Done with Gender | The Food Party! | Laura Stec | Mountain View Online |

Local Blogs

The Food Party!

By Laura Stec

E-mail Laura Stec

About this blog: I've been attracted to food for good and bad reasons for many years. From eating disorder to east coast culinary school, food has been my passion, profession & nemesis. I've been a sugar addict, a 17-year vegetarian, a food and en...  (More)

View all posts from Laura Stec

Done with Gender

Uploaded: Oct 20, 2019

In the news and the neighborhood, I keep hearing about kids changing their gender, and keep wondering why. Nature makes mistakes now and again to be sure, but it seems more like a popular trend.

Then last weekend happened.

I was at a local watering hole Sunday when a guy asks me to dance. I wasn’t looking to dance, but said sure. The meeting was uneventful - we boogied only a minute before the song ended, thank yous exchanged, and we turned away.

About a half hour later I leave, walking around the building to my car in the back lot, parked very close to a big, black SUV. I turn around to squeeze in, when I see my dance partner coming straight at me, already between the two cars. Face scrunches with rebuff, talk to the hand, and I block by opening the car door. I slip inside - he bellows, “I have no one to talk to,” and while backing up he sweetens the deal with, “I’m single!”

On the drive home, inner-writer kicks in. Who the hell does this guy think he is, and more importantly, who does he think I am? He shouldn’t have tracked me to my car, or caught me between two cars, but what really stood out were his words. One might imagine, “Excuse me, may I ask you a question, or “Excuse me, you are a good dancer,” but no! Mr. Dark Moves pulls out something about himself, with the gall to assume I would care one iota about the emotional well being of a person who just stalked me and blocked me.

I guess it’s all the same. The emotional immaturity that allowed that man to corner me in the dark is the same emotional cluelessness that allowed him to respond vocally only about himself. Both support the idea that he didn’t understand my personal boundaries, which certainly weren’t as important as his needs.

I also wondered what he thought as he walked away? Was he feeling dumb for being an idiot? Or was it more along the lines of, “Bee-ach, she didn’t do what she was supposed to.”

Do you think Dark Moves would have ever chased a guy to his car in search of a supportive ear? I doubt it. Subconsciously he assumed a women should naturally care, rather than naturally slug him in the kisser.

Then I thought about the kids again - so much more aware than we ever were about themselves and the environment around them. Maybe a group revelation is at hand; our children don’t want society assuming anything about who they are. The planet is moving forward and so are they - thinking beyond girl and boy – toward whole person-hood with nuanced diversity. Feeling the weight, but refusing to be labeled into, or limited by gender expectation and expression, they rebel to become the opposite, or both.

So now I’m musing the logic; no plans to change my sex, but I might be done with gender. It seems to get in the way, and the older we get, the more similar we become anyways. I’ll hold the door open, or cry, or pay for you, or nurture, if I feel like it, or not, and please do the same, not because of gender, but despite it. Who knows? We might become more authentic, free spirits, and have more fulfilling relationships as people, rather than just as man or woman. Body parts aside, what if gender is more the societal expectations we've absorbed for years and now blindly project, without cogitation, onto ourselves and others?

But hey, is there a Food Party! in all the promulgation? Guess it’s time for this new “they” to put up their least expected, manliest recipe, which would mean beef and grilling to me, mixed with a side of conjecture.

Beef and Mushroom Skewers
a client favorite, delicious and fast

1 # beef round or chuck
1/3 cup olive oil
¼ cup soy sauce or coconut aminos
1/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 teaspoon mushroom powder*
1 T Dijon
1 T Worcestershire
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 ts each salt and freshly ground pepper
12 mushroom caps, brushed to clean
red onion

Cut beef into one-inch cubes and put in a bowl. Mix olive oil – pepper and pour over beef. Let marinate an hour, or refrigerate overnight.
Cut onion in 1-inch slices and skewer, alternating with mushrooms and beef cubes.

Heat your BBQ and grill 8 – 10 minutes, turning and basting as they cook.

* Mushroom powder offers umami, or the savory taste we get from the non-essential amino acid, glutamic acid. It is found in foods like beef, parmesan cheese, tomato, sea vegetables, peppers, soy sauce and mushrooms. Umami begets umami, so build flavor by combining foods that have glutamic acid. Find bottled umami at Trader Joes in the spice aisle, or grind up dried mushrooms in a Vitamix for less sodium than the bottled version.

photo from the web

What is community worth to you?
Support local journalism.


 +   1 person likes this
Posted by Female Reader, a resident of another community,
on Oct 20, 2019 at 10:01 am

Oh my gosh, Mr. Dark Moves!! How uncomfortable. Those are not good types. Trying to pull you in that way. What a line. Then at the same time, I would feel for them. But normal people do not say that at first. They go about it by learning to respect boundaries.

