To be baffled at the male assumption that random women will wish to engage in sexual inuendo

(136 Posts)
Greythorne Thu 13-Jun-13 09:01:01

I do a lot of volunteering at my DCs school. I run a library and send out group emails with class info etc. (We are in France).

Yesterday, I send a group email asking for people to return their DCs library books.

One father replied that he would bring the book to the summer fair on saturday. Fine, says I, I will be running the "throw a sponge at the headmaster" stand, so look out for me there.

Father responds: Ooooh, is that the wet tee shirt stand?
Me: Gosh, I hope not. I will be rescinding my offer of help if so.
Father: Oh, don't say that, you might win!
Me: hmm

WTAF? Why? Why? Why?

I am a forty-something happily married mother running a library (FFS) and still I am seen as a target for sexual banter.

And yet so many women don't want to be feminists. Bangs head on desk.

Greythorne Fri 14-Jun-13 09:47:06

Prom
smile

Obviously, any woman who has tits should accept that random blokes are going to talk about her tits. Uninvited. By email. When they have never met.

Hullygully Fri 14-Jun-13 09:54:46

I think you should have said that Grey, "! am an adult woman and parent running a library and am emailing you from your child's school on school business. I wonder why you felt that an appropriate question to ask?"

Hullygully Fri 14-Jun-13 10:00:43

and send it accidentally to his wife

PromQueenWithin Fri 14-Jun-13 10:04:23

And also <works up head of steam> many posters have agreed that isn't not really a feminist argument, as such.

Email about seeing OP's boobs in wet t-shirt = boundary crossing and rude. Not really a feminist issue, until...

Reason why random man felt this would probably be OK = male entitlement to see all women as willing to engage in sexual banter. Feminist issue.

NotDead Fri 14-Jun-13 10:23:35

it is difficult this as the case mentioned seems crass.. and wet tshirt is such an unrefined joke..but some flirting is sometines ok.. and a good way to bond.. but betterimages there are..headmaster in wet t-shirt..mmm.hot! not 'u have tits huh..huh..'

a woman I used to go out with and flirt with recently balked at something that would have been way into freindship flirting/innuendo the other day..because she was feeling v unsexy and read it as nasty sarcasm...

the answer is that sometimes its ok and funny..sometimes it isnt and that also depends on how well you know each other..the context (in above case it was flirting in organing email thread which is wierd) and on how trustworthy each finds the other..

innuendo noticing happens between same sex friends as well as men to women and women and men. some men are definitely more crass and 'on the buses' and some are more aware and taking the piss out of that stance.. u just need to know when..

NotDead Fri 14-Jun-13 10:24:59

it is difficult this as the case mentioned seems crass.. and wet tshirt is such an unrefined joke..but some flirting is sometines ok.. and a good way to bond.. but betterimages there are..headmaster in wet t-shirt..mmm.hot! not 'u have tits huh..huh..'

a woman I used to go out with and flirt with recently balked at something that would have been way into freindship flirting/innuendo the other day..because she was feeling v unsexy and read it as nasty sarcasm...

the answer is that sometimes its ok and funny..sometimes it isnt and that also depends on how well you know each other..the context (in above case it was flirting in organing email thread which is wierd) and on how trustworthy each finds the other..

innuendo noticing happens between same sex friends as well as men to women and women and men. some men are definitely more crass and 'on the buses' and some are more aware and taking the piss out of that stance.. u just need to know when..

Hullygully Fri 14-Jun-13 10:28:51

oh.dear.lord.

Hullygully Fri 14-Jun-13 10:29:40

It's not "difficult" it's "rude" "crass" "offensive" and "inappropriate"

NotDead Fri 14-Jun-13 10:36:57

yes it is.. but not always. .

Chubfuddler Fri 14-Jun-13 10:39:47

Can we pretty much agree it is always rude and crass to basically proposition a woman you've never met before when emailing her about your children's library books?

