International Women’s Day was back on March 8, part of Women’s History Month. But isn’t every day women’s day? When noodling about for today’s topic, I realized the incredible variety and diversity of female human people I crossed paths with today. As a lifelong male who happens to play on Team Straight, I’ve devoted my fair share of time contemplating the opposite sex. I’ve been single a while, so apparently I haven’t learned very much. But that doesn’t mean I can’t appreciate them. So while this is predominantly a bicycle and assorted lifestyle blog, today’s post is about da ladeez.
Obviously the most important woman in anyone’s life is the person who brought you into it. I’m fortunate my mother is still with us at my advanced age. I haven’t been able to visit since Chanukah / Xmas, but she video called and we had a nice chat while I was on a break from work. She would want me to be sure to tell you that she’s my JEWISH mother, so there’s that. Naturally she was the main supporter of my bike riding when I was a kid and is supportive nowadays, too; she also claims to read every blog. Although I don’t have any bicycle-related stories about her, I’ve seen a picture of her on one as a kid. If my 22,000 miles and counting (verified on Strava — much higher before that) tell you one thing, it’s that I have some tenacity. I’ll take all the credit for the miles, but for discipline to gut it out, alotnof that is genetics and alot of single parenting. Thanks, and love you Mom!
I’ve already griped about my new job in my last post (Job Sucks Soul Out of Cyclist…), but I mentioned most of the people are good and nice. But also interesting. To my left sits a woman of unknown nationality, but who wears a head covering and presumably practices the Muslim faith. She is friendly but professional, and readily answers questions about the job and checks my work and occasionally we chat about non-work stuff. Behind me sits a quiet African American woman whose accent I cannot place and whose name is unique. She speaks in a stately way that suggests a British or perhaps Caribbean background.
Filling out the other two seats in our cubicle farm are two white women; one is rather petite but rides a motorcycle. She wished me a safe ride after work and I suggested we switch bikes; she laughed and she didn’t have the legs. and I countered that I didn’t have the arms for her machine. My supervisor, who calls herself a team lead, is older and very patient but also quite humble and easygoing and kinda funny. She’s new to the job so is less bossy than someone on a power trip.
Other co-workers included the head honcho, who exudes confidence and competence but also authority. With her white hair and the only woman therr wearing heels, if you didn’t know she had been the boss for 35 years, you could probably figure it out by heringnyher talk amd watching her walk with a certain swagger. A number of women spoke at a going away party for a long-time employee. They varied from a timid Latina verging on tears to several black women with clear, loud voices and hearty laughs who, if they attended church and did not sing in the choir, certainly could. There was the custodian, armed security guard, manager with her clipboard, and others. Women be like, everywhere!
A brand new young temp arrived the day after me; we got our ID photos taken together. We were at the place to pick up papers to work on and chatted. It turns out she is kicking my butt in the work product department. She said something amusing about not really existing until she got her ID, and being in a state that fluctuated between energy and matter. She is white but wears extremely colorful clothing that clashes; I complimented her blouse on the first day and she said she found it on the road. Frugality is trending, right?
Of course, we’re wearing masks 99% of the time, but during the picture session I saw she has a nice smile. That’s one thing I miss with this virus business. I doubt I’ll become close friends with any of them during the short time I’ll be there, but it’s nice to be surrounded by such a plethora of people of the prettier persuasion.
I went to my storage unit to meet a young Chicana who was selling some shelves on the Next Door neighborhood app. It turned out that not only were they the same model as the two I have, although a bit smaller, her company had rented a unit in the very same facility. We bantered while dealing with the transaction, and a few times she had her mask off since I stood the requisite six feet or more away. She was born in Texas and had lived in several parts of the state. We talked about that, my knowledge of Spanish, her very nice white BMW car, and a few other things. After conducting our transaction we parted ways.
I am always struck by how many different types of people go shopping — because pretty much that’s every one who eats food and can leave home. But most, men and women, never really interact. A few say hi or excuse themselves if they’re in the way, but usually they are in their own world or talking with whomever they came with. I found in the frozen dessert aisle, thinking of treating myself, when a couple of young women walked up. I was asking for their advice about what they liked.
As a fathlete myself, I generally avoid commenting on the size and shape of women’s bodies. When a very fit woman closer to my age came over wearing tiny salmon shorts, a white top, and an exposed, very flat midriff, I was a bit distracted. I’m still a human dude, after all. She gave the three of us her advice on several sorbets. And I just kept thinking, “This woman has like 2% body fat, so how can she know so much about ice cream?” The interaction ended without her asking for my digits for some bizarre reason, but life went on. I don’t go to the store to flirt with the ladies. Raised as I was by a feminist, I’m not supposed to say this: Damn, I’d sure like to find a store where I could pick up one of those.
I’d like to end this post by thanking women for giving us life, holding up so much of the world, and generally being awesome. (Of course they can be shitty, mean, petty, etc., just like men. In that at least, there is equality.) Somewhere out there may be a Ms. A Dude Abikes. Recently a young woman who’s mostly a runner followed me on Strava. She was complementary about my bicycling statistics and seemed amenable to riding together. That hasn’t happened yet, and I’ll leave that up to her. By the way, my pronouns are Dude and Dude’s.