I certainly share the view that people whose lives revolve around symbolic manipulation — including typing — are well served when they have hobbies that require mastery of something real. Carpentry is impressive, of course. As are gardens. But on a daily basis I just don’t think this is a big an issue for women as it is for men since, regardless what else we do most of us have to cook dinner most nights, for a family. Cooking may not leave you with some exquisite, handcrafted thing to show for your labors. But it is certainly hands on, physically real, often a source of pleasure, and, unless your children have better manners than mine, you pretty much always know how well you’ve done. Alas, we can’t all be Hedy Lamarr….
Btw, Derb — I note with amusement that, in relating that the Yemenites have the world’s sixth highest fertility rate you see fit to congratulate the men — Ye Men of Valor. (Valor?) I think the expression Arabs use to congratulate each other on such accomplishments in most of the Arabian Peninsula is the brief but comprehensive, “Strong back!”