Sis. Sensible sends us this, a misogynistic tire commercial from 1970.
Yeah, we can laugh at this now — sort of — but remember that some of us, at least, grew up on this crap. See how big and scary the roads seem to a girl? Jaysus.
A blog companion to the book by Susan Campbell
Sis. Sensible sends us this, a misogynistic tire commercial from 1970.
Yeah, we can laugh at this now — sort of — but remember that some of us, at least, grew up on this crap. See how big and scary the roads seem to a girl? Jaysus.
I need a great set of tires and good brakes because of the very young, and very old drivers…I do not think this is a gender thing at all.
Nor should we, any of us. But I teethed on the messages from my television, and they alternately told me I was silly and inconsequential. I beg to differ.
Ooooo, dwiving! I’m so afwaid! I don’t think I can do it all by my little self! “Airport?’ Does that mean …. airport? It’s all so confusing, they didn’t teach us this in homemaking! But thank goodness my big bwave husband will dwive us home, I don’t think I could do a wound twip.
I am SO glad I’ve avoided a lot of TV over the years. These messages were bad enough coming from teachers, etc.
I had to reread “wound twip,” as in “wound” as in “hurt.” I’m OK now. I get it. Just took me a minute. Now I shall go back to my nap, thanks.
Interesting that the woman moves over so the man can drive home.
And this after braving those scary roads and stuff!
Mine does. and she was an owner-operator of one of those big trucks like your daddy drives.
She is very comfortable with my driving skills and can’t stand listening to my back-seat driving.
TO THIS VERY DAY, if my mom says she’s going to drive to Dallas to pick me up at the airport, my dad says, “Oh, honey, you can’t do that.”
So, just who are you angry at, your Dad or your Mom?
She plays the victim if she says nothing.
Me, I would say, “Stuff it, Pops,” and get into the car and go to the airport.
But that’s just me.
Buy your mom a GPS for Mother’s Day. I bought one at COSTCO last September and it was the best $100 bucks I’ve ever spent. My son plays on travel soccer, basketball, and lacrosse teams-my little GPS has saved me time, money, and gas! I’ve even discovered new roads in my town!
Todd, do you keep deliberately missing the point in order to provoke us, or do you sincerely not get what we’re talking about?
Not at all Sensible…I was sincerely trying to help your mother out with her Dallas Airport situation. If you read my first post, you’ll discover that I was able to completely comprehend the topic-trust me SS, if my response was so far off topic Susan would have called me out on it.
But thanks for talking down to me.
“in order to provoke us,”
Us? He’s not provoking me. I don’t understand what is the problem with the ad.
Do you even remember how those old cars used to drive? I just drove my friends 1971 Chevelle and I can tell you, it is not fun. I used to get about 10,000 miles out of a set of tires. And flats? I had more flat tires in the 1970’s then I do today. Tires are much better today. OK, I drove them pretty hard and I did tend to buy “sticky” tires that handled well but would wear out sooner.
I worry about my wife when she is driving alone at night or in bad weather. I want her to have the safest tires she can. I don’t want her on the side of the road changing a tire.
There are strange people out there.
I guess that makes me a sexist, male pig.
Who loves his wife.
You are a such a pig…and trust me…I should know-I gave up pig for Lent! How dare you care about your wife, and want her to be safe-how do sleep at night? Eat a BLT and go to bed you piggy bastard!
Anna is more than capable of carrying the bags into the house, getting all of her own doors, chairs, filling her gas tank, and taking the trash to the curb. But my inner-piggy (and my father’s training ) taught me better. Mario-stop treating your wife like somebody you respect and love-you make me sick—get help Mario-you certainly need it!
BTW-if Allison needs any advice on a good GPS I have some good advice.
“Anna is more than capable of carrying the bags into the house, getting all of her own doors, chairs, filling her gas tank, and taking the trash to the curb. But my inner-piggy (and my father’s training ) taught me better. ”
But why is that better, Todd?
I suspect this is a subject on which we’re all going to go around and around. Different fathers teach different lessons. Some teach their male and female children the same lessons, some do not.
My father died fairly young, so I didn’t know him for as long as you’ve been lucky enough to know yours. But his message was always “you can do it, you can take care of yourself.” Is that wrong? Is my friend Simone’s father wrong for giving her a set of tools, just as he had her brothers? Simone’s a terrific mother and fab cook, in case one might not think she’s — y’know — feminine enough, but yeah, she can change a tire. I doubt if anyone WANTS to change one on a dark road in a cold rain. And I think most people appreciate help when it’s needed.
