Yesterday something happened. Something weird. Something that left me befuddled. What was this bizarre and perplexing occurrence? Well, that’s what I need your help in figuring out, because I think it may have been some sexism….but I’m not entirely sure.
Picture it: A very busy restaurant at lunchtime. I’m trying to fill up my cup with unsweet iced tea (my favorite) but the drip is running awfully slow and there is a line starting behind me. An employee of the restaurant comes over, asks me to move aside, and then tilts the tea maker so the flow of tea is heavier….then, this employee (a man) says “Sir, if you bring your cup over here I can fill it for you.” Cue confusion on my part. At first, I thought he was talking to me, after all, I was the first in the tea line trying to fill my cup, but then I realize he is gesturing to the man behind me. BEHIND ME. He asked the man who was second in line to fill his cup before the woman who was first in line. Um, what the hell? I was so flummoxed, I didn’t know what to say. The man behind me stepped right in front of me and filled his cup and then went back to his table, then the employee says “Mam, you can fill your cup now.” That time, he was talking to me. Again, what the hell? Why did he give the man behind me cup filling preference? After all, I was the one who had been trying for a hot minute to fill her cup, I was first in line, and I was the one who brought the problem to the employee’s attention. What. The. Hell. Was this some sexism?
I looked up the official definition of sexism and it’s “attitudes or behavior based on traditional stereotypes of sexual roles; discrimination or devaluation based on a person’s sex, as in restricted job opportunities; especially, such discrimination directed against women.” I can’t exactly figure how my cup filling incident plays into this. I mean, there isn’t a gender stereotype that I’m aware of where men prefer iced tea more than woman. And being passed over to fill your cup doesn’t even come close to measuring up to job discrimination or sexual harassment. So, I’m left still feeling baffled. Was this or wasn’t this some sexism?
I turn to you, the gorgeous and all-knowing reader for the answer. Please save me from the over-analyzing that’s happening in my brain right now, my ears are starting to smoke…..