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Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Made By Dad? Uh, No. Not Here.

Dear Fat Brain Toys, Scott Bedford, and Workman Publishing Company,

Perhaps your little graph would show more equitable data if, oh, I don't know, you didn't imply right in the title that only males can build stuff. Are you instructing folk to build these projects with their penises? If not, why the discrimination?

I happen to be the builder in our family. My husband is useless for such things. He does the dishes and laundry. I refinish the furniture, build the bookshelves from scratch, and mow the lawn. He lays the sod, I do the breastfeeding. He kills the bugs and takes out the lizards, I paint the rooms and claim all the tools in the garage as my own. Yin and yang. None of those things require any special male or female characteristics, so I see no reason to put labels on them such as "man chores" or "woman's work."

Sadly, though, you disagree. It's clear that you are, as is typical in our patriarchal society, insinuating (not so subtly) that men are the builders (insert Tim the Toolman grunt here) and women have no place in such macho activities. Pah. Would it have really been so difficult to title the book "Made by Parents" or "Made by Familys," which would've been even more inclusive and would certainly up that precious data?

You want kids' brains to get fat? Stop limiting and relegating them based on their genitalia.

As it is, you've lost a potential customer. My son and I, ever on the lookout for projects to do together, are off to look elsewhere. Have fun building with your penises.


Amy the Toolwoman Mama


  1. Amy:
    As the retailer of this book and over 7,000 other toys we could not agree more - we have asked the publisher to find and/or write a Made By Mom book. We have been searching for something similar to sell from Mom's perspective for a long time. I think this might be a good opportunity for you to write a book. This book is written by a Dad, pertaining to his experiences building with his children. It is a great book for all genders to enjoy. It just happens to be written by a Dad. I hope you give us another shot, as we are not making a statement on gender by selling this book. We are just trying to sell the best toys, games and books to make kids think.

    Thanks for Being a Great Parent,
    Fat Brain Toys

    1. Unfortunately, no, we're not in total agreement. I wouldn't carry a book that carried with it an insinuation that dads only make things. I understand it was written by a dad, that doesn't mean only dads can make the things contained in the book. I would not write a book from a mom's perspective, because I see no reason why being a mom or a dad needs to impact content such as is contained in the book.
      Further, I'm not entirely surprised that you feel we are in agreement. I can tell it's important that kids be given the best. However, your entire store is broken down into boy toys and girl toys. Even without carrying this book, you've created a divide in your store that I simply cannot abide.
      I appreciate you taking the time to write, but, yes, we could agree more...much, much more, sadly.

  2. That is a brilliant idea Fat Brain Toys! You should write a book Amy! Love it! You should make a book out of your 30 things series and write one about how your Amy the Toolwoman Mama. Brilliant.

    1. See my above comment to FBT to see why I cannot take them up on their suggestion.