Why do women wear make-up and perfume? Because they’re ugly and they smell. Hahaha hahaha. Hahahahaha oh God hahahaha my sides. Best joke ever. Wait – why aren’t you laughing? That one’s a classic! I thought it would have you rolling in the aisles! Today we’re going to talk about ironic sexism and comedy. Strap the fuck in.
I disappoint men regularly. In real life I disappoint them by forgetting their birthdays or accidentally baking them cakes that turn out to be raw in the middle. Professionally I disappoint men (and non-men) by not replying to their emails quickly enough, or sending invoices dated ‘2016’ because I am forgetful and will probably keep doing that until at least July. I try to fix these little disappointments, at the same time as I try to remind myself that we’re all a bit disappointing sometimes.
But on this blog, there’s one way in which I disappoint men that I have no intention of fixing.
I’m not ashamed of my gender, or any of the subsets within it. There have been plenty of women whose behaviour has horrified me – the obvious example being Thatcher (and I apologise, because mentioning her name has become something like a feminist Godwin’s Law). But of my gender as a whole, I’m not ashamed.
If I were to say I was, I’d probably be told I was letting down the sisterhood. Someone would sigh, shake their head, and repeat that old saying: “women: beware women.” Criticising women as a woman is seen as a poisonous thing, and is subsequently painted as exactly the kind of thing a woman would do: those backstabbing bitches who’ll claw through their sisters to make their way to the top.
I’m not ashamed of women.
However, one of the most common things I hear from guys when I talk about some men’s appalling behaviour is this:
“I am ashamed of my gender.”
I hate it, and I want to explain why…
I’m 100% sure I’ll get shit for this, but I’ve had this sitting in my drafts for ages, and now feels like as good a time as any to crack it out.
I’ve been asked a few times why ‘not all men’ annoys me, and I’ve struggled to explain just why the response seems so illogical. So I wrote a long-winded analogy, in the form of a radio drama. And given that #BlameOneNotAll – a hashtag which aims to shed light on the not-in-any-way-surprising truth that not all men are rapists, I thought now’s as good a time as any.