This is a super self-obsessed post. It is on my sins against gender stereotypes.
I am of the school of thought that believes that to acknowledge stereotypes is to perpetuate them, so I've been sitting really quietly in a corner and hoping this tag will pass me by, but mera bad luck hi kharaab hai and she thinks I should do this tag, so here it is.
1. I cannot dance. I will not dance. I do not like situations where I am expected to dance, and I will shamelessly sit at the corner table, eat everyone's food and drink all the Pepsi while they are living their brief alcohol-fueled Hrithik Roshan delusions. If you try to force me to dance, I will not like it, and then I will get agitated and then I will pass out.
2. I do not wear makeup because I hate how it feels like a plastic raincoat on my skin. I began wearing kohl a few months back, so on a good day I'll be wearing earrings and kohl. On a regular day I will be wearing neither.
3. I have a very dirty mind and a a huge appetite for off-colour jokes. I swear a lot in ordinary conversation and I love learning to swear authentically in different languages. I am an equal opportunity letch; I letch at men and women of all ages. I regularly objectify people and I rather enjoy it.
4. I am a very focused, very quick shopper. I love my friends, but I will never accompany the more finicky ones on a shopping trip because I enjoy the glow that comes with not having killed anyone.
5. I have a very literal mind and I usually do not 'get' hints. If someone wants me to do something, their best bet is to ask me directly, otherwise it will never happen.
6. I do not remember birthdays. I have on occasion, forgotten my own birthday, and having been reminded of it by a friend, acknowledged it and proceeded to ignore it. It's a birthday, it's no big deal.
7. I can't cook. I can't even boil water without help. However I can make very decent tea, and a passable maggi. I have a theory that the Food Pyramid requirements are covered by tea and maggi. If they are not, I'm going to have a very short life.
8. My deepest desires are to go paragliding, parasailing, waterskiing and bungee jumping. I also really, really REALLY want to learn to shoot, in pursuit of which desire I have spent two whole days taking buses from dingy office to dingy office in Madras, only to have an assortment of moustachioed idiots tell me that there are, of course, places to learn to shoot in Madras, but I probably can't because I'm too skinny and too female. To these men I offer the one-fingered salute, and the privilege of being my first targets when I DO learn to shoot.
9. I do not like newborn babies. To call them ugly is to downplay the sheer animal STRANGENESS of their faces. They can't focus their eyes, and their irises simply bounce randomly about in the sockets. Their mouths are shapeless and lipless and always open in some silent primal scream. Their heads are constantly lolling about. They look like miniatures of the grandfather who had a stroke in Thevar Magan. There is nothing charming about that. Nothing.
This list stops at nine because it will pain me to stop at an even number.
Now, why I don't know if this tag is a good idea:
I've read many many blogposts by many different women who have done this tag, and I find the gratuitously self-congratulatory tone of most of them somewhat self-defeating. Acknowledging the breaking of a(n alleged) stereotype as a 'big deal', simply attributes legitimacy to that stereotype where none may really exist. I must confess that stereotypically 'womanly' women have been the exception in my life, and most women I know straddle gender roles with ease and display no special sense of accomplishment for having done so. So forgive me for suspecting that the 'womanly' stereotype is simply some highly fictionalised, excessively romanticised construct that may at some point in time have had a strong basis in reality, but which no longer has that.
In other words, it's no big deal to sin against this stereotype, because no one really fulfils it to begin with.
Feel free to call bullshit, I have no training in sociology.
3 weeks ago