ON MY MIND: It’s a man’s world after all

On My Mind | Maureen Burns

OK, so I heard a comedian on the radio (1410 AM, free comedy 24/7) say how it’s a man’s world. He said proof is we have Viagra but no cure for breast cancer. I laughed, but then wondered if there are more examples of how it’s a man’s world, after all. I asked a few people and got some great responses.

It was brought up when Viagra first arrived on the scene, insurance covered it but it didn’t cover birth control.

One group of women had just been discussing how men control the remotes.

Diana Jones said, “It has always bugged me that when a married man has an affair and is caught, the woman (unmarried) is shunned. The guy is what … re-elected!”

One reminded me the Taliban (all men) recently killed a woman for committing adultery while her male partner (remember it takes two to tango) received no punishment at all.

Another wrote, “In a variety of my professional roles, women will come up with ideas. Men will nod. In a matter of minutes a man will come up with the same idea and almost in unison, all the men agree and brag about what a brilliant idea it is. I’m just saying!”

She added, “A man will be described as aggressive, but a woman will be described as a b—-. People do not like (allegedly) to work for a woman but will work for the worst male boss in the world without complaining.”

Equal pay between men and women is still not always a reality. I heard a woman complain the other night. She has been an administrative assistant for many years. She has worked for male CEOs of three major companies. She said one was retiring and there were all kinds of accolades and gifts showered upon the guy. She said he always did so well because she and other women were doing so much behind the scenes to get him there. They got no accolades or gifts. Sometimes they didn’t even get a “thanks.”

Janet Potter wrote, “We have a black male as president before having a woman as president. Women fought for child labor laws before they won the right to vote for themselves.” I am reminded that women have not been voting all that long. A couple years ago, my friend Charlotte Miel, was sharing with me what it was like when women got the right to vote. She remembered it well.

Janet finished, “Oh, by the way — delve into the Catholic church — that’s definitely a man’s world.” How right she is. Women can’t be priests. Women can’t be deacons. Don’t get me started.

Bev Geyer wrote, “Most women willingly give up their last name to take their husband’s name when they marry. No one expects that a man will do the same. When a man’s wife dies, other women bring him casseroles to make sure he is fed. When a woman’s husband dies, the last meal cooked for her is likely to be the lunch served at his funeral.”

She followed with a really, really bad one. Spoiler alert — this is definitely a spoiler for all women. “Men lose weight more quickly than women. They get more points at Weight Watchers. They can eat more food and lose more weight.” After this one, do we even need to go on to point out that it’s a man’s world?

Several complained about the long lines women have to wait in to go to the bathroom in public places. Men breeze in and out. Women stand and wait and wait. It seems like this problem could have been planned into the building and probably would have been, if women were doing the plans.

Kean Kaliniak said, “Girls can’t play football, but guys can be cheerleaders and flag girls.”

Mary Wszeborowski sent me the funniest response. “I have lots of lovely hobbies, but none of them make me dress up in funny clothes, and sit in the woods, eating chili, drinking beer and telling dirty jokes. I like the woods, but …! What spectacle on TV three days a week allows me to sprawl in the living room, drinking beer (again), eating nachos and screaming at the TV for hours on end? And what’s the deal with the boy toys? Some men have a garage full of them. Where are my toys? If men don’t shave, it’s sexy. If I grow a crop on my legs, it’s disgusting. Why can’t hairy legs on women be sexy? If a man cries, it’s because he’s “sensitive”, but when a woman cries, she’s a whiny baby. A woman gets sick and she has to get up and soldier on, no time for naps. A man gets sick and it’s always three times worse than she had, and he’s in bed for a week demanding homemade chicken soup and Vicks on his chest.” I guess I don’t have to wonder if Mary has any thoughts on this subject!

But, on the other hand, here’s a male note from Don Wozniak. “I can’t be painted with this brush. My wife doesn’t know where the on/off switch is on the vacuum. She controls the remote. I use it with papal dispensation. The kitchen floor is my job, as is most of the dusting. She is the financial guru. I don’t know who gets paid every month. She plans the meals, does the laundry and remembers vital information and dates. For me, it is a tough concept to think about it being a man’s world.”

And there you have it. I am sure you have thoughts of your own on this, but I will close with a quote by Richard Armour, “Until Eve arrived, this was a man’s world.’

Maureen Burns, a Greenville resident, is a professional speaker and author. Her e-mail address is maureenburns@maureenburns.com.

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