Despite my complaints about hegemonic masculinity, I'm not an anti-masculinity guy. I love baseball and I've been referred to - only in my 20s, mind you - as a jock more than once. And, of course, there's my ambivalent relationship with hyper-masculine super- and action-heroes.
All that said, there are still some characteristically masculine things that I have a powerful aversion to, probably because they're particularly overdetermined. (In fact, I think that I like things like baseball and superheroes, in part, because they're somewhat problematically associated with masculinity - baseball is mocked as being boring, unathletic, and/or a numbers-game, and superheroes are still pretty geeky.) That is, I resist/resent the kinds of things that guys are just expected to know about or be interested in, even by people with feminist politics.
But this is just a longish way of getting to the point - I hate being expected to know anything about cars. I hate that knowing nothing about them is somehow a knock against my manhood and competency as a male partner and parent. And I just hate the idea of knowing anything about cars. I hate the kind of gruff manliness that's associated with cars, I bristle at conversations about cars, I actively disidentify with the kind of people who tend to be into cars, and I can actually feel an embodied response when the topic even comes up.
So when our car's battery just suddenly died at a gas station and we barely completed the short drive home after being boosted, I was fine with leaving the task of replacing the battery to people who know what they're doing. Because, like I said, I just don't want to know.
Is this unreasonable? I'm sure that it is. It makes a lot of practical sense to know this stuff, and it doesn't look particularly difficult, either. And it's probably dumb to let my somewhat-political-but-more-complicated-than-that relationship with cars get in the way of that.
So, all of the above issues aside, I'm gonna try to replace the damned thing anyway. But I'm gonna hate it every step of the way.