Every relationship has to learn how to compromise and find the middle ground for decisions. I got the house style I always wanted. My husband got to install the kitchen of his dreams. And this kitchen remodel (well, more like first floor remodel, but that’s another story) has caused me to reflect on current design for the home.
What I found is that men are more involved in these things than I had previously realized. Browsing through the flooring stores, the home improvement warehouse and the appliance stores I saw couples. I saw men expressing deep interest in faucets and carpets and light fixtures. I realized that manufacturers realize this. They must have realized it a few years ago and I’m just catching up.
There’s a general masculinizing of houses and product design going on. Take for example this new vacuum cleaner: The Dyson DC07. How can a man not look at that and want one. It’s the manliest vacuum I’ve ever seen. It’s got Root8Cyclone(TM) technology! Go there and watch that flash animation about how the suction works and tell me you’re not excited about it! I’m not kidding, did you watch it? It boasts that it’s the only vacuum with a quick draw hose! It’s like a lawnmower for the living room rug.
Parked in our new kitchen is the V6 fucking Volvo of stoves. Intended to survive to the next millennium, it’s a monolith of stainless steel, six 15,000 BTU burners and a six way adjustable convection oven that can hold a whole hog. It’s from Viking. (Yeah, we debated between that a Dacor, but what manly man would chose something called Dacor?) “Viking!” the brochure screams, “It comes with its own spear!” Every man that enters our kitchen growls his approval (and would probably pee on its stout little stainless steel legs if I didn’t keep an eye on them).
Couple that with our sink: All stainless steel, something you’d find in a veterinarian’s office, you could perform surgery on it and then just hose it down. Practical. Poured concrete countertops. Everything is efficient and crisp.
I think I’d have to credit Emeril Lagasse for all this. Think about it. When did cooking for men stop being gay? I mean, men could cook, would cook before. They’ve always cooked and it’s been acceptable socially, but now there’s great macho indulgence in cooking, it’s a sport. Men are no longer relegated to the back yard grill, they can come in the kitchen and cook up a storm there. Sure, there were celebrity chefs before Emeril, James Beard maybe, Paul Prudhomme. But he didn’t embody the gregarious manliness. No, it starts with “Kicking it up another notch” and ends with a “BAM!” and suddenly we’ve got cooking as a collective experience. Something the whole family can enjoy.
Cooking has become a full-contact sport. Credit The Food Network and Iron Chef.