems to be the case in all twenty-seven known planets with intelligent beings – in looks at least, males and females seem very much the same; same hair, same complexion, same height, and so on. They appear to be gender neutral, although they clearly make babies one way or another.

Even the Honniplexes, whose climate and terrain are as different as one could get from Earth, have human features, although their feet are slightly oversized.

How do all these aliens know which is which? Who is what when it comes to sex? Obviously one can’t wait until “the moment” to find out that the other person is the wrong gender to make a baby. As Marilynn Duckplath declared in Earth Parliament, “How can we use non-sexist language when we don’t know what gender we are trying to avoid? It has become a matter of science to find out the interplanetary facts of life.”

There was nothing for it but to send a crew out into space to force the aliens to strip. But what a disappointment! “We were extremely disappointed with what we scientifically observed,” reported the head scientist to Earth Parliament. “We took all sorts of measurements and everything seemed much the same as my own bits and pieces.” Marilynn Duckplath pushed even further: “Could you describe what you observed in greater detail.”

Enough is enough. Marilynn was greatly dissatisfied. She took the sex of aliens into her own hands. The next time aliens came to Earth she asked them point blank: “Which of you are males and which are females and how do you tell the difference?”  The answer stunned the scientific community. One planet distinguished the sexes via smell, another through sound, another through touch, another by giving a gentle bite on the neck when greeting a hitherto unknown person. Earth seemed to be the only planet that sorted out sexual identity via looks.

Marilynn took the lead in introducing new legislation on Earth. “How can we have gender equality throughout the cosmos when there are vastly different ways of identifying gender? From now on humans will identify their gender via sound. That way we can strive for universal equality.”

And that is why little boys are taught to fart loudly and crudely, whereas little girls (who are sugar and spice and all things nice) are taught to fart in the quietest possible manner.

Further legislation is to be introduced in the future to refine the situation. It is sexist to demand that boys and girls be taught to fart differently. All must fart the same. In future, aliens when they visit are to rightly be perplexed as to who are the males and who are the females. They’ll consider sending a team of scientists to investigate.