NotDead Fri 14-Jun-13 10:42:18

I think what you are saying is that a truly feminist society would have us acting as though we hadn't gone through puberty and never made social misjudgements. I agree that perhaps that ideal is worth working towards but I also think that sometimes silly flirting is fun. The example given is in my opinion crass.. and obv misjudged, but to expand that to a crisis in male female interaction is a bit much.. OP is obv catastrophising.. which is fine.. but building up an eggshell for men to crack seems tiresome to me

NotDead Fri 14-Jun-13 10:43:11

I'd like to email you about your 'library books wink

MalenkyRusskyDrakonchik Fri 14-Jun-13 10:43:35

How immensely stupid do you have to believe the average man is, to think this is 'difficult'?

I do not think men are actually measurably stupider than women. It's almost like there's really no difference at all. So I do not believe they are actually incapable of working out a very simple social situation to everyone's content.

(I really need a snappy one-liner to post all over the place to the effect that people say they don't like feminism being mean to the men. But their attitude to men makes men sound like pond dwellers while I think they're equal human beings. Which of us is the man hater again?)

Hullygully Fri 14-Jun-13 10:43:53

I wonder if you could point out the "catastrophising?"

Redtractoryellowtractor Fri 14-Jun-13 10:43:59

"Some women like DO wish to be engaged in sexual innuendo. How was the father who made these comments to you supposed to know which camp you fell into?"

really?! are you serious. Surely any decent person wouldn't assume they fell into the camp that like it.

NotDead Fri 14-Jun-13 10:44:06

oh no! negative cognition made me do it!!

PromQueenWithin Fri 14-Jun-13 10:44:57

I don't think anyone is disputing that, NotDead. What we're suggesting is that the default really ought to be respect (i.e. no innuendo unless you think its going to be received well)

Waaaaaaa, nasty feminists! How can I know if it is going to be received well? Why can't I just do it because I want to and expect women to be the ones to deal with it if they don't like it? By ignoring it, confronting me or complaining?

Well, if you don't know, err on the side of caution (i.e. respect). No?

Would a man engage in edgy banter (e.g. about gay men) with another man in a position of power over him (e.g. his boss, who could make life difficult if he were offended, and might be gay or have a gay brother or something), if he wasn't pretty damn sure that it would be received well? I seriously, seriously doubt it.

Just apply the same standards to women, and we're all fine.

Hullygully Fri 14-Jun-13 10:45:06

I think what you are saying, notdead, is that you like to get a little twinge in your yfronts by speaking inappropriately to women and would prefer it if they didn't object as you might have to see yourself as a creep and change your behaviour.

NotDead Fri 14-Jun-13 10:45:12

no hully work it out for yourself..sheesh..

Hullygully Fri 14-Jun-13 10:45:59

also, I don't actually believe a word you are saying.

If you do mean what you are saying, you need pills and/or an education of some sort.

Redtractoryellowtractor Fri 14-Jun-13 10:46:35

this was done through email? Why not respont CCing everyone in so they all get to see what a twat he is (including his wife if he has one)?

PromQueenWithin Fri 14-Jun-13 10:48:45

And I bet (in my slightly silly straw boss example) that if you made a joke about gay man to a male boss who found it offensive, you wouldn't react with "well, some men like jokes about gay people, how am I supposed to know you weren't one of those men, it's not my fault you don't have a sense of humour"

SixPackWellies Fri 14-Jun-13 10:51:16

Russky I just figured out it was you! grin

I agree with you OP. It is way out of line, and it is utterly baffling that anyone could think such an exchange is okay.

Have had a few of these myself, and I don't find it flirting or flattering, it is just insulting. Also, it is subconsciously 'putting women in their place' and reminding them that at the end of the day you are just an object.

NotDead Fri 14-Jun-13 10:51:34

nope not saying that..just saying that sone people..including men with men and women with women 'hot sandles sister..yum' etc like to feel attractive and are lifted by comments about attractiveness and flirtyness some hate it and think its a barbed comment about their fat or something and others see it as an expression of some massive issue tgey are focussed on at the time.

This is just a pissed off OP about a crass-ish intercgange she is right to call inappropriate if she wants to.. everyone else is fanning flames and I have been happy to be your foil..you're welcome! grin

Chubfuddler Fri 14-Jun-13 10:52:16

I'd like to email you about your 'library books

That is the worst attempt at a pretend line ever.

Please do not make any attempts to be funny in future. You are not good at it.

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