Tag Archives: gender

TalkBlock

If you are capable of speaking but remain incapable of being heard, it is because you are doing one or more of the following things wrong. If you want to overcome your #TalkBlock, check all boxes that apply and correct yourself accordingly.TalkBlock

  • Are You a Woman? Are you visibly, identifiably, physically female?

The first thing you probably did wrong was being born a girl. This was one of the first and wrongest choices that you’ve ever made. Typical. Women are always wrong. At least you got that right.

But don’t fret. This condition can be corrected. The more female you sound and appear, the less likely people are to hear you. Try looking a little bit less feminine, and lowering your voice. Or try composing a written message instead, using one of those revolutionary BIC “For Her” pens. Speaking verbally in person can be distracting because your female physical presence will inevitably steal the show, leaving your message, as usual, ignored. Surely ink on paper poses less of a distraction. Although, without the tits and ass attached, your message may go entirely unnoticed.

 

  • Are You Speaking To A Man?

This was undoubtedly your next biggest mistake. Men are statistically the least likely to hear you, whoever you may be. Try presenting your message in the form of an ESPN report or sports commentary. Or booty call.

 

Most men don’t hear these words. The more entitled the man, the more immunity he’s built to your denial, and the more his ears have adapted to filter out these words. Don’t even bother.

 

  • Are You Saying What You Think or How You Feel?

Unless you are a man, what you think and how you feel mean nothing, and no one wants to hear. Just stop. If you are a woman, opinions are for men to have, and you to live with.

 

  • Do The Words You’re Saying Simply Have No Value?

Did you answer yes to the first question (Are you a woman)? If you are a woman, most people can safely assume the words you’re saying are a) wrong, b) stupid or c) otherwise completely valueless. Try saying the same words, as a man, or finding a man to say them for you, so that your words will not only be audible, but also indisputably true and correct, wise, and undeniably profound.
If you have any questions or concerns, don’t hesitate to share / ask. EspressYourself is owned and operated by a woman, so she’ll be sure to actually hear you.

 

Message In a Bottle

Papa Snow and Teacher Sarah, preaching equal rights to pink, whatever your gender
Papa Snow and Teacher Sarah, preaching equal rights to pink, whatever your gender

Last week, one of my preschoolers wanted to tell me a funny story. She dragged me over to the lunchbox cubbies, and grabbed a pink water bottle out of one of the other kid’s cubbies. She said, “Johnny brought a girl’s water bottle to school today. That’s so funny.” She smiled at me, impressed with her witty observation. Meanwhile, I’m trying to figure out how to tell her that she’s wrong.

Maybe other teachers might hear her comment and shrug it off as not-a-big-deal. But I am not that kind of teacher. I think it’s a big deal because the same logic that tells kids that “pink is a girl’s color” is also telling them girls can’t be good at math or science. And I don’t want any of my kids to think they can’t do something because they’re a girl, or because they’re a boy, or they don’t fit the gender binary. I want Johnny to proudly and confidently drink from a pink water bottle if he wants to, and I don’t want any of my kids to be confined to gender stereotypes.

I don’t want Susie to walk away, thinking Johnny’s pink water bottle is a laughing matter. But I can’t just say “Susie, pink is for everyone. The idea that pink is for girls is a gender stereotype. And I don’t want you to be trapped by stereotypes because I want you to grow up to be your own authentic self.” First of all, she’s four and she won’t understand what a gender stereotype is. And second, she perceives that the fact that pink is for girls is an indisputable truth. She’s observed our cultures and listened to adults in her life and now she believes that pink is for girls. I can’t argue against a whole lifetime of her experiences that imply pink is for girls. There’s no real reason behind it. And how do you argue against a fact that has no reason behind it? You don’t. You challenge it. So I asked her a question.

I asked her, “Why is it a girl’s water bottle?”

Susie stared at me, thrown off. Finally she responded, “Because it’s pink. And pink is a girl’s color.” She’s happy she got the question correct.

And I ask her another question: “Why is pink a girl’s color?”

