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When the bill comes are you still a feminist?

09 Mar

Belated women’s day readers. The men need not worry,I am not going to start on a spittle inducing frothing at the mouth post on women’s right. In case you still have misgivings there is always the bright red cross on right top of screen.

Some days ago during random bakar with a friend he asked me “Do you like being a woman?I mean do you wish you were a boy?” For some time I stared at his face like an idiot. 10 years ago the answer to that question was as plain as daylight. But of course I hate being a girl, the weaker sex, make me a boy please..but things have changed over tha last decade and am no longer so sure. Of course there are times I go “Drat, I wish were a boy” but I have increasingly realised those are moments when I wish I were 3 times my bulk and musceles andΒ was wishing to reduce some roadside romeo or smart alec to pulp.

So what gives you ask.

The more things change, the more they remain the same. There are hundreds of women who may have never seen the light of day,killed in their mother’s womb.There are millions who must be waking up each day lamenting their sex. There must be millions of parents who look at the face of their girl child and instead of feeling love must be feeling the reinforcement of a burden.

And then you could be lucky. you could be born in a well to do household with liberal parents. Liberal is a figure of speech of course. Sometimes the distictions are so minute, so well ingrained in the way of life that only an outsider can notice them. Like the science loving daughter opting for conventional arts and getting ready for marriage market while the really-no-Einstein son is sent abroad for a poor ROI MBA. The daughter is a friend of mine from a wealthy-upmarket family. She has never complained to me and would never feel any resentment for her brother. But as a childhood friend I do. Another brilliant friend who wasted a couple of years trying to get into a home state medical college because her parents wouldnt agree to send her to do a medical degree outside. And if these discriminations at home werent enough, random strangers with political clout are always there to put you into place.

This subtle discrimination happens daily. As a women you generally walk with your head down, calling least attention to self,trying to blend into your surroundings. If a group of men walk towards you, you circumvent them. You bundle with other women at the front of a bus.In a train you look for the upper birth and keep yourself there for a 52 hour journey. No eye contacts.

Then there are the not so subtle ones.The arranged marriage market. The social stigma of divorce-never mind a loser husband. The casual ease with which someone can label you a slut for wearing jeans.I can make this a post that never ends but lets not do that.

My personal worst years of my life,something I have tried to wipe away from my memory are my engineering days. Deep recalled our shared nightmare in her post here. Of course, sooner than later I have realised the root of most acrinomy is the green eyed monster. What you cant have..sully it for others-the fox did that to the grapes and we have losers with no brains or personality doing it with our morality. Of course living their lives in tiny self built wells they can only aspire for the life me and my girls have gone on to build for themselves. But sympathies for the women whose life they will proceed to ruin through arranged marriages.

I wanted to write a hapy post about the strength of being a woman and like but I guess I can start feeling the froth slowly.

What I have learnt from my painful experiance is when you cant change the rules play by them and get really good at them. Become so good at walking the tightrope that you do not fall.Β  I was reading Draupadi’s mahabharata and the more I read the more impressed I became. Here was a woman-a queen no lessΒ who was humiliated in front of her five husbands-not one but five of the greatest warriors of the time. Did she have her revenge? She had much more. And she played within the rules.You hate the glass ceiling? Reach it by playing within the rules, and then make sure the rule makers and forced to break it for you.I am not asking the women to be manipulative b**** from an Ekta Kapoor serial. Raise your voice against what is not just but choose your fights. And perhaps most importantly raise it united. What happens at a far away pub in Mangalore can also happen in your city with you.

I know a lot of what I have written may sound obtuse, well you know how woman’s brain work πŸ™‚

XKCD gets it bang on again.

how_it_works

Oh and as for the topic, that’s another interesting question I have faced. I am a feminist with all men except the dad and the boy.In fact I often end up footing the whole bill! Yeah I am also the loser!

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8 Comments

Posted by on March 9, 2009 in Uncategorized

 

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8 responses to “When the bill comes are you still a feminist?

  1. Smita

    March 9, 2009 at 6:58 pm

    I simply loved this post, you know why? Because you haven’t talked about what women shud get etc you have talekd about the ground realities which need to be tackled before anything else.

    Luckily I have a set of parents who never forced anything on me, I wanted to study Arts I was allowed, I wanted to stay alone & work I was allowed but I guess not everybody is as lucky in life.

    Our society is full of prejudice, we HAVE to get married nahin to what will ppl say.

    Revenge or not but we shouldn’t take things as is….It is always better to speak up!!!

    PS I can see u r enjoying POI πŸ˜€

     
  2. Pragnya

    March 9, 2009 at 11:24 pm

    Thanx soooo much babe! these are words right from my hreat that came out in ur post. Lucky. Just lucky. that what we are. right from the right parents, the right school, the right friends… we are just plain lucky. you made my day. I have tears in my eyes that i will wipe off before my mom sees me. πŸ™‚

    For thine is the kingdom, the power and the glory. Amen.

     
  3. Roop Rai

    March 10, 2009 at 12:44 am

    i undershtand fully.

    play within rules.

    use what we have rather than reaching for what is unachievable.

    logical.

     
  4. Neo Kluber

    March 10, 2009 at 3:19 am

    A brilliant post superwoman, especially the fox and grapes part – it’s indeed the root of most acrimony. I can’t see any other reason why men show such disrespect towards women. Some never grow up and take their narrow attitudes from college days to work life as well. There were many instances when I was embarrased and appalled at the actions of some fellow men – even when working with western clients, that too in teams with 60% plus women members. I don’t know why this is mostly an Indian trait, I haven’t seen my western male colleagues show such disrespect towards women, there are very few exceptions though.

     
  5. Silvara

    March 12, 2009 at 3:35 am

    Ohhh….after crying my heart out and wanting to punch a wall after watching Lajja – I am even more aware of how things stay the same.

    I get what ur saying about playing within the rules – I think it was the bone of contention surrounding the PCC (should they chosen that method to make their point?).

    Beat them at their own game. πŸ˜€

     
  6. Roop Rai

    March 13, 2009 at 2:55 am

    hola! how do you stalk readers on wp? i wanna be a stalker tooo!! πŸ˜€ πŸ˜€

     
  7. WSW

    March 13, 2009 at 10:26 am

    @Smita

    Yes it inspired me to pick up Krishna-the God who lived as a man.Lets see how that turns out.

    @Pragnya
    Silly girl! πŸ™‚ Hugs

    @Roop
    I dont know whats logical-its just “optionlessness” I think.

    @Neo
    I guess its there everywhere but Indian conditioning is especially encourages and applauds this kind of behaviour. Those men are looked on as heroes instead of scumbags they are.

    @Silvara
    Decided on WP or not?

    @Roop again πŸ™‚
    Left a comment on ur blog about the stalking πŸ™‚

     
  8. Rohan

    November 20, 2009 at 1:41 pm

    Beautifully written. So true, yet not much can be changed.

    Btw, I was wondering if i know you from college. πŸ™‚

     

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