One of my earliest childhood memories is of a burly, 6’4″ man sewing a red silk cherry tomato onto my ballet recital costume — a lime green “head of lettuce” tutu ensemble. I remember how ridiculous the tiny needle looked in his gigantic hand as he put careful, tiny stitches into the delicate fabric.
“Where’d you learn how to sew?” I asked my dad.
“The army,” he answered as my gaze fell on the rose-laced white sewing kit perched daintily by his side.
Back then, there was normally a much clearer delineation between the work that men and women, dads and moms, do. And a whole army of large, khaki-clothed men threading needles and mending tears (or sewing on silky appliqués, depending on the need) felt like a very revolutionary concept.
Nowadays, gender stereotypes are fading fast, although a video of a multitasking dad still goes viral, and Dove (the people who brought you the “Campaign for Real Beauty,” and “The Movement for Self-Esteem“) has now glommed onto men, talking about all the ways Dads care with their #RealDadMoments digital campaign.