But that ad suggests that women are not capable of doing these things. That kind of ad can tear at women’s confidence and can teach men an incorrect lesson. And yeah, I’ve been driving long enough to remember big steering wheels and no power steering, but my mother, who was smaller than I am, drove cars like that before I did.
I wish to god my father had taught me to do half the things on a car that he taught his son to do. I can change a tire, thanks to a male friend who helped me to learn to drive. Whenever I get a new car, the first thing I do is make sure I can find the jack and the lug nut wrench and the spot on the frame where the jack goes.
Since I started buying cars that have donut-spare-tires, I’ve gotten a full-sized wheel and tire to use as a spare instead, and I also don’t like the L-shaped lug-wrenches. I think the 4-way wrenches are more efficient.
I don’t like fake-tires, and always get a real one as a spare, instead. The whole idea of not going more than 50 mph on a fake tire makes me think it’s not a good idea to go 30 mph on them, either. So I don’t bother.
Same here. I want to know how to change my own tires, should it come to that.
I was taught things like “If you’re going to drive a car, you’d better know the car.” I never took that to mean I was not-feminine, but maybe the lessons are different in different parts of the country? I doubt that, though. I was lauded for throwing a mean fast ball. I was lauded for doing well in school.
Maybe because out west we necessarily have to drive through more empty stretches of road than here in the Northeast.
That might be true. I didn’t know too many young women drivers who didn’t have at least a working knowledge of their cars. You really had to, precisely for the reason Sharon states.
When I first came east, I was stunned by the fact that it was impossible to discern where one town ended and another began, if not for the big signs. (I hadn’t been to the northeast corner of CT yet.)
Trust me Cynical,
Anna at times really appreciates it-just as I appreciate all of the things she does for me-it works for us-I am not treating her like a helpless woman, and she is not treating me like a clueless man. I can dig deeper holes, saw bigger trees, and shovel the snow off of her driveway much better than she can. She is also much better than me at hemming pants, hosting a dinner party, or making my condo look better. I seek out her advice, as she does mine-regarding things such as painting projects which we enjoy doing together. She does the fine work, while I do the ladder and more grunt work.
Before my freshman year in college, my mother taught me how to do my laundry, how to sew a button, and some basic cooking. These lessons, along with what my father taught me have been lessons that help me each day. I try very hard to pass on these lessons to my sons about getting doors, and chairs, and carrying heavy things for women. I also told them if a woman objects to them being a gentleman, to smile-and say no problem-it won’t happen again.
It’s funny, if a man acts like a cave-dweller he gets called on it, but if he acts like a respectful gentleman-he can get called on that as well.
My parents have been married for 47 years and since my mother is nocturnal-she enjoys shopping after 10 pm. This drives my father nuts-he’s worried about her being out when bars are closing and the fact that it is late. Does it make my father a jerk to be worried about his wife being out late-I don’t think so.
I am not in the position of calling any one’s father a jerk. I think it works for who it works for. Chances are, none of us here are romantically suited for one another, yet I love you all. Well, most of you. O.K. Two of you. The rest of you, I actively despise.
(Is this going to be one of those emails that gets misinterpreted?)
Do you think it’s the two of us that Susan loves?
Don’t ever let yourself think that. Ever.
Bwah and ha again.
“I also told them if a woman objects to them being a gentleman, to smile-and say no problem-it won’t happen again.”
But see — that can be interpreted as being punitive. Maybe somebody doesn’t NEED certain of the services offered. That doesn’t mean they’re rejecting you or your efforts, it just means they choose to do something themselves. If your arms are full of those heavy items, I’m going to open a door for you and if you tell me you don’t want me to do that, I won’t, but I won’t be angry at you for it. With heavy packages in MY arms, I’d be glad to have you open the door for me. But otherwise, opening a door for me doesn’t mean good manners or gentlemanliness to me.
Like humor, perhaps good manners are subjective. One day in New Haven I was walking into a Dunkin’ Donuts for some coffee. Behind me I nothiced a man who walked with braces…I held the door for him and he snapped that he could get his own door. I said “fine!”
I’ve actually had that happen to me. It’s an eye-opener. I think I’m being friendly, but no.
Todd, this is a good point about the subjectivity of manners.
Your anecdote reminded me of a friend who was missing a leg and absolutely hated for me to help him with doors and such. He was a former Marine, very strong, very proud. Out of respect for his feelings on this matter, I stopped helping him, even when he clearly needed it. I sometimes noticed onlookers giving me the evil eye for what they perceived as my apparent lack of good manners.
