You know, I have thought this many times over the years. But it struck me again today during my morning bike commute. It is much easier being a guy. My wife and I have a joke. After a trip to Aveda for product, she will point at her hair and say “THIS takes work!” And I will point at what’s left of mine and say “THIS takes PERT plus!”
I want to make sure I give her props though. The woman doesn’t need nor use makeup. She is gorgeous in the morning, and we have both woken up and gone straight to Starbucks, with baseball caps on. I have known many ladies (coworkers, friends, and wives of friends) who say they would NEVER leave the house without their “face”. So I know I am a lucky man for MANY reasons.
However, this isn’t what I mean by easier.
I had an ex-coworker and friend contact me recently asking if she could ride with me when I commuted to work in the morning. We live close to each other, (didn’t know that) and we both work in Seattle. Now that it’s almost Fall (Winter is Coming) the sun is coming up later in the day. The trail we take is very rural, lots of trees, and hella dark.
Now me, I never gave it a second thought. I just broke out the cheap, clear, safety glasses from the shed, and off I went. In her message, she said something I hadn’t considered. “I just don’t feel safe as a lady alone in the dark on the trail. It creeps me out.” After thinking about it, I had to agree. There just seem to be a lot more nut jobs out there that would mess with a woman than with a guy.
I’ve had people for years ask me why I feel safe hiking, biking or working out early in the morning all alone. For each of these I have theories.
Hiking wise, I always figured (and I have NO scientific basis on this) that most nut jobs and degenerates are too lazy to go to the mountains and actually hike to get anywhere. I felt safer alone in the dark forest than in broad daylight down town.
Working out? My outside workouts, especially when I did stairs downtown, started at 5 AM. I figured most creepy people are either sleeping off being drunk the night before, or too lazy to wake up that early. Add to it that I was carrying an ice axe (training for mountains) and I had no fear.
On the bike? I worry more about being run into or hitting something (damn near hit a raccoon this morning) in the dark.
But here’s where I think the difference between men and women comes in. Since I was a kid, I was taught by my dad, “You should always walk a girl home if its dark.” So I have. Shoot, I once drove a girl home to her parents place (she was too drunk to drive, and had planned to walk) then walked 5 miles back to my car.
I met the other Strohs for the first time because I didn’t want our roommate Donna to walk alone, at midnight, to meet the group, camping out for Huey Lewis tickets. I went with her.
Hell at work, we used to have the testosterone lot (my name, not the official title). It was a parking lot down a dark alley that management thought was too dangerous for women to park in. This meant I had to walk a block while some ladies had to walk 5 in the rain and darkness. I was asked by an employee why she couldn’t park where I did. I told her it was too dangerous for a woman.
I should mention now that she was 8 inches taller than I and out weighed me by over 100 lbs. She towered over me and said “It’s safer for you than for me???” She was MAD!!
Personally, I believe that capability wise, there’s no difference between men and women. However, culturally, I think women are trained from an early age to be more cautious (to the point of fear sometimes).
The problem is, there are enough truth to the caution that I honestly think it behooves them to be a bit scared.
So yep, I think it is MUCH easier to be a guy, but I also think it is entirely unfair!