Things that make me really angry #2

A couple of weeks ago, on the train as I travelled to the Barbican, I was reading one of the free evening papers that are thrust at you as you try to make your way to the station. Their content in general is worth less than the paper it’s printed on, the news in it is pretty disposable. But that evening, for only the second time ever in my life, an article caused me to squeal with outrage to the carriage*.

Why such outrage? Well read below and find out why …

city-girl.JPG

Banter? Banter?! How the fuck does getting a colleague to sit on your knee and squeeze her breasts qualify as banter but not sexual assault?

This is some kind of joke right? It should be dripping with sarcasm, right? I’m just not reading it properly, is that possible? Or am I just being ‘politically correct’, you know, because I’m such a left leaning liberal who is “obsessed with equal opportunities” like um … pronouncing names properly, pay parity between sexes and um, the right to not be sexually harrased in the workplace? I’m obviously asking for too much.

I’ve noticed that attitudes to women here are bad, there is no doubt whatsoever that women are regarded as sexual objects. It seems to be okay to tell a woman how she looks, yell comments across from the street, slow the car down to have a look, or on the street stop, stare and whistle. Totally inappropriate jokes (and having worked with comedians, I’m pretty tolerant of offensive jokes …) are fine here, boys will be boys, they’re just having a laugh and being one of the lads is the norm and anyone who thinks differently is a prude, uptight, politically correct.

Oh and if you’re not a sexual object then you must strive to be one of the boys – there’s a thing called Ladettes here … don’t even start me …

*the first time I squealed alound with outrage (for the benefit of the good shoppers of Kilbirnie’s Paper Plus) was with Deborah Coddington’s thing … I don’t even think I can go so far as to call it an article … in North and South, you may remember the one, it’s cover had the Chinese cat of good fortune set on top of a red background and the headline “Asian Angst: Is it time to send some back?”, yes, that’s right on the front cover selling the magazine – for the reaction read here

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2 Responses to “Things that make me really angry #2”

  1. Louise Rae Says:

    Aah yes, I remember the first time a male in the workplace here paid me a compliment and then looked at me with that expectation of thinking they’d just made my day and that I would be glowing with happiness now for having been positively spoken to about my appearance by a male…

    Thankfully my self-esteem sits higher than that, with mostly all erosions caused by media and other women, and therefore not really affected by males at all*.

    *Unless I have a crush on them, in which case I would turn red and giggle girlishly at a compliment.

  2. There are compliments and then there are things said that just feel wrong. It’s the difference between feeling like an object and feeling someone cares about you – it’s a trick of language and intent.

    And the media only bugs me in the sense of television/film programme makers – that whole neurotic working woman idea perpetuated by the likes of Ally McBeal or Bridget Jones (which I guess is meant to be Pride and Prejudice, but Lizzy Bennett was hardly neurotic).

    And articles like this serve as encouragement that this kind of behaviour is ok.

    BTW: “You’re the most beautiful woman in the world” is the best compliment I’ve ever received and one that I obviously cherish (even though predates my last relationship) even though it was given drunkenly, it felt genuine, possibly because his mates jaws dropped when he said it, but again it was a trick of language and intent … I wonder what ever happened to him?

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