Roller models

I’ve been quietly musing on womanly violence. Not violence towards woman, individually or as a gender, although Maeve knows there’s plenty to think on there. No I meant more Boudicca opening a can of whoop arse. Although she was rubbish apparently, just had better PR than the many more successful female Celt tribe leaders. Bloody typical.

It started with the arrival of one of the DVD’s I’d requested from Lovefilm. Usually our request list is a struggle between my choices, varied but likely to contain a certain amount of hollywood nonsense and Steve’s, obscure music documentaries which come with a million extra discs or obscure and deeply troubling horror films, mostly of Japanese origin. We regularly sneakily sign in and rearrange priorities in our favour. Steve has the edge on this because of all his early morning wandering and tetrus playing. Humph.

Anyway – we both wanted to see “Whip It” and I would absolutely recommend it. Ellen Paige is the lead, it’s directed by Drew Barrymore and it’s set in a roller derby world. Packing it up to send back I struggled for the right words to explain to Steve why I enjoyed it so much. “It’s great to see women being violent – physically..” He raises his eyebrows doubtfully. I don’t mean that really. Maybe I mean I enjoyed seeing women being physically rough and tumble in a way that is not sexual but joyous. I think there was freedom in the womans eye directing the camera.

I churn over this puzzling attraction over the next few days and while washing up I hear Rosalind Miles new book, Warrior Women being reviewed on the radio. I like the sound of this a lot. I read her Womens History of the World as a teenager and remember flouncing about snarling, “yeah it’s all HIS-story isn’t it?” at baffled teachers and fellow students. Buddha help me I was unbearable. Still a later reread shows it wasn’t the materials fault and this book, co authored with Robin Cross looks really interesting.

I wonder if I’m thinking about this stuff because Ida seems as though she’s shaping up as a right bruiser. My mother in law reproved her the other day for not being ” ladylike” I bristled but bit my tongue. She wasn’t downing lager or anything but copying her brother in a bit of rough and tumble. I mentally note to try to resist this ladyfying and to let her embrace her physicality.

Everyone tells me how different boys and girls are, a pregnant friend asks if this is my experience but I honestly have to say no. I mean, my children are different – because they are different people. I read this book, Delusions of Gender with interest a few months ago.  

You may wonder where all this is going. As do I dear reader, as do I. Do you think there is an inherent gender difference, aside from all the pleasurable joshing and joking I take part in with my friends about our partners? Or is it all nurture and if that’s the case where can I get some tips in not screwing it all up?


2 responses to “Roller models

  1. when you find the place telling you how not to screw it up can you send me a link? I fear it may be too late though

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