Yesterday I was forced to attend a seminar for work. Typically you would think that a company would be sending their employees to training such as ‘How To Be More Productive Without Working Overtime’ or maybe ‘Work Smarter, Not Harder’ (what does that mean, anyway??). Not my company. Oh no! Apparently they felt that it would be good for the women in the company to attend training on female empowerment. Yes, I am serious. You’re probably wondering why I’m not jumping for joy at this opportunity. First off, I HATE touchy-feely seminars of any sort. Actually, I hate anything that takes me away from my job and that I feel is a waste of my time. And secondly, out of everybody at work my coworker, the Asshole, would have gotten more out of this seminar than I did. He’s basically a teenaged girl anyway and I can intimidate him with the glare from one eye. Seriously. I’ve done it before. Hehehehe…
Actually, the thing that irritated me the most about this seminar is that it was mandatory. Here they are demanding that we go to this stupid feminist seminar and I don’t want to attend it because I’m already smart enough to know how to empower myself. It reminds me of the Dilbert cartoon where the Pointy-Haired Boss gives Wally and Asok buttons to wear that say “I’m Empowered” (or something similar to that). Asok tells the PHB that he doesn’t want to wear the button and the boss tells him too bad, he has to. After the PHB leaves Wally makes a comment along the lines of, “That’s all you need to know about life right there.” I wish that I could remember it exactly, especially since I have it hanging up in my cubicle at work. Either way, Wally is right. You’re empowered, but only when we aren’t telling you what to do.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m far from being a feminist. I WANT to be spoiled (Jay… are you reading this?? lol). I WANT to have doors held open for me and to get the special treatment that women are often given. With that being said, I have no desire to burn my bra. After all, the girls do NOT need to be freed! That’s a sight that nobody should have to witness. lol. I want to be given the same opportunity as a man would be, but I know that there are limitations to what I can do as compared to a man. For example, I could work my hardest and do a lot of strength training, but when it comes down to it men are able to be more effective fire fighters than women. That’s not a fact, it’s just my own opinion. Yes, there are plenty of strong women out there, but in general a man is going to be able to pull an adult out of a burning building a lot faster than a woman. There are also things that women are better suited for than men. For instance, men should not model hosiery. Women usually have better legs than men, although there are exceptions there as well. For instance, Patrick Swayze had a much better body in women’s clothes in the movie ‘To Wong Foo’ as compared to me. lol. If you think that I’ve just been a little sexist, then too bad. It’s just how I feel. I could be completely wrong, and that’s fine. I’m just being grumpy about having to take four hours out of my day to attend a seminar that I had to bite my tongue so that I wouldn’t make any smart remarks.
To be fair to the instructor, she did a very good job. She had a lot of enthusiasm and love for the topic. Plus, who wouldn’t love to be paid the big bucks to tell women how to handle life’s stresses and how to be more effective at the work place. I didn’t want to tell her that as long as upper management consists of men, that very few ideas from women will actually be acted upon. The instructor told us at the beginning that the seminar would not be an ultra-feminist message that would have us storming out of the room and ready to run over the first man that we saw. However, some of the material that she presented had me wanting to question her motive.
One of the statistics was that women make up the majority of university graduates, and this was said very proudly. The cynic in me wanted to raise my hand and ask, “But in what course work? Is it in anything that matters or are they just throw-away degrees in areas such as psychology, sociology and philosophy? Are they getting degrees for jobs that they can actually go out and do?” Who cares how many women are getting degrees if they are all in areas where they can’t actually use them, so they end up going on welfare or food stamps (which is another article that I’ve read recently and we’re supposed to feel sorry for these idiots who spent all of this time in college getting degrees in NOTHING and then being surprised when they realized there’s no market for them).