Tangentially (there she goes again!), or back to the issue of capabilities, yesterday I told the audiologist, a man about my age, that wherever possible, I wear earplugs when I’m around noisy machinery, such as when I’m using my lawn mower. He said “why don’t you get a guy to do that?”
I glanced up at the male medical student who was observing, and I think my quizzical look matched his as I said “because it’s my yard and I take care of it?” I know I won’t be able to do things like this forever, but I’ll do them myself while I can / want to.
I’m a fan of yardwork. Not a huge devotee of housework. I wash my own car, change the tires if I must, and I don’t look at Mr. DJ as one iota less of a man for not stepping in to do this stuff. Nor do I consider myself any less feminine.
“I’m a fan of yardwork. Not a huge devotee of housework.”
Oh thank goodness, I just finished mowing and will now go back and finish some raking, and I don’t know WHEN I’ll get around to culling all the magazines on the floor, and I’d hate to have you not respect me for THAT. Other stuff, fine.
I keep thinking that someone should get around to vacuuming my house. My method of housekeeping these days is to throw a party, clean the house nominally beforehand (because people are only going to come in and crap it up, after all) and then nominally clean it after. Then, a few weeks later, throw another party. Wash. Rinse. Repeat.
Ask Santa to give you a Roomba for Christmas.
My daughter gave me one. I was skeptical but use it regularly now. There’s even a little radio beam thingy that keeps it in the area you want. When you’re done, push another button and it actually docks itself into the recharger!
Okay, leaves are bagged. Now to the inside. When’s YOUR next party?
May 16. Things are going to get a little out of hand, I fear.
OMG – that’s exactly how our house gets cleaned! We look at each other and say, This house is filthy – time to have some people over so we’ll clean it.
A time-honored tradition in my home as well.
When I was a little girl, the only way I could motivate myself was to pretend Pres. Johnson was coming over, and I needed to clean my room. Groundings didn’t work. Having my allowance withheld didn’t work, but Pres. Johnson did. I mean, it wouldn’t have been a formal state visit or anything. He’d just drop by to watch ABC Sports with me, or something.
And it just about kills me not to hold the door for someone if I get there first. But I can understand how this might be seen as being condescending, in some circumstances.
Don’t you think it’s better to respect your Marine friend’s feelings rather than a group of strangers that you’ll never see again? I like the fact that he told you, and you respect his wishes. I have two Marine friends and they are both tough as nails, and I suspect that too would not want anybody getting their door either.
I’m not Sensible (you can lower-case that and I’m not that, either) but I try to bow to the wishes of my compatriots, even if it feels kind of icky.
Yeah, it does feel icky, but at least you’re respecting their needs. I’ve spent a little time in a wheelchair and later on crutches, and all that time I’d think “this is not permanent, I’m lucky.” It has to be very hard indeed to permanently lose capability or to recognize that you’ll never be able to handle some things, so perhaps refusal to accept such courtesies is one way to try to stay the same person. There’ve been times when I’ve said “shall I?” or something similar, and sometimes the other person has said “yes please” and sometimes the answer is “no thank you.”
Here’s my rule for our relationship, Cynical: You may feel free to carry me around on a pillow. A red one. I’d like that.
Oh, you’re changing the color now?
These threads are all twisted; I don’t know if I’m replying in the right “place,” but wanted to tell you all a funny story about my Marine friend and what other people thought of my lack of manners.
Oh, yeah, first of all, yes, I had to respect his wishes because he was my friend and I didn’t care what other people thought in the passing moment — I cared more about not hurting his feelings, but what I didn’t explain was that HE wanted to get doors for ME. Heavy doors. While he was carrying stuff. So people would wait to go through a door while he struggled mightily to open the door for me while he was on crutches trying to juggle the stuff he was carrying. Talk about awkward moments.
But here’s the story. He and I and my husband and husband’s sister were all at Walt Disney World drinking our way around EPCOT. C. was using his wheelchair at the time, a very lightweight, high tech titanium job. He loved taking it fast down ramps and STAIRS any chance he got (even while sober) and would often make it to the bottom intact. He loved the balancing-in-motion challenge. So this one time we were all quite tipsy and he tried his stair trick and basically did a face plant at the bottom, which did happen on occasion. Well, he was laughing his ass off and we were laughing, and well, it was one of those moments of hilarity where perhaps you had to be there drinking your way around the World with us to appreciate how funny it was. He certainly thought it was hilarious – he was laughing so hard he couldn’t even get up. Well, a cast member was nearby and saw this: man in wheelchair falls; companions laugh. We all four got out of there in a hurry because she was SO horrified at our behavior.
