Gender neutrality and Gretanization

Reads: 62  | Likes: 0  | Shelves: 0  | Comments: 0

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Reddit
  • Pinterest
  • Invite

More Details
Status: Finished  |  Genre: Humor  |  House: Booksie Classic
A story with a wink, about my view on the world we live in today.

Submitted: November 15, 2019

A A A | A A A

Submitted: November 15, 2019

A A A

A A A


Last week I was waiting for my turn at the cash register of the supermarket, when I received a push message on my smartphone that a favorite show from my youth was named the best radio program of the past century. I made a fist pump gesture, shouted: "Yes!!", embraced the bewildered, nice looking, music-listening young lady behind me, kissed her on the cheek and said with tears in my eyes: "It still exists girl, my God. We won! Isn't it fantastic?"

The lady pulled herself loose out of my embrace and unplugged her ears: "What the f ... dude! Keep your filthy claws off me." She then took a picture of me, held it up and shouted: "On the digital stake you go, loser. I am going to report you to #metoo." And putting the money where her mouth is, she pressed the send button demonstratively, accompanied with loud approval of the meanwhile gathered crowd.

Sometimes I don't understand the world anymore. Is that just me, or have we gradually become so disconnected from reality that connection and content have been replaced by division and content-free packaging? We put Yes-Yes stickers on our Dutch letterboxes (I will come back to this later), violently fight each other the whole year through about the role of Black Pete at Sinterklaas (a Dutch children's party) in December, up to the point of injuries and community service sentences, the Golden Age has to be banned and Michiel de Ruyter and Jan Pieterszoon Coen actually have to be posthumously dragged before the war tribunal. I think I even saw a petition in which someone called for a ban on De Ruijter's brown sprinkles for breakfast. Thank God there is also fruit sprinkles in many colors.

I know, to everyone their own opinion, but are we not taking things too far? Just look at the discussion about gender neutral toys. Our Dutch minister says: "Take a hard look at sexist toys." Toy sellers are no longer allowed to ask customers if it is for a boy or a girl. I always try to visualize a situation like that.

A big bald, bearded guy with a tattoo from his mother on one arm and from his mother-in-law on the other, enters the toy store with his son. The saleswoman asks: "Hello, sir, how can I .."

The man interrupts her furiously and barks in a heavy voice: "Sir? Sir? So you determine my gender purely on my looks? How dare you! My name is Jennifer and this is my daughter Chantal. And you better not ask that boy girl question either or we are outta here!”

The confused girl replies: “My sincere apologies. How can I help everyone?”

The guy gestures: “It’s okay. I am just very sensitive when it comes to gender issues. I feel so oppressed at times.” He turns to his son and says: “Okay Chantal, go pick a toy.”

The kid returns a minute later with a train set. His dad is happy: “See! Without our adult sexist view a girl cán pick a boy’s toy!” He pays for it and with a masculine yell they leave the store.

Gender neutral toys. When you get to the toy store, just for fun look between Barbie's and Ken's legs. If that is not gender neutral enough, then what is?

But okay, another example, PETA. Doing fantastic work in their fight against fur. And then suddenly someone thinks that proverbs and sayings with animals should be prohibited, because that would call for violence against animals. For example, the saying "beating a dead horse" is cruel. Seriously? Cruel? How is that cruel? It is the whole point of the saying. You beat a dead horse. It has no use, the horse is dead! And it keeps you from getting arrested for animal abuse if you beat a horse that is alive. I would say that saying should be applauded by PETA, not condemned.

I mean, even though I would never hurt a fly, I can get pig headed at times, but stuff like this really gets my goat. So I called them, mad as a hornet and I told them that all this crap just is a wild goose chase. At one point I said: “With all due respect ma’am.. “

She rudely interrupted me: “Ma’am? Ma’am?? Hold your horses! You define my gender by the tone of my voice? How dare you! My name is Hank. And for what it is worth regarding our stand towards animal cruelty in sayings, an elephant is eaten one bite at a time.” With that she slammed down the phone on me.

And I realized myself I was just beating a dead horse. I heard that veganist organisations now have teamed up with PETA, with the highlight being one dyslectic veganist stating that the word “meatings” as in “management meatings” should be banned from every dictionary. Seriously? Please!

So many examples. Artificially intelligent sex robots that need a consent module. So you buy one and trust me, they are not cheap, create a romantic atmosphere, wine, candlelight, the whole shebang, get all excited and finally are ready to take it thát step further and then she says: “Not tonight sweetie, I have a headache.” A consent module? What the heck!

I know, this column will be way too long again, apologies, but seriously. I promised to discuss the Dutch Yes-Yes sticker issue. Much has been said and written about it. Residents in more and more Dutch towns and cities must indicate whether they still want to receive door-to-door brochures and free local papers by sticking a Yes-Yes sticker on their letterbox. It is a process that I call "gretanization", after Greta Thunberg, the young environmental activist from Sweden. My definition of gretanization: Globalist environmental indoctrination of Western society through the use of children as broadcasting tool. And half the world participates, often without any knowledge of substantiation and facts. After all, attention to the environment is super hot, so ask for substantiation? Facts? How dare you!

Virtually no one will deny that the environment deserves attention, just as it has been for decades without the internet, but the discussion is currently being played so sharp and one-sided through social media, that the Yes-Yes sticker is not connecting people, but rather causes division among us. In addition, as readers of these local papers, we apparently are not sufficiently able to shape our opposing voices, except for the silent protest through the Yes-Yes sticker. It almost makes you feel guilty. It will for sure get me into a fight with my environmentalist neighbor because I have such a sticker. The association with that awarded radio show is easily made, at least for the older Dutch readers among us. "Uncle Joop, can you give me a sticker?" 

To which Uncle Joop angrily exclaims: "Sticker? Sticker?? Get the hell out of here, or I will glue a sticker on your ...

Oh well, I can go on for hours, but it is time to close. By the way, I myself have affixed an extremely environmentally friendly Yes-Yes-Yes-Yes sticker to my LinkedIn mailbox, with a completely different purpose. YES, I look forward to receive responses. YES, I am still looking and available for a new challenge. YES, salary is secondary to passion. And last but not least: YES, sharing is swell. Just like connection, putting things into perspective, humor, self-reflection and far too long columns that try to bring us back to the reality of everyday life. But that does not all fit on one sticker.

And, just for clarity. Disclaimer: I respect everyone's life choices, whatever they may be, so if there are readers who feel hurt by my perspective on the world we live in, then I humbly and sincerely apologize in advance. I love everyone. Well,... almost everyone.


© Copyright 2020 InterMezzo. All rights reserved.

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Reddit
  • Pinterest
  • Invite

Add Your Comments: