Throughout the history of mankind, societies have traditionally been ruled by men. Over the past few centuries, women have become increasingly frustrated with being oppressed and have begun fighting for equality. In more recent years, this has been achieved by protesting for the right to vote, the right to receive equal pay and the right to wear pants on a regular basis.
While great progress has been made in the quest for equality, there are a few things that I believe are continuing to hold us back. Men have been the recipients of unfair advantages for years and it’s just not right. Many of these advantages are obvious:
- Not being expected to both work and care for children, pets and home
- Ability to watch sad movies without sobbing
- Inability to give birth
- Ability to pee outdoors with ease
However, some advantages are far less noticeable to the average woman. Unfortunately, because these issues aren’t readily apparent, corrective action has not yet been taken. Girls, it’s time for change!
While reading about these unfair advantages, I suggest you ask yourself if you have missed any significant opportunities as a result of men being so lucky. If the answer is “yes,” find a man to yell at over it (but please, don’t tell him whose idea that was).
Unfair Advantage #1: Dictator-like control over indoor temperature
As a young girl, I could remember waking up in a cold house, reaching for something warm to wear for the journey from my bed to the bathroom. As I grew older, I found out that the temperature in the house could actually be controlled by a little dial next to the coat closet. I couldn’t understand why we were living in such harsh conditions if it didn’t have to be that way. I eventually learned that we kept it so cold because my dad found this to be “comfortable.” Hmm…maybe I wasn’t paying attention in class the day we learned the definition of “comfortable.” I assumed he was just very warm-natured and I was willing to make a sacrifice if that were the case. I could make it through 18 years of frigid existence as long as I could look forward to a future in which those I would share living, schooling or work space with also enjoyed living in toasty peace.
Those were hollow dreams. I went on to college, where I consistently carried at least one heavy sweater or jacket with me at all times. Do you know how hard it is to do well on an essay test when your fingers are so cold you can barely scribble your name? If you’re a guy, no, you don’t know. This thought has never even crossed your mind, because you consider a 65 degree classroom to be pleasant. You also probably scored higher than me on said test because your brain power was spent focusing on the questions, while my brain was focused on mere survival. I have actually raced through tests and quizzes before so that I could escape to a warmer environment. And you know who suffered most as a result of such mistreatment? My GPA. I wonder what scholarships or awards I missed out on. I guess I’ll never know.
I frequently experience the same discrimination now that I’m a working girl (not that kind). I typically work in a conference room with 2-10 other people, and more often than not, at least one of these people is male. Well, guess who gets to control the thermostat? Yes, the man. Sometimes if I get there first I’ll adjust the temperature to a moderate 73 degrees or so. I’ll work happily for about an hour until a male states that he’s burning up. Before I know it I’m sitting in what feels like a walk-in freezer.
Men- I don’t take issue with your thinking 85 degrees is too warm. I get it. I’ll never experience pure comfort as long as a guy is in the same vicinity. However, I do object to your overly-used statement that it’s better to be cold than hot. Of course nobody can work well when it’s too warm, but I don’t think you understand how difficult it is for us girls to work when we’re so cold. Men say that you can always put on more clothes but you can’t always take more off. Again, I get it. But what exactly do you want me to do when A/C gusts are causing my body to shut down? I can only wear so many sweaters without looking completely ridiculous, not that that even matters at the point when your bones are cold. And guess what? I can’t exactly put a blanket over my face. Perhaps you’d like me to wear a ski-mask while I work? Trust me, I would love to if it were socially acceptable. In the meantime, I’ll continue to sip on hot beverages throughout the day, hoping that they’ll assist in the thawing process.
So, at what point is this temperature thing straight up discrimination? Sometimes I feel that men are trying to make me quit as a result of torturous working conditions. Men, we’re really not asking for that much, just a happy medium.
Unfair Advantage #2: The Clothing Situation
You know how couples joke about how the man only gets a fraction of the closet space that the woman gets? There’s a reason for that: women are expected to maintain a high degree of clothing variety, while guys can rotate the same three outfits for all of their adult life and nobody would even notice. Over time, this can take a serious toll on a woman’s chances of success. We have four major clothing-related hurdles standing between us and our goals:
- The cost of clothing: On average, women spend approximately 17 times the amount of money on clothes that men do. This severely impacts our savings rate, which in turn reduces how much we invest and causes us to have to retire 4 years later than men.