I’m stone-cold sober, and I’m laughing. I think that makes me a first-class, card-carrying turd, but this guy’s still a guy, right? And he’s still going to do what guys do and this is so cool that you could horrify a woman by being friends like this. I’d have been horrified, too, not knowing the back story, but I love this story.
Excuse me? I believe that’s spelled “bastid.”
Mom probably knows the way to the airport perfectly well. It’s not about GPS.
Dad thinks that she is not psychologically capable of driving in heavy traffic.
Jay is correct.
Happy to talk down to you at any time, Todd.
There’s the airport itself, which is probably one of the easiest, best signage’d airports in the nation, and then there are the roads to the airport. Great signage–most of the time. I always do a double-take when I see the “George Bush Highway.” (It’s named for GHWB, not GWB.)
So government agencies are naming public facilities for living people now? Ugh.
Yes, and it’s rife in Alabama. There was a big, big furore when Alabama State University removed the name of former ASU president Joe L. Reed from its “Acadome.”
Joe and his pals went to court, went to the legislature, went to the media. The battle is not over yet.
See! I am not making this up.
Correction: Reed was chair of the Board of Trustees, not the president, of ASU.
Reading this made me very happy: “happy to talk down to you at any time, Todd.”
It’s pretty easy to write, and say whatever you want when you are hiding behind a pseudonym-or a wannbe clever alliteration. Leftwing Larry, Salem Cindy, Overtime, or Doubtful Debbie are free to do pretty much write whatever-after all, they are a mystery. I respect what Susan, Jay, and Mario write here because they use their first and last names…before you jump up and down-everybody here knows DJ is Susan Campbell-so don’t waste any typing time responding to that.
From the bottom of my cold, black, small Republican heart-please accept my sincerest apology for going off subject, and questioning the driving ability of your mother. Your mom is perhaps, the greatest driver in all of Texas…some say in all of the west. If you are so concerned about your father’s comment, perhaps you can knit him a muzzle.
I’ll also beat you to this line Sensible if you are planning on using it as a comeback:
Bless his heart.
Better start knitting SS-I am certain your dad will have something smart to say the next time the Greatest Driver in Texas is backing the car out of the driveway.
DJ says she’s Susan Campbell, but in fact? She’s Harry Ranger, a huge and honking former NFL linebacker. Watch yourself.
I knew it.
I just knew it.
Well….if we’re coming out….I am in truth Sister Mary Margaret Hedwig, a Sister of Mercy….which is what you better be praying for if you see me coming.
Todd, since I started this spat with a question to you that was meant to provoke you, I apologize and will walk away rather than continue to escalate.
And my name is Carol Hattrup. It was never meant to be a secret. I comment as Sensible Seamstress because that name is connected with my WordPress blog. When I log in to Susan’s site, that is the name that comes up, and I saw no need to change it.
Well, I’m not feeling so peaceful.
It’s interesting — I actually have wondered if Todd would go on the attack about others not using full and legal (or at least nick-)names. Whatever names we go by doesn’t really matter — I don’t believe it makes anyone more honorable or honest to use one’s official name in comments here. It’s not as if we all live and work in the same town, so it’s not like we’re hiding our identities in a community. We’re spread all over the country, and come here to comment on the issues that DJ puts before us, and to exchange ideas, not to make friends or enemies. And sometimes we have reason to use pseudonyms.
All of us risk insulting / offending / irritating other readers whatever we say, especially in responding to someone else’s commentary. Part of this depends on how we write it and part of this depends on how we perceive what’s been written. And that’s a risk we take when we express ourselves.
So I’m risking angering Todd once again (Sensible, you may or may not have read his scathing (or not) “witch” allusions he made a few days back because I said something that insulted him [I think this is accurate]):
Todd, it seems to me that you inspire a lot of negative reactions. I think that’s because there are times when you either really DON’T get the intent of some comments, or you intentionally misinterpret them; either way readers might react with “wha…?” or with something more negative.
I don’t think your suggestion of buying a GPS was ill-intended, but it had nothing to do with what Sensible said about her mom. Unfortunately the situation disintegrated from there, and you felt the need to take umbrage and go off on a rant about names, mom’s driving, dad’s comments…. Seems like a lot of anger there.
