Fearful Symmetries

Witness a machine turn coffee into pointless ramblings...

09 November, 2011

Welcoming a Boy Into Manhood

This past weekend I found out that my 12 year-old stepson has started listening to Disturbed. All I know about them is that they're a metal band from Chicago and that they did a cover of Genesis' "Land of Confusion". Prior to this revelation, he only listened to early Beatles ("Love Me Do", "Eight Days a Week", &c.) as far as I knew. I guess the testosterone is flowing.

With puberty immanent, I've been thinking about how to celebrate his first step into manhood. American WASPy culture doesn't have much in the way of rituals to celebrate entrance into puberty. A talk about birds and bees or a trip to the store for tampons is about all this culture can offer. There's no equivalent of Bar/Bat Mitzvahs for us gentiles. I had a friend who's Catholic family had him confirmed when he was around 12 but I'm not sure confirmation really counts. And we're not Catholic.

Looking around the Net, I see that some cultures initiate boys into manhood with a beating or a tattoo. While I think a beating would do the kid good, that won't fly. And neither will taking him to a brothel. I've gotta find something good and manly. I don't hunt so I can't take him deer hunting. I'd take him camping and let him do some fishing and maybe shoot a real gun for the first time but it's too late in the season.

I never had a Welcome to Manhood rite so I've no personal experience to draw upon. Maybe I could take him to a bar like Wiggies, buy him a root beer, and then take him to an R-rated movie.

Somebody help me out here with suggestions.
|| Palmer, 4:38 PM


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