Friday, March 21, 2008

Not Your Sweetie

Mr b and the kids and I recently went out to Eat n Park for dinner and the waitress kept calling me sweetie and honey and babe. This is something that has always pissed me off. I’m not a particularly formal person, but I don’t care for terms f endearment from someone not sear to me. I find it patronizing and insulting. But I generally keep my mouth shut, because I don’t want to come off as a pompous bitch. Instead, I usually come off as a juvenile, since I tend to answer questions like “how’s your salad, Honey?” with a big smile and a cheery, “It’s great, Sweetcheeks!” or, “Awesome, Lovemuffin” (I’m saving up Sugartits for when I really need it). Anyway, this usually does the trick.

On this particular night, though, I was planning my “Can I get some ketchup, Schmoopy?”, but never got a chance, since the next time she came by, she spoke with mr b – “Do you need more iced tea, Sir?”

Cue needle on record sound…

Excuse me, but Sir? Sir??

I’m Sweetie, Honey and Babe and he is Sir?

You know, if she had been an elderly man, I may be a little less bothered by it. I almost expect it – the concept of “the little woman”, but I have been finding that women are often just as, if not more, sexist than men. I’m tired of giving the check pointedly handed to him. I’m tired of salespeople speaking more to him than me. I’m tired of arguing with customer service people to no avail while he can get results in minutes. I can order my own tires, thank you very much. I can pick out the paint colors all by myself. Don’t tell me about how my husband “has a wife and kids to take care of”, because it’s I who does most of the taking care. Don’t try to sell me credit card insurance so we’re covered if “my husband should lose his job”. I don’t need a pink hammer or (god help me) a pink Steelers jersey. If I’m going to be driving it, tell me about the gas mileage in that model of car, and not the makeup mirrors. No – I don’t want a white zinfandel, I’ll have a Guiness, please. Hard as it may be to believe, I make more money, I have more education and I deserve the same respect, regardless of what parts I have. And if you aren’t married to me, and you’re not my grandma, then goddamit, I am not your Sweetie, Honey or Babe.

I’m not sure why I still find myself amazed at some of the comments I hear from people who are not voting for Hillary Clinton. Don’t get me wrong – many people have legitimate, intelligent opinions on the candidates’ policies and ideas. But I’m talking about the other ones. The ones who – no matter how vehemently deny it – will not be voting for Hillary simply because she has a vagina. The “I don’t think the country is ready for a female president (translation: I don’t want a woman in office) or the “She’s not nurturing enough” (translation: she’s hard and manly, and should be more feminine, like a real woman who should be at home and not in office), or the “She couldn’t even control her husband, how can she run a country (translation: I don’t even know how to translate this one, but it sure has a whiff of honor killing, doesn’t it? I mean – it surely is her fault he cheated, right? So let’s keep her out of office for being so ugly and sucky) and the “we can’t have a woman president because Middle Eastern countries wouldn’t deal with it well (translation: I am a fucking idiot. I mean, good-ole boy petroleum lobby much? Because first off – way to endorse a way of life that not only oppresses women, but completely dismisses them and often enslaves and harms them in ways both physically and psychologically. And as for them not liking it? Fuck them. They can either deal with it or not, but the last time I checked, citizens of the middle eat do not get to vote in our elections. Besides, maybe having a leader that they “won’t deal with” will give us the push we need to get the hell out from under the suffocating control of all things oil. If having a woman in office will leads to some serious thinking and action regarding alternative energy, count me the fuck in.)

And this ? Is this how low we are sinking? Are we so afraid of having a woman in a position of power that we are willing to ignore her viewpoints and ideas and instead focus on humiliating her over her husband’s inability to keep his dick in his pant while he balanced the budget, raised employment rates, reduced poverty and signed the Family and Medical Leave Act?

Look – I’m not saying that you should vote for Hillary because she is a woman – that’s as bad as saying you won’t vote for her because she is a woman. I’m not even saying you should vote for Hillary at all. What I’m saying is that you should vote for a candidate and not their gentials. We’re too good for that.

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3 comments:

jen said...

i agree. we should start acting like it too.

Anonymous said...

Not following the "honor" killing statement, unless you mean that it has the illogic of dishonor killings (i.e., blaming the victim for the sins of the perpetrator).

Ellen R. Sheeley, Author
"Reclaiming Honor in Jordan"

Burgh Baby's Mom said...

I'm actually becoming very worried that at the end of the day, people won't be willing to vote for a female or a black male and will vote for the old white guy just because it's what they have always done. I just want people to know which candidate most closely follows their own belief system, regardless of their physical appearance. Is that too much to ask?

Oh, and I used to go INSANE when a former co-worker used to call me "kiddo." We were both managers on the same level and I was the only one she called "kiddo." Grr . . .