I think the GPS remark was an attempt to be helpful. This is a major difference in communication styles between men and women and, yes, I’m generalizing, but there have been studies, too. Having spent so much of my life in the engineering workplace, I find myself doing it, too, and I know it annoys the hell out of some people, but it’s a hard habit to break. Sometimes people just need to share, and aren’t looking for a “solution” or a “fix.” It’s important to learn to recognize those situations. It’s a lot harder to do that when there are no visual clues.
Maybe certain threads should be designated “gals only”! You know, as in “we’ll be chatting about wimmin’s stuff that wouldn’t be interesting to the manly menfolk”. ;-)
Great Ideeer, there Gina.
Then Todd and I can talk about the wings at “Hooters.” They are sooo damn good!
It’s sad that to some, Men and Women can’t discuss every topic in a fair and civil manner.
I know from my vast experiences with woman that we are different, that we do have different views on different things. I never viewed that as a negative. ‘Da wife and I are involved in many activities together and we see things differently.
I like that.
I would miss not having her perspective on many matters in our life.
But you see, I like woman.
Just not all of them.
I don’t like all men, either, so we’re even.
Nah, we go ahead and include everyone. We’ve had some raging discussions about all kinds of wimmens stuff.
OK, I’m feeling hurt that people not only didn’t think my hilariously ironic post was funny, apparently nobody even recognized it as a joke! Not even with the smiley appended …
** going off to lick her wounds – and hone better material ;-) **
BTW, even if was serious, I don’t imagine there’s a practical method to prevent the manly menfolk from commenting on this open and public forum anyway, but mostly, I pity the fool who would try to tell DJ how to run her website!
It’s sad that we took that so earnestly, myself included. I have about an hour of serious-nature a day, and it strikes at the worst time. Did you get your wounds licked?
some here have tried.
Others here have been told to find another blog, as this one is for “Feminist Women.”
I enjoy different opinions from other perspectives.
But that’s just me.
Sorry if I hurt your sensibilities.
But I’ve been kicked before.
Whoops, I did it again! I was kidding about having hurt feelings; I thought describing my own post as “hilarious” would give that away. Should I go cold-turkey with the irony?
Seriously, I’m glad I found this smart and sassy blog, with its feisty and opinionated followers. I do realize that misunderstandings abound on teh interwebz (or in any written medium), as Susan has already pointed out.
On a possibly related note: I really like Wikipedia’s stated fundamental principle, which admonishes its army of anonymous editors to “assume good faith”, and this exchange reminds me of my resolve to apply that principle more consistently in my life, online and otherwise. Unfortunately, I also appreciate snark, irony, sarcasm and satire. Does that put me in an untenable position?
“Unfortunately, I also appreciate snark, irony, sarcasm and satire. Does that put me in an untenable position?”
Nah, I think it just means you take your chances writing it.
BTW, by “appreciate” I didn’t just mean my own – I adore that kind of humor, from Swift’s A Modest Proposal to the Simpsons, Colbert and Stewart, (although snarky Letterman bores me for some reason).
I don’t know why, but I feel the same way about Letterman. I think he’s plenty self-effacing, all that, but for some reason it just feels off with him, to me.
Nope. That puts you at the right blog. We are sometimes serious, generally snotty, and almost always hilarious in our own eyes. Welcome home.
“and hone better material ;-) ”
It’s not the material, it’s the medium. It’s hard to hear the tone with the eyes, and it’s hard to know if The Emoticon expresses “this is a joke” or “whaddya think, girlz” or …..
Let’s count up the emails I’ve sent that I thought were wildly funny, the ones I have to follow up with a barrage of explainers.
There was a line in “Starting Over” (1979, Burt Reynolds / Jill Clayburgh / Candace Bergen) where Burt leaves a note for Jill which upsets her, and he says “It was a JOKE.” How often THAT phrase has come up in e-mails is a matter of conjecture, but I bet it’s billions of times a day.
Was it a rape joke that he sent?
Hey, it was just a joke!
“Was it a rape joke that he sent?”
Yeah except it took place in a men’s prison.
” I pity the fool who would try to tell DJ how to run her website,”
Believe me, I’ve tried, as have several others.
And she pretty much ignores everyone. Life turned her that way.
GREAT story, SS!
It is a great story, indeed. I guess he thinks his phantom leg is hollow. So I’m curious — has he gotten a prosthesis? If so, how’s he doing, and if not, why not?
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