Susie was silent. Most of the time, I ask the kids questions I already know the answer to, and there’s only one correct response. This time, I asked her a question with no correct answer.

Finally she said, “I don’t know.”

She looked to me for the answer, and I said, “Then why can’t Johnny have a pink bottle?” I don’t answer her question. I let her sit with the uncertainty. Maybe that uncertainty will make her hesitate the next time she assumes. Maybe the uncertainty will challenge future patterns she observes, leaving her instead wondering why.

I put the water bottle back in Johnny’s cubbie and smiled at Susie. She smiled back at me, uncomfortable with my unanswered question. Soon, she was distracted by a trampoline, the pink bottle quickly forgotten. Or maybe not. I don’t know if what I said made an impact on her.  All I can do is try to make a teaching moment out of the experience.

But often times, a teaching moment for the kids is also a teaching moment for me. Because I also live in a culture that has implicitly shaped my views and I have “truths” that I’ve just accepted as fact. And all I can hope is someone will come and ask me why, because that’s where the conversation starts.

Dakota Snow, Daughter of Papa Snow, was privileged to grow up knowing it's okay for anyone to drink from pink, whether a boy, girl, man, woman, or faceless ball of hair
Dakota Snow (D$), daughter of Papa Snow, was privileged to grow up knowing it’s okay for anyone to drink from pink, whether a boy, a girl, a man, a woman, or a faceless ball of hair

Lion Queen

I recently read about a lioness with the roar and mane of a male lion. The belief is that she, and a few other known female lions, have adopted these male attributes because they give them an evolutionary advantage. These ladies look and sound like males, making them more of a threat, and therefore better able to protect their young. It’s nice to know other species adhere to the same patriarchy we do. In any case, it made me wonder what male attributes I have adopted that might give me some societal advantage. (When I say “male attributes,” I don’t necessarily mean innately male traits. I sometimes refer to attributes society prescribes to and associated with men. Let the stereotypes ensue.)

 

TALK LIKE A MAN

Speak up. Be loud. Say no. Don’t wait to be asked. Don’t wait to speak until spoken to. Don’t apologize. And don’t return that bitch’s calls.

 

PLAY LIKE A MAN

Player. Not slut. Not whore. Note the distinction. I’m also known to be a real “gentleman.” I hold doors open for anyone, regardless of their gender. It’s called common courtesy.

 

MY FLAT CHEST

It’s no secret that I have small breasts. I spent years in denial, waiting for my boobs to bloom. Following years were spent despising women with big breasts. Which seemed to be most women. However, recent years have been spent loving my breasts just as they are. And whereas some women are barely seen or heard behind their breasts, my flat chest makes the rest of me more visible. If small breasts mean people take me more seriously, then yes, they give me an advantage. Sadly, we live in a world where big breasts tend to distract us from the women they’re attached to.

 

MY HULK HANDS

Don’t be fooled by my spaghetti arms, because they carry hands of steel. As a 9-month-old baby I was known by my parents to lift large, heavy objects. True story. I can shred chicken with my bare fingers, fresh out of the oven. As a barista, my fingertips are no longer affected by temperature. My nails are long, thick, and hard, not unlike the perfect cock. I am a hazard to touch-screen technology. My hands are tough, cracked, callused, muscular and meaty. Manly hands, one might say, but nonetheless, a woman’s touch. Whatever that means.

 

MY HOBBIT FEET

Similarly to my hulk hands, my hobbit feet are fortified beneath impenetrable calluses, extending clear across the bottom of each foot, rendering shoes unnecessary. Whereas women may be known to wear their hearts on their sleeves, I wear my soles on my bare feet. Whether my refusal to wear shoes resulted in the subsequent toughness of my feet, or the toughness of my feet predisposed me to prefer not to wear shoes remains unknown. I drive, climb boulders and walk my dog barefoot. Born in the year of the monkey, my hobbit feet have also been deemed monkey feet on behalf of their extraordinary grip. I wear size ten. You know what they say about a woman with big feet? …Nothing. Because the men get all the press.

 

MY DADDY’S MANEPink

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