The last time I got pulled over it was well deserved. I was speeding, by a lot, and was totally grooving with my little zippy car, the tunes and the feel of the road. I didn’t cry. Didn’t make up some stupid story – you know the ones ladies – I have diarrhea, I have an emergency at home, I’m late for work, my aunt “Flo” arrived unexpectedly etc…etc…. or the other hand of showing cleavage, balling my eyes out, or flirting. I admitted what I was doing and was prepared for the consequences of my actions.
You see ladies, we have all used our sexuality whenever we have needed it to get us out of all sorts of things, not just speeding tickets. Crying has become an excuse for getting everything from additional discounts, to getting things for free. Same goes for body language and flirting. God help a man when a woman begins to cry. You can see them beginning to shift in their shoes, cold sweat building up, the uncomfortable silence of what to say…please say something that will make her stop before the whole water works becomes Niagara Falls. From one woman to another its disgustingly gross.
Have I done it. You bet. The crying, no. Batting my lashes or flaunting my cleavage, yep. Mostly on my husband though. I do know and am fully aware that at some moments in my career I got away with some behavior that would not have been seen as professional. Maybe participating in a joke, or flirting with someone that I know would take or give me an easier task because I did participate. All by my choice.
My point and where I am going I hope is becoming clear. We have taken many men to task for their lewd and inappropriate behavior. We need to look in our own closets ladies. There is a very clear line between inappropriate behavior and sexual assault. I have been smacked on the ass in a teasing joking manner, received and told dirty jokes, flirted and been flirted with, harmlessly. All of these were inappropriate behavior. Were they fun and funny at the time, yes. Did I believe I was in danger, no. Taken advantage of, no. Used as a benefit to hold a promotion over my head, no. If at any time I had felt that I was being harmed or hurt, personally or professionally, I would have spoken up about it immediately.
But here is the point, why are we so friggin’ sensitive? Come on. You are going to tell me that Senator Franken is different than any one of us? You are telling me that as per the above comments, you have not participated in any of the
listed actions? If someone were to have captured it on camera or on speaker, you wouldn’t be even slightly embarrassed? I know I would. We have become so sensitive that the line is fading and the real danger here is that “actual” sexual assault will be downplayed or desensitized in society and therefor we will lose sight of the gravity of it. It is grave! For both women and men. Should a billionaire/television host/President ever think that he could grab my crotch without permission “just because he can”, he would be awfully surprised at how quickly the swelling would appear around his eye. But tell me a dirty joke or flirt with me and I might just return the favour, harmlessly.
We need to step back. Stop what we as women are doing as well. If you aren’t comfortable with dirty jokes and flirty conversations, then don’t engage them. If you feel you have to, then you need to ask yourself why? No one is making you. You have choices. If its in the workplace then talk to HR about it. If you feel you can’t because of retaliation. Then I am going to tell you there is a bigger problem happening and the dirty jokes and flirting aren’t the big issues that need to be dealt with.
Let’s get a grip and realize what we are doing here. As someone who has been sexual assaulted , I look at these “events” as petty and harmless and they have been taken out of context. Bad jokes are sometimes just that, bad. Just as crying crocodile tears to a policeman in hopes he gets uncomfortable and doesn’t ticket you. Everyone can read the room, the odd one can’t. If life is going to get this serious then I think I’ll make a great living as a hermit somewhere else and you can only come around if you check your sensitivity at the door and pick up a good sense of humour.
Until next time,