- The requirement to match: It is very difficult for a man to screw up when it comes to matching his clothes. When you have 3 pairs of khakis and 5 button-up shirts, the chances of them going together is pretty high. On the other hand, women are faced with the great challenge of deciding which of 20 pairs of pants or skirts goes with one of 50 shirts. This may be considered “fun” to some, but not this chick. My friends and I are currently campaigning to get the accounting profession to adopt the use of scrubs for this very reason.
- Shopping: I know that most girls love shopping, but I find it to be a necessary evil. I would rather do anything else than shop. Once again, the guys lucked out with this one. There are many reasons I dread shopping, but the main reason is that it’s close to impossible to find clothes that fit. But not for men. A man can either a) go into a store, pick out a shirt without trying it on, pay and be out the door all within 15 minutes or b) wait for his wife to come home with new clothes for him. That must be the life. This, however, is the typical shopping experience for some of us:
- Decide you need to go shopping
- Schedule a shopping trip for the coming weekend
- When weekend comes, get hives just thinking about going shopping
- Four weeks later, finally go to mall
- Try on 23 articles of clothing, only to be reminded that you have a freak body since nothing fits
- Cry a little in the dressing room
- Try on 14 more articles of clothing
- Finally cave and purchase one or two things even though they look terrible
- Pay a small fortune
- Return clothes next weekend
- Vow never to go shopping again
- The pain: Men, do you ever wonder why your wife/girlfriend is on edge at the end of the day? I’ll tell you why. She’s been walking around town all day in “shoes,” which I think should actually be called “pain makers.” Something is truly amiss in the world when we have the choice to wear semi-unstylish shoes that enable us to walk (as shoes were intended to do) or to wear cute shoes that make our feet BLEED, and we repeatedly choose the latter. I don’t know how this whole high-heel business started, but I don’t get the impression that guys are on our side. If they have a choice to ask out a girl wearing heels or a girl wearing flats, he’s gonna pick the one with heels.* Guys also get to wear socks daily. This is enough to make me consider a risky and fairly controversial operation. I LOVE socks, but alas, the use of socks by women still isn’t widely accepted in the workplace. This is another reason men stay warmer than women, by the way.
Unfair Advantage #3: Having all the time in the World
According to my calculations, women spend a total of 2 more hours each day getting ready in the morning and for bed than men do. This equates to men getting 10 additional hours of sleep during the week. Are you kidding me?! This is the greatest discriminatory injustice of all. So, if women are already comparable in work performance, what does this mean? It means that those feminists of yesteryear had it wrong all along. We don’t deserve equal pay for equal jobs, we deserve more pay. We are exhausted. And I’ll show you why this is so:**
Female Morning Routine:
- Brush teeth
- Shampoo and condition
- Maybe shave legs
- Wash face
- Brush hair
- Dry hair
- Curl hair if naturally straight
- Straighten hair if naturally curly
- Put on moisturizer and/or lotion
- Put on make-up
- Agonize over what to wear
- Iron selected outfit
- Realize selected outfit is ugly
- Agonize over what to wear (again)
- Iron newly selected outfit
- Find matching jewelry and shoes
Female Evening Routine:
- Put bandages on foot blisters caused by heels
- Brush Teeth
- Wash Face
- Scream when seeing self in mirror without make-up
- Put on moisturizer and/or lotion
Male Morning Routine:
- Maybe brush teeth
- Hopefully shower
- Maybe shave face
Male Evening Routine:
- Maybe brush teeth
So, it’s confirmed: men get everything.*** Men, if you want to help out the women folk, I beg of you, don’t utter the words “I’m tired” before 2 PM. We know that you rolled out of bed 15 minutes before leaving the house. If you care about us, you’ll say things like “I’m considering joining a cause to outlaw high-heels” or “I wish you women wouldn’t wear make-up, it’s really overwhelming your naturally beautiful faces.” And for the sake of your dental hygiene, please brush your teeth at least twice daily.
*Assuming he’s not made to feel like a little person when standing next to her.
**This list doesn’t even apply to those with kids. I can’t imagine the horror of adding that into the mix.
*** Except the option to carry a purse. I actually pity them for that.