THE GRILLED CHEESE SANDWICH AS HEROIC INITIATION

When I say I was preparing supper for my sons and I (and the small legion coming over to do battle against the Setites in order to save Quodeth and Thule) what I mean is that I was opening cans and dumping their contents into the slow cooker along with a few sliced up potatoes and some broccoli. (Recipe to follow

My youngest son, the ten year old animal right’s activist, was working on his cursive by writing a letter to his cousin. Then, as if summoned by some long dead (or as yet unborn) God of Blogging, he informed me that he was hungry.
“Could you make your own sandwich?” I asked.
”I don’t know how,” he answered.
At first, I was tempted to simply tell him to put some cheese on some bread and call it lunch but I love the little SJW in training so, instead, I told him it was time to learn. And then we got out the pan and the bread and cheese, the butter, the spatula and the lessons began.
Those lessons had almost nothing to do with making a cheese sandwich.
I suppose there are many paths to subservience. It used to be, I think, that the Hegelian model, most accurately reflected reality. Two men meet in conflict, the one who finds it preferable to submit rather than die will find himself a serf…and his children serfs. Hegel imagined this was a physical or martial conflict in most instances and actually postulated it as the source of the aristocracy, but this sword cuts both ways.
Anyway, I was looking at my son sitting there hungry and, in his own mind, at least, helpless. Is there any greater vulnerability than to need food and find it necessary to ask another to supply it? Is that not the exact situation he was in?
And if you are in that situation, dependent on another for the basics of shelter, food, or physical safety, you are forced to comply with that other’s demands or simply rely on the uncertainty of their charity. 
We write and think so much about what it means to be a man and prowess, self-sufficiency, basic competence (strength, courage, mastery, honor) form the core of adulthood. By denying the need to provide certain basics for one’s self, the Empire denies the need to secure adult responsibility and the strength and rights that come with adulthood.
We ask sometimes why men aren’t what they used to be. Why has the pussification of the Western Man (and the Eastern Man as well as evidenced by the “Herbivore Men” phenomenon in Japan) proceeded so completely?
Boys in the Empire do not become men because they do not have to.
Modern society does not need the boy to hunt for food. They do not need him to protect himself from the criminal. It has no interest in whether he is smart or strong beyond what it requires of him as a cog in an industrial machine and a loyal, easily sacrificed, obedient citizen. This strength is all it will accept. The potential for rebellion IS rebellion.
The duty of a parent is to prepare a child for independence. The state has no such interest. They only benefit if the child remains a child. This would put the state and the parent at odds, but the parent is now also a part of that Empire and only teaches the child to be independent within the confines of the Imperial Will.
The Empire no longer seeks to beat men into submission. That is, it no longer needs to beat boys into perpetual boyhood.
Instead it seduces him into submission, it seduces him into giving up those rights and privileges which come with strength and prowess and cunning. In return, it offers him easy access to the safety and security he would have struggled for anyway. He can now play XBox and surf porn on the internet rather than making war and flirting with beautiful women.
How do fathers choose this for their sons?
How does a generation of men, my generation, even those who forfeit a real life for the ease of pornhub and the joys of cable TV, decide this is the life they will prepare their sons for?
Fuck. Who am I kidding? What fathers? Even my own son lives a thousand miles away in California with his mother. Denied access to martial arts and sports while given Star Wars games for his XBox and plastic weapons he isn’t allowed to take to the park.
This is the will of the courts and the courts serve the empire.
So, that day, he and I made a grilled cheese sandwich. He did all the work. I got the butter out and cut it, but he put it in the skillet. He opened the cheese slices and put them on the bread. He did the work. He turned the sandwich over until it was brown on both sides and the cheese was melted.
That day he took that one small step toward being a free man.
I love you and I miss you, Kai.
Fuck the Empire. 

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