I have always been a tomboy. I have never really been very excited about girly stuff, like having pretty nails, pink things, lace and dresses. When I was a kid, I tended to play more with the boys than with the girls. They just did more interesting things, and had neater stuff. I always preferred playing with matchbox cars and toy trains, pedal cars and tractors, and the boy across the street had G.I. Joe figures and army trucks.
While the girls in the neighborhood were playing house and having tea parties, I was across the street at Patrick’s house playing war and fighting Nazis, and getting captured by the enemies and shot up with truth serum. Patrick was a very cool dude, and his mom was even cooler for allowing me to play with him. When I was a kid, cross-gender play was fairly unheard of and definitely not encouraged, and Patrick was much younger than I was, and sick with leukemia to boot.
My mom always told me to play gently with him, and I did, but one day Patrick got very sick, went away to a big hospital in a big city and never returned, and I have missed him and his G.I. Joe’s ever since.