Thursday, October 20, 2011

Rites of Manhood

Unlike our tribal ancestors, there are very few rites of passage to adulthood for boys in the modern age. Getting drunk with a few pals is hardly up there with killing a wild boar with your bare hands, or being ritually circumcised with a flint knife.

Yet despite the increase in numbers of men reaching the age of 30 but still living with their parents, the primal instincts to break free and demonstrate independence have not yet evolved out of 21st century Western Society males.

Thus it was my 16-year-old son, Rogan, was insistent he construct his new flat-pack Ikea bed and 2 shelving units himself with no help from his father.

We might not have eaten wild boar for dinner, but I still felt a certain pride…

15 comments:

hope said...

I'm glad you let him do it! :)

At 16, I purchased a simple pine, three drawer dresser that you have to assemble. I was so proud of myself, having laid out all the pieces prior to assembly. Dad sent me inside for a phillips head screwdriver and when I returned HE HAD PUT IT TOGETHER! And no, I wasn't gone that long. Although I appreciated it, I needed to prove something to me.

I still have it. When Hubby and I painted the bathroom, I decided it needed a new coat of paint. I took it outside, dusted it off and was in pre-paint mode when Hubby asked me if I could get him something to drink. His knee was bothering him so I did...only to return to find he'd painted it!

Either I need longer legs to walk faster of that thing is cursed. :P

TalesNTypos said...

Lovely Rogan

debra said...

Furniture assembly must be a rite of passage for the generation. My daughter assembled her Ikea futon by herself, too.

A Daft Scots Lass said...

You could've just as well eaten wild boar for dinner.

As parents every wee step needs to be celebrated (no matter what the age).

My girls better be out way before they turn 30.

Mimi and Tilly said...

Rogan sounds ace, and you sound like a fab dad letting him crack on with it. Although I have to disagree slightly with your assessment of the rites of passage thing, as having spent many scary evenings out with friends in Liverpool, I reckon getting drunk in Concert Square in that town is pretty much up there with killing a boar with your own bare hands - getting to the bar without being man-handled is a feat in itself. :)
Em
P.S. Liverpool is very close to my heart and I am loyal to a tea to the place, but having spent time many years going out to clubs and pubs there, I have to speak the truth..!)

Theanne and Baron said...

I applaud Rogan for asking and doing...and you for encouraging him!

Pat said...

Remembering other 16 yr old boys that bodes well for the future. Good on Rogan!

Guyana-Gyal said...

The more I see of young people today, the more hope I feel. You go, Rogan!

Conny said...

Although I am this kind of Mom who has severe problems of letting go babyhood - you really made me looking forward to 16!!!! Love this post!!!!!

savannah said...

well done rogan and dad! ;) xoxoxo

Falak said...

I'm waiting for my brother to come down from India so I can show this to him. He's 17 but still gives me the impression of being 10.

Way to go Rogan!

allencapoferri said...

I remember doing that. I think he's ready.
Do girls have to do anything as a right of passage?

Kim Ayres said...

Hope - when I was younger I always wanted to assemble everything myself, and sometimes used to wonder why my father would let me and not keep the enjoyment for himself. These days I'm quite happy for someone else to build the things :)

Adila - he is :)

Debra - it's just a grown up version of Lego... :)

Gillian - even when we think we've got rid of the older ones, they still keep coming back ;)

Emma - I'm sure the getting wildly drunk thing is still to come, but I'm trying not to think about it...

Theanne & Baron - it was good to let him do it - it let me off the hook :)

Pat - aye, he's a good lad. Not had any major problems with him yet. They'll no doubt come, but I'm enjoying the fact he's not having any major rebellious outbursts yet :)

Guyana-Gyal - well either he's not doing anything too bad, or he's not getting caught - either of which is a reasonable state of being :)

Savannah - thank you :)

Falak - :)

Allen - I don't like to ask...

Carole said...

Only you could compare ritual circumcision with a flint knife to putting furniture together. Rogan is way smart to go the route he did.

Kim Ayres said...

:)