That guy would give me the creeps and leave a spider web feeling on me. Ugh!!! Thanks for sharing that story. We all have been through this. But that was a new line!!

 +  Like this comment
Posted by Differnet, a resident of Woodside: Woodside Heights,
on Oct 20, 2019 at 8:22 pm

Well that's not what I expected to read tonight.

 +   12 people like this
Posted by MV Teen, a resident of Old Mountain View,
on Oct 21, 2019 at 10:03 am

I appreciate the insights that this blog make about being a women in todays society, however the connection between this and trans kids seems degrading for each issue. Yes, gender makes everyone's (especially women and other oppressed groups) life more difficult, but for me and many other "kids who have changed our gender", the issue is much more complex than described.

 +   8 people like this
Posted by Sometimes, a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood,
on Oct 21, 2019 at 4:22 pm

Sometimes guys are painfully unaware and socially awkward. He may have been summoning up the courage for a while before asking you to dance then you said yes(OMG! Now What!) So he spends the rest of the time trying to figure out how to approach you further. Failing at this once more and angry at himself for his almost paralyzing shyness, he sees you leaving and he puts his foot down. "I have to talk to her before she leaves" so he does so in his clueless and now scary way. As you leave he sees his last chance and emotions pour out "I have no one to talk to".

It reminds me of the scene in Fargo when Marge's old school friend breaks down in the diner after a failed "move" on her: "Oh Marge, <weeping> I'm so lonely!"

Of course, this day and age you MUST assume the person is dangerous, and I'm glad you did, but when thinking about it later, it's more likely that it was just another pathetic attempt at "Trying" from a guy with no clue or social abilities.

 +   4 people like this
Posted by musical, a resident of Palo Verde,
on Oct 22, 2019 at 3:10 am

“The mass of men lead lives of quiet desperation."

 +   1 person likes this
Posted by MV Teen #2, a resident of another community,
on Oct 22, 2019 at 6:52 am

I changed gender and this is interesting. I'm done feeling degraded, now I am empowered! We must know each other.

 +  Like this comment
Posted by Laura Stec, a resident of Portola Valley: other,
on Oct 22, 2019 at 7:11 am

Wow what are the chances of teens reading my column? That's amazing! I feel honored thanks!

 +   3 people like this
Posted by CrescentParkAnon., a resident of Crescent Park,
on Oct 23, 2019 at 9:22 pm

> The planet is moving forward and so are they - thinking beyond girl and boy " toward whole person-hood with nuanced diversity.

One certainly hopes so. Darwin discovered evolution, but I think someone still needs to define and name the force that tends to resist and prevent evolution. We desperately need to study it since our world is in the grips of it.

 +   1 person likes this
Posted by Rick Moen, a resident of Menlo Park: University Heights,
on Oct 27, 2019 at 10:18 pm

Ms. Stec, thank you.

Far too many people batting for the XY team, even those of good will, have absolutely no idea what infuriating nonsense their female friends, co-workers, and relatives have to put up with. It's past time that this sort of abuse got put into the ashcan of history along with other formerly acceptable practices like 'one for the road'. It'll happen sooner if we're all aware and all try to help.

But I'm definitely going to try that delicious-sounding recipe -- as soon as we have breathable air, again.

 +   4 people like this
Posted by USA, a resident of Old Mountain View,
on Oct 28, 2019 at 5:22 pm

So, yet another SJW feels the need to virtue signal at us.

Can we get back to the actual topic of food now?

 +   8 people like this
Posted by Hahaha, a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood,
on Nov 4, 2019 at 11:54 am

Looks like this struck a bit close to home if you're in the angry old man demographic. He even used one of their trigger phrases! LOL!

Follow this blogger.
Sign up to be notified of new posts by this blogger.



Post a comment

Posting an item on Town Square is simple and requires no registration. Just complete this form and hit "submit" and your topic will appear online. Please be respectful and truthful in your postings so Town Square will continue to be a thoughtful gathering place for sharing community information and opinion. All postings are subject to our TERMS OF USE, and may be deleted if deemed inappropriate by our staff.

We prefer that you use your real name, but you may use any "member" name you wish.

Name: *

Select your neighborhood or school community: * Not sure?

Comment: *

Verification code: *
Enter the verification code exactly as shown, using capital and lowercase letters, in the multi-colored box.

*Required Fields

All your news. All in one place. Every day.

Chick-fil-A quietly starts delivering out of DoorDash kitchen in Redwood City
By Elena Kadvany | 45 comments | 7,823 views

Differentiating Grief from Clinical Depression
By Chandrama Anderson | 0 comments | 1,622 views

Palo Altans and their Virtue Signaling
By Sherry Listgarten | 14 comments | 1,535 views