April 11, 2006

ERA Now — If Sally Fields Had Done It, It Would Have Worked

Posted in Office Hijinks at 8:40 pm by devilwearsbrooksbrothers

In high school, I wanted to go to a Red Hot Chili Pepper’s concert. Unfortunately the concert was the night before the AP English exam and so my parents emphatically put the kibosh on that plan. While in hindsight I see their point, at the time I was a 17 year old brat who couldn’t understand how my parent’s could deny me this opportunity to see Anthony, Dave, Flea and Chad. They were hateful awful people and to show them how disappointed in them I was, I went to my father’s stereo system, put in my Pearl Jam VS CD, pressed the “up” button until it got to “Daughter” put that song on repeat and turned up the volume all the way. I then went up to my room and waited for my father to come home from work, hear the song and have what seemed to me to be a natural understanding of the severity of his actions and change his mind about letting me go to the concert.

Instead, my father came home, heard his stereo playing some “noise at an ungodly level” screamed into the near empty house as to what was going on, walked to the stereo and shut the power off. At the exact moment my disappointment sank in so did the realization that my plan was doomed to fail from the start. My father had no idea who Pearl Jam was, what they sang and certainly wasn’t going to recognize the lyrics. Even if he had walked in at exactly the moment that Eddie wailed “Don’t call me daughter” I sincerely doubt the words would have resonated with my father, especially at that volume.

You would think that such an early failure at the passive protest would have taught me something. Unfortunately, it didn’t.
Recently, it was brought to my attention that the workload at the office was being unfairly split down the women’s work/men’s work line. In other words, while women were doing their own typing, men weren’t being held to that same standard. Outraged, as my women’s studies professors taught me to be, the next day I donned slacks, a button down and a tie. I pulled my hair back tight, put my glasses on and sat primly at my desk waiting for someone to comment.
And oh how they commented.

“Oh you look so nice, who are you trying to impress?”

“Don’t you look studious.”

“You look hot.”

“I like your tie.”

I had started that morning ready to fight the phallacracy and before I had finished my coffee I had created a new fashion trend.

Boiling over with anger, I decided I had to speak with my boss. He was calm and cool as he told me he would speak to those involved and asked me if there was anything else.

By noon a new system was in place such that men and women would be typing their own letters, unless of course those men and women had assistants in which case their assistants would be typing their letters. Still, the eyebrow raising practices were halted, and my boss apologized for missing the sarcasm run amok in my fashion statement.

So the lesson learned today, ladies look for menswear to be hot next season. What, you thought I would finally resolve to put to pasture the passive protest. Not a chance. My life will resemble a Hollywood movie one day, god-willing. And until that day, look for me to continue my silly stunts in an effort to make that dream come true.

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