Boys will be boys, but only if they get outside where they belong and off the God damned Ritalin.
Boys aren't girls. They're genetically different, and need to be treated differently and raised differently. Boys like bugs and dirt clods and farts, but they also need tales of loyalty and courage and honor and adventure and, yes, violence. They compete, and physically. They like to blow shit up. They like systems that are clear and cut-and-dried. They like straightforward thinking. That's why they invented math and science and railroads and stuff.
"The Dangerous Book for Boys," which recalls the boys' how-to manuals of the early 20th century, is a shameless -- what's to be ashamed
of, after all? -- celebration of boyness. Among the gems boys will find here:
- Every boy needs a Swiss army knife, matches and a magnifying glass
- How to shoot, skin, cook and eat a rabbit and tan its skin
- What maritime signal flags mean
- A chapter on artillery
- Famous battles and the strategies that won them
- How to treat girls
- First aid tips
- Identifying cloud formations
- How a sailboat sails against the wind
- How to make a battery out a roll of quarters
- How to skip stones across a pond
- Lessons in Navajo code-talking
- Good grammar
Fifty years of feminization -- notice I didn't say feminism
, which in its finest form is quite a different thing that simply seeks to redress a few ancient wrongs and assure women enjoy the same rights as men -- have attempted to strip boys of their essential boyness, and with disastrous effect. It's no wonder that losing wars
is now considered acceptable, even inevitable when we live in a culture that insists that every kid on a bike has got to wear a helmet, of all things, and that rambunctious boys are put on drugs to "help" them "manage" their emotions (and in classrooms where kids get only a few minutes of recess a day, for crying out loud); where TV is used as a surrogate for parenthood and computer games act as stand-ins for real, hands-on learning.
We've become a civilization of pussies and cowards, coddled by an elite of by limp-wristed "effeminazis" of both genders.
That's what makes "The Dangerous Book for Boys" so refreshing. While aimed at boys, it's really a book about manhood and about what kind of men we want to be. It's not the slobbering, pizza-stuffing, slobovian "manliness" of the sort exhibited on "The Man Show" and in ads for cheap beer. It's the old fashioned type of manhood; the type the prizes actions with honor and adventure tempered by discipline -- with a lot of laughter and a few nasty scrapes along the way. And it's a damned fine book, one you'll enjoy whether you're a boy or a tom-boy or a just a girl who likes real boys