The point of this little jaunt down the feminist path was to point out that most women get jobs out of economic necessity and not necessarily to fulfill an aspiration. In other words, most women get jobs but aren’t really satisfied with what they are doing because they want to be doing something different. They work, so they don’t get to spend much time with their family. Yet some women don’t want to spend all day with the kids. I’ve known of a couple women who were on maternity leave and couldn’t wait to get back to work because they were tired of being home. It is expected that a woman can’t truly be satisfied if she is merely a housewife. Again, I wanted to stand up and ask “Why not??” I honestly feel that I would be completely satisfied to be able to stay at home and raise my children (if I had some). Think about it, being a mother or father is a more important job than almost any other in the world. How many people in this world are messed up because they didn’t have good role models at home? How many women have ‘daddy issues’ because they didn’t have a father at home? How many men aren’t taught how to be a man because they didn’t have a father at home to guide them? How many women walk down a path of destruction because their mother didn’t care enough to teach them another way? A parent is the most influential force in their childrens’ lives. When you’re asked to name somebody whom you admire the most, do you automatically name one of your parents? I know that I do. Don’t tell me that being a CEO of a company is more powerful than shaping or molding your child as they grow and develop. I refuse to listen to that kind of an argument.
As the seminar went on the instructor made a comparison of the movie ‘The Wizard of Oz’ to how we live life; when we are home we always want to leave, but then once we are away we always want to return. She was explaining the various points along the way and she wanted to know who the person was who was represented by the brainless scarecrow. I knew what was coming, and yet I cringed anyway when most of the women shouted out, “My husband!” I understand that there’s the generalization out there that husbands are dumb and wives are nags. I get it, but do you always have to play into it? What does that say about a woman who brags/complains about her husband’s stupidity? Obviously she wasn’t bright enough to realize that he was a moron before she married him, so who’s the dummy here? That’s one promise that I’ve made to Jay; no matter how angry we might be at each other that I would never run him down to others. That’s not fair nor respectful to him. Just because he forgot to put the toilet seat down again doesn’t mean that I need to run around telling people how stupid he is and what a brainless idiot I am married to. Since when did the feminist movement give us the okay to bash men?
Before I go off on a tangent I will steer myself back to the topic at hand. We then had to go through and do an exercise where we rated various topics and what priority they were to us. Then we went back through and rated the actual priority that we’re giving to them. Basically what that was supposed to show us is that we may not necessarily be giving the greatest priority to the things that are most important to us. What it taught me was that I already knew this and yet again I felt like my time was being wasted. I know what’s important to me and I make it my priority. Right now my relationship with Jay is high on the priority list, and my job is way lower down. As soon as I can on Friday afternoon I am out the door and headed to Jay’s with work left in my dust. I give so much to my job during the week that I refuse to give it anymore on my weekends. Is that the wrong attitude to have? Maybe, but I’m empowered, remember? lol
Ready for some irony? One of the things she had in the presentation was that we needed to use food as energy and make sure that our body was getting the right nutrition, etc. What did she have in the middle of the tables for us to snack on? Chocolate, candy and peanuts. I was glad that I didn’t have a peanut allergy! She was giving us this plan that is supposed to be wonderful for us and on every slide for the different meals was yet another food item that could kill me. I wanted to tell her that the meal plan would definitely relieve my stress because you can’t be stressed if you’re dead! However, I didn’t make a scene. I behaved myself… unfortunately.
I really tried to find something that I could take out of that seminar so that I could feel like it wasn’t a waste of my time. It didn’t work. I was completely bored. I guess that my parents did a very good job instilling in me the ability to empower myself when needed. They raised me to be independent without relying on others for anything, including telling me that I’m empowered. lol. I didn’t even enjoy it for the social aspect because I’m not a social butterfly. I enjoy my solitary time, or time spent one-on-one. I would much prefer being in Jay’s basement with him as he works on a project, than to be out shopping or clubbing with a bunch of girlfriends. At work I prefer to sit and do my job rather than socialize with a bunch of people who I really don’t have anything in common with them. Why should I waste my time like that? These stupid mandatory seminars do not help to bring me closer with my coworkers, either. It just makes me resent the company for forcing me to do something that I have no interest in doing. It’s stupid and it sucks. So there. lol
Wow. I can’t think of anything to say that won’t turn into a rant, so I’ll just leave it at wow… I guess I’m glad that Panera could barely work out how to get us all to state-mandated food safety training because it meant they didn’t have time to put us through crap like that! (Although I’m pretty sure a few of us would have been exempted anyway… any more “empowered” and our poor GM’s wouldn’t have known what to do with us!)