One of my ‘resting’ jobs when I wasn’t acting used to be in kids’ entertainment, and I remember often being approached by the little girls when I was dressed as a clown. “Are you a girl?”, they would ask. “Yes,” I’d say. They would furrow their brows: “Girls can’t be clowns!” On a couple of occasions, they even looked around for my clown-husband to make sense of the fact that I was female, red-nosed and on the loose.
Whilst I wouldn’t necessarily recommend clowning as a profession for young girls to aspire to, the fact that they were ruling themselves out of even the most surreal of roles because their default idea of it was male, seems very sad and unnecessary to me. Wouldn’t it be great if girls didn’t have to wait until their twenties, thirties, (forties, fifties, etc…) to realise that all options are open to them??