Wednesday, January 28, 2009

What Do You Say When...

...the janitor at your job asks if you are single? This has happened on more than one job in my life and I still haven't come up with a good response. It bugs me that women often have to be bothered with this kind of crap at work, and it raises several other issues.

First, what should a woman - ok let's be clear, a single woman in my case - say when the male janitor asks such a question. And no, I'm not trying to be funny. I actually find this to be an annoyingly difficult situation to navigate. Why? Mainly because this is someone you have to see everyday and you sometimes need him to do things like empty your trash and you want to maintain a cordial work environment. Similar to the administrative assistant. So, you don't want to shoot off the first thing that comes to mind, which for me is: "Are you kidding?" Do I look like I'm interested in talking to you?" No, that would be bad. I'm not trying to be the bitch at work. As many of you may be thinking, why don't I just say the politically correct thing: "That's an inappropriate question to ask me. I would appreciate it if you would refrain from doing so." I'm not a fan of that either. While I would be completely justified in saying that, the response would also come off badly like I'm a bitch and there goes the cordial environment. And as we all know, office politics can be a tricky game. What did I say? Unfortunately, I ended up lying and said I was not single. I really hate having to do that in responding to any guy I want to go away because while it has the desired effect of them going away, I feel that I have given these guys the wrong impression that if I were single, they would have a chance and they will then continue their bad behavior with other women. I mean really, the guy who goes around asking women if they are single is usually someone who doesn't stand a chance in hell of dating them. I don't mean to sound classist, but why in the world would I date the janitor on my job? I don't believe in dating men I work with at all, let alone the janitor! Collegial work relationships that turn into love relationships can happen but they're usually based on common interests, shared experiences, etc. So, why shouldn't I just say, "Yes, I'm single but I would never date you." Sounds mean I know.

Secondly, why is it that women are always dealing with this issue? I'm sure men sometimes have this problem but nowhere near the rate that women do. And I'm always amazed that it's still happening even in this era of sexual harassment policies. Most people are aware of these laws. This is not the 1950's. And why are these guys harassing women who are in a much higher occupational level? Aren't they at all afraid of losing their jobs? I get enough of that on the street and really don't need it at work.

And speaking of annoying men on the street, what do you say to these questions/comments?:

  • Hey baby, can I go with you?
  • Smile, it's not that bad.
  • Psst, can I talk to you?
  • Where's your man?
  • Do you want some company?

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Friday, January 23, 2009

Inauguration Reflection

Now that's one hot couple!

I still don't think the enormity of the past few days has really set in for me. For the most part, when it comes to politics (and men), I'm cynical and apathetic. But I was definitely overwhelmed by this history-making event and the degree of excitement in the air. I mean, as a country have we ever seen such love, adoration, and support for anyone, much less a politician? Some of the things I saw: the Obama Burger (pic below), Barack Obama water, a ChocObama candy bar at ACKC for $8.50, Barackwurst, Obama Hennessy bottles at the liquor store around the corner, Obama acrylic nails, saints bracelets with the saints replaced with Obama...While I want to linger in the moment, I am cautious only because I know that public opinion can change quite quickly. But I've decided to revel for now.

Sign outside of the Grand Slam at the Grand Hyatt. I didn't have one but was told by the manager that it was a blackened burger with blue cheese. Uh, blackened?

These guys were apparently drunk and asking for money.

Not something I see often in my neighborhood.

This either. Satellite central.

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Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Fucking DC Cabs!

I have had enough of DC cabs. I have been meaning to blog about how much I dislike DC cab drivers for some time now and especially after Shaw Girl told me about a woman being sexually assaulted back in October. There are many reasons to dislike them (like only picking up people going to Virginia when the bars close) but not picking up black people and being inappropriate with women are my two major reasons. I am especially pissed after my experience this weekend. My friend Evan, who is originally from Ghana, was in town for the inauguration. Evan has dark skin and while he was in DC this weekend, had an extremely difficult time getting cabs which is why each time we met up he was late. Well, tonight we attempted to get a cab together and I witnessed it for myself as he stepped out into the street. After several failed attempts, we decided to head back into the restaurant we had just left because it was freezing. The bartender who is white, decided he would assist. A cab immediately stopped but then pulled off when Evan and I walked up. This happened three times! Now this is a ridiculous situation on a regular day but on a day when the first black president has taken the oath of office, it just makes you sick. What is even more disturbing is that before Evan moved out to Seattle to work for Microsoft, he had lived in DC for several years. He told me that he noticed it was the African cab drivers who were the most reluctant to unlock doors when he walked up. And if he puts on a hat (which is necessary in 20 degree weather), he can forget about it. While I suggested that we file a complaint with the DC Taxicab Commission, the procedures for doing so as described on the web site, do not sound the least bit useful. Funny how during a time when we're celebrating change, you realize just how much things have stayed the same.

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Thursday, January 15, 2009

Inauguration Overload

It's been a while since I've posted and for good reason. After a New Year's visit with family that included way more drama than I care to mention, I was not prepared to jump back into work. I've also taken on one too many projects including event planning (which this girl no longer is doing officially, but what the heck) for the Inauguration. At this point, I will just be glad when the whole thing is over. Being a night owl, I am glad that things will be open later. But I am also someone who is not fond of crowded spaces, especially those with wide-eyed tourists. So, instead of dwell on the impending craziness that will be the next few days in DC (blockades have already been erected in my neighborhood), I decided to reflect on 2008 with some of my favorite pics.

Wounded U St. pig...possibly the work of DC rats?

The result of having too many gay male friends -
gifts I won't ever use.

My new substitute for sex - the Chocolate Sin Cake at Ruth's Chris

I typically don't like souvenirs but this ceramic mug is in honor of those blue take-out coffee cups that only seem to be found in New York. I always have to have one when I'm in the city, so my sister actually bought me one for Christmas.

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