Gay Dad is a phrase that gets bandied about round here more often than you'd think. Pretty much always followed by the words, "not that there's anything wrong with that ... " Because there isn't and it's absolutely alright for G to channel his Village People fantasies while wearing his tool belt, which for something so blokey actually does look quite gay. As in camp, the two meanings frequently being muddled eventhough we know they are not one and the same.
So today's manly laundry picture comes from the November 2006 issue of Melbourne's Child which I picked up from the Maternal Health Centre just after the new year. Do you know this is the first laundry image that I've noticed in this magazine since I started Mrs Washalot. Given how much we moaned about laundry at mother's group in the early days, I find that quite amusing. Anyway the article accompanying the image is about some of the dificulties facing gay parents and in particular, the non-biological parent. I'm not going to go into all that, just to agree with the writer, who is quite right when she says that families come in all shapes and sizes and what's important is that the child has a loving family. And that that isn't determined by the gender of the parents. Right.
There are several things that really interest me about this image. For example the ordinariness of the Hills Hoist and the grey paling fence, planting this family firmly in middle suburbia. Albeit, one without a garden, but I think that's down to the digitalised style. I'm asking myself why I find this image so weird. Weell, there's the way the blonde father is holding the baby, which although correct seems somewhat precarious and casual. And the washing, where's the washing? A couple of shirts? Even if they're using disposables, any parents of small babies would have more washing than that at a given moment. Surely.
So the image seems to be speaking to me of the domesticity of new parenthood, placing the gay dads in the usual domestic setting, but with a paucity of tasks. So it just looks barren. Which I don't think was the intention of the article. Or is it about alienation? And being spied on. I don't know but it's a bit spooky.