I love my job. There, said it. Admittedly it took twenty-five years of terrible jobs to find this one, but it’s different. It doesn’t feel like a job, I wake up every morning looking forward to the day and most days I couldn’t tell you which day it was. It’s a good life.
However, once a year they ship us out to a remote location for what is called ‘sales kick-off’. Don’t worry, I’m not a salesperson, but I provide technical expertise for them, so they drag me along. I can’t fly because man wasn’t meant to fly (I used to be able to fly but I’m pretty sure I’ve cheated fate so many times that the next time I get in a plane it will go down), so it involves an epic journey of foreign trains.
Pictured – Spain 🙂
I’ve just come back from this year’s event, seven days in Spain, bringing back a lovely virus that has made me cold, hot, cold, shaky, hot, cold, incoherent, hot and cold. It’s fun in a kinda ‘kill me now’ way.
But I digress. They make us attend various sessions around a number of company things, and this year was the worst. I found myself sat in a hot auditorium with 1100 other employees as an American woman who looked exactly like Heather Locklear, if Heather Locklear had fallen into a hot tub and forgotten to get out for eight hours, and a guest lecturer from some American university who was tiny and held her arms like a stunned T-Rex.
For an hour they lectured us on diversity. And it was hell. Imagine being mansplained by two women who genuinely hate anyone with external genitalia and want to prove how nasty we are as a species. They did mock conversations between women in an office talking about how bad they get treated, showed graphs on the breakdown of gender in the office and how language is terrible for women.
Pictured – me not understanding irony.
As I sat there in male mode, thinking of the times I had modelled maternity wear, as I was lectured on just how bad the male half of the human race was, and, I’m going to be honest, I got a little cross.
I don’t want to break it to anyone reading, but I kinda think I may have somewhat of an insight into sexual politics. I make an effort in my life to be as accommodating as possible, I’ve never subscribed to the biological imperative, I treat my work colleagues equally (well, depending on their competence). So I sat there seething, as two women hatefully pointing out all the flaws in my birth gender, wondering where we had gone wrong.
And it struck me that we all do it. Even within the community we have, which is vast and covers a huge range of different people types, we seem to want to apply political correctness to each other. It comes down to labels, and labels never end well.
Yes, there is a gender divide. It comes from the fact that the majority of the human race is driven by an urge to replicate (it’s a lizard-brain thing) and the fact that women are physically slighter than men means that the male will try to exert dominance over them. Be it physical, mental or manipulative. In return the woman will apply her ways of controlling the situation – manipulation being the most applicable most of the time. For us who inhabit the murky inner-region between the genders, it’s a warzone of missteps and wtf’s.
Pictured – misstep AND wtf.
I’m happy I live here. If someone had gone to the sad, confused little boy who didn’t understand why he had such a strong urge to put on the clothing of the opposite gender and said ‘one day you’ll meet an Israeli transexual who will occasionally transform you into a beautiful woman while you both listen to rock music and you give her technical hints and stock tips’ then it would have been even more confusing. Forget that. A better thought would be if someone had gone to that little kid and said ‘be yourself, f*ck what everyone things or everyone tells you, they don’t live in your head, only you do’. No scratch that too, I’d have grown up a sociopath. Well, more of a sociopath.
Where was I? Oh yeah, the company provided an App for people’s phones where you can rate the lectures. Oddly enough the sexual-diversity one didn’t allow ratings (go figure), *but* it did allow for anonymous comments.
Wow. Just wow. For a start you could almost understand where the lecture was coming from (I work with salespeople, the world’s worst sexists, and the comments reflected that). But I added a comment, safe in the anonymity of borrowing a co-workers phone while he popped outside for a surreptitious fag-break, stating that ‘as a trans-gendered asexual male I was appalled and offended by the content and crassness of the lecture’. Wasn’t much but hellfire, for some reason it genuinely offended me.
Pictured – irony, moi?
Oddly enough I could empathise with both sides, which is a lovely side-effect of whatever causes this schism in my gender personality. He was offended, but so was she. He was offended because he would never treat her like that. She was offended because they, the presenters, had actually sided with the toxic masculinity in portraying the women in the company as downtrodden.
I work with some brilliant women in my job. All of them wouldn’t take the crap described in the lecture without, via words or sharp objects, taking the offenders to task. And none of them had ever had to.
Political correctness gone mad.
Anyway, frocks! It’s been too long since I shimmied my way into a 1940s style house frock and it’s really starting to fray the old inner-housewife. My next session will be something special – I’ve booked an apartment with a kitchen, living area and bedroom, a washing machine, cooker, iron etc. I’m going to have an evening of roleplaying a housewife. That’ll make me re-assess my position on political correctness. Although I’d be quite happy to get myself into the kitchen and cook something for him indoors…..
Pictured – is it sexism when you are the sexist and the object of sexism? Probably, it’s a grey area.
Stay beautiful, true to yourselves and don’t let political correctness make you a gender fascist xxxx