Controversial, I know, but would there have been as much media interest if Phillip Hughes had been a woman, my daughter asked me in the car this morning?
‘Harsh’, I responded, secretly proud of her inner feminist sensitivities.
Being the complete cricket ignoramus that I am, I’m ashamed to admit that I’d never heard of Phillip Hughes before last week’s incredibly sad turn of events. But everyone in the world knows who he was now.
And who could fail to be sucked in by those big, brown puppy-dog eyes and the huge, cheeky grin of the sportsman, who not only won the hearts of his fellow team mates but also those of a nation? Apparently he was an awesome cricketer too.
And it’s only right that his death should be ruminated over and that he should be eulogised.
But NC had a point.
How many times in my life have I attended a party or dinner on the arm of my husband and never been asked what I do?
Amara – Dinner Party 1954 – Found on Flickr.com
No-one is interested in what I do, but they are always eager to ask the old man about his day job and successes. Is that a gender thing – in that men talk about work and sport and women apparently talk about housework and children (?) – or is there the underlying assumption that because he’s a man, he must be successful/do something interesting?
He’s an accountant.
Whereas, in my case there seems to be the assumption that what I do is either a) too dull to warrant discussion b) nothing c) JUST raising kids d) too awkward to ask.
Which riles me because what I do is SUPER interesting, ACTUALLY, if any of those insular, uninteresting losers actually had the ounce of personality, creativity or manners required to ask me about it.
I could bore them for hours with my tales about houses.
Because I do have a life outside my husband and my children and some fairly outrageous opinions, and what galls me the most is that in many respects it’s been a harder journey for me to achieve my successes than him.
I’ve had to cope with vaginal stitches in the photocopying room, leaking breasts and I’ve had to give presentations on no sleep, yet it has still been expected of me to perform at the same level as him.
Which is why it is so frustrating to be overlooked and patronised.
Whatever men do, seems to be newsworthy, yet the only time women overshadow men in the media is when they take their clothes off or when they are painted as the freaky female success story of the corporate world.
I might not sit in a boardroom for work but I am still a person, with a career and a life, and to be honest, I’m far more interesting than my husband.
Ask me about it, sometime.