I’d like to start with a disclaimer: there are plenty of people who patronize me. Maybe I have a very patronizable face, I don’t know. However, this post is about all the misguided gentlemen (but by no means the majority) who do so for no other reason than the fact that I’m of the fairer sex.
I was at our favorite dive bar with Jayne a while back, wearing my favorite KISS sweatshirt and generally enjoying our utter dominion over the jukebox, when a couple of college students approached us to join their game of pool. After a lot of pleading, we conceded (despite the fact that we come to the bar to plot world domination and rock out, not to distract ourselves with the hobbies of mortals).
During the game, one gentleman from the group approaches me to inquire whether I actually know and listen to KISS. Ya know, cause I’m wearing a KISS sweatshirt, but it just doesn’t add up in his mind.
Presumably, his thought process went like this: KISS! But…girl. Why? WHY COME GIRL?
Oh, what? No, I don’t know one of the single biggest, most successful bands in history. No, I don’t personally think Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley are awesome dudes. I just thought these four gentlemen in painted faces were so adorable, I simply had to wear them as a fashion statement, teehee.
So, I immediately call him out on it and he tries to save face by suggesting that it’s simply because I’m young–I wasn’t around during KISS’ heyday in the 70s and 80s. I remind him that he’s younger. He does what these sort of people do best: laughs, shrugs it off, and runs away somewhere to nurse his wounded pride.
Another time, just last week, Jayne and I were watching the USA play Ghana at a bar in town (I guess we spend a lot of time in bars). I was grabbing for my food out of the corner of my eye because my chair was turned not toward Jayne (lovely though she may be), but toward the huge T.V. showing the game. I was trying hard not to get ketchup all over the shirt I was wearing–one with a big American flag. I was groaning with the misses and the fouls and was basically unable to take my eyes off the screen, when a gentleman comes up to me and asks, “Do you like soccer?”
Oh, gee. What gave you that impression? I just think all the players are so darn purdy that I watch these silly games to admire them and their sweaty, glistening brows.
I understand that he may have just been trying to start a conversation with some girls, but 1) you wouldn’t interrupt a guy rooting madly for a team, why not show me the same respect? and 2) you think you could start a conversation without patronizing me by sounding so surprised that I like something not traditionally girly?
Basically, some people have a hard time grasping that girls like shit other than pink flowers and butterflies.
When I say that my favorite player is Messi, I get asked if it’s because he’s handsome (for the record: I don’t think he is. Sorry, Lio, you have other great qualities). If I’m exercising at the gym with my boyfriend, a guy will come up to him to instruct him on how I should be doing my squats. Cause, ya know–I can’t be weightlifting of my own interest. If I inquire about a book to a bookseller, he’ll turn to my boyfriend to explain it, because–uh..there’s no way women can appreciate literature. It’s just genetically impossible. There’s science and everything.
So to those gentlemen, I dedicate the following poem.
I like cupcakes, I like flowers,
I like learning about world powers.
I like kittens, I like skirts,
I like debating til it hurts.
I like cocktails, I like walks,
I like watching two men box.
I like learning, World War Two,
And what it means to be a Jew.
I’ve got thoughts I made myself,
And even books upon my shelf.
I know how to read and write,
Tying my shoes won’t take all night.
I know this shocks you; it’s pretty wild,
I’m a grown ass person, not a child.
So talk to me with some respect,
Or I’ll get mad and you’ll be decked.
Drop me a line and tell me what pisses you off. I might write about it (cause I know how to do that and everything).