The Old Man On The Mountain

A View From the Backwoods of NH

Boys and Girls

Boys and girls, men and women, from a visual standpoint, what truly is the difference? Oh, we know the physical differences, as they are plainly evident – but what, to you, makes them unique? For me, the difference between a girl and a woman is a simple one, something based not on age, but rather demeanor.

A girl wakes up every morning with the spirit of adventure in her heart and goes to sleep at night with the anticipation of what lies ahead. She can be a woman when she needs to, but that’s not her preference.

A woman wakes up every morning with a determination to follow a plan that she’s mapped out in her mind and goes to sleep at night either contented that her plan succeeded, or discontented that it had not. There is little room for spontaneity, as that can’t be planned.

While both have their attributes, I prefer girls to women. I prefer that spirit of anticipation to the determination of execution.

The same holds true with boys and men. And, while successfully facing the world does require planning and execution, I think I always have, and always will be, that boy with the spirit of adventure.

“When I was a child, I used to speak like a child, think like a child, reason like a child; when I became a man, I did away with childish things.” (Corinthians 13:11) is often quoted as the rite of passage from boy to man, but I can’t comply to that style of thinking.

You could call it the “Peter Pan” syndrome, or the “I don’t want to grow up, I’m a toys-r-us kid” style of thought, but for me, to give up the adventure and anticipation is to give up on life itself. To conform to the model that has been set takes away my individuality and leaves me as nothing more than another brick in the wall that is compliance.

As children, boys and girls, we see the world for the first time through untainted lenses, with an awe of wonderment and a belief that anything is possible. And this is something that I will never be willing to put away.