As a teenager, my brother was scrawny in women's size 2 jeans. Back then, I made him listen to mixed tapes of Ani DiFranco and Tegan and Sara, and if it were possible, he was becoming the best lesbian little brother anyone could wish for.
On the car ride over to Louisiana today, I told Dustin that one thing I always admired about our dad is he never pressed any ideals of masculinity onto Dustin. There was no one way to be a man, no toughness needed.
These days, on the verge of fatherhood himself, my brother has been thinking a lot about masculinity. He's working out a lot, working his way away from 145 up to 190. His arms are too big for my tiny hands to get a grip on. He's also bought himself a distinctly dude car -- a Mustang. He seems quite tickled to be driving it.