I Am Not Your Female-In-Character Assistant

Last night, as a friend and I sat greeting people coming to an event we were helping organize at the United Way building (where any nonprofit can rent a room for a function), a man approached. White, balding, walking with purpose.

I said hello, are you here for our event?

No, he said, he was looking for the bat people event.

He wore faded black t-shirt with the bat silhouette Commissioner Gordon used to throw up into the clouds when he was in a pickle.

There’s a huge urban bat colony about a quarter-mile from the building, and we have nonprofits in town dedicated to bat habitat and such, so everything seemed reasonable and his outfit was on point.

I waved toward the only other check-in table set up across the corridor and said well, it must be them.

I watched and listened as he greeted the woman staffing that table, which was only a few feet away from ours.

She was not the bat people either.

He asked her where his group was, then, assuring her that his information said he should come to 50 Waugh Drive and that was this building, correct?

She confirmed that was the address, apologized (as women do), and explained, again, that she did not work there and if he wasn’t there for her event, she did not know where he should be.

He came back to our table. Just as the other woman had done, we suggested he go ask the man at the check-in desk.

He’s not there, the bat man said.

I had checked in with this info desk staffer earlier. A couple of times he got up from his desk to pick things up or get things out of closets or drawers, but I stood by the desk and he returned within a couple of minutes to provide me with the information I sought.

I’m sure he’ll be right back, one of us said.

Several minutes later, I noticed he had returned to the other not-bat-affiliated person to ask if she was sure she did not know where his meeting was.

He looked at us and my compatriot reminded him that we still did not work there.

Her tone was a mite … frosty.

He was a grown, adult man.

He had a cell phone, and he had what appeared to be a printed out email.

He was in a building that has a staffed desk that literally has sign on it promising information.

And he kept returning to women WHO HAD PATIENTLY EXPLAINED MORE THAN ONCE that they did not have the information he was seeking to ask if they were sure they did not have the information he was seeking.

He asked her what she thought he should do. He was clearly getting frustrated.

So was she, but he did not appear to care.

This is not the first time I have seen this happen.

Men of the world, take note. As long as you have opposable thumbs and minimal brain activity—and it was clear this man had both—you have all of the tools you need to solve your problems.

I know this to be true, as I have shown up places and not found what I was looking for and discovered a solution using just my cell phone, quick wit, and ability to self-propel through three-dimensional space.

Women are not here to be your assistant just because you are frustrated and want someone else to make your life easier.


But if you do, and I know you will, consider yourself warned. I will go to the secret place all women go and I will mock you. We will all mock you.

We will tilt our heads and roll our eyes and purse our lips and there will be a firm set to our jaws as we try not to gnash our teeth, because we have all dealt with you, and we know we will never be done dealing with you.

Women are not your female-in-character robot assistants.

P.S. Here’s the clue you will get. The secret place women go to mock men? It is the internet, and I am here, and I will describe you well enough that if you have a drop of self-awareness and happen to come across this, you will know I am talking about you. And I know that is not nice but I do not even care.

This entry was posted in advice you didn't ask for, feminists & feminism and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to I Am Not Your Female-In-Character Assistant

  1. Elaine Hall says:

    OMG! I have to forward this to my daughter in Austin! She is a producer at a tv station and sometimes when driving home, she’ll call and we will catch up…..and the conversation is usually, no mostly about politics. She told me about a production meeting that turned to the subject of students wearing burkas. After a back and forth banter on the subject one producer (a male) stated, its fear. That’s what the burka is. He also said that is why #45 got elected, he plays on people’s fears and lets them know, that only HE can protect them from all of the boogie men. My daughter paused then said, “Everyday, I wake up and I am scared! I’m scared for my 2 1/2 year old daughter, I’m scared to leave her at the daycare, out of my sight. I’m scared as I drive in the traffic jams to get to work. I wake up scared, EVERY single day! But me, like a million other women, throw the covers back, get up and live a life that hopefully is productive and busy and responsive to the needs of the world! Fear? That doesnt stop us!” And my daughter ended our conversation with ,”that’s why leaders and presidents need to be women, because a damn little scarf on a head is not the fear we should be leary of!

  2. JKHR says:

    The problem is that men like this don’t care. They don’t care if you say you are not their female in-character assistant. They don’t care if you roll your eyes and mock them on the internet. They don’t care because you, as a woman, are not a real person to them and YOU DO NOT MATTER. There are just some men who will never “get it.” The man you mock now could easily have been the same guy who called me “Honey” and told me to get him a cup of coffee 30 years ago. Back then, feminism confused him. Today, he dismisses you/us/women with brains as “femi-nazi’s.” He does not care, and as long as there are men who will roll their eyes at YOU and make snide remarks about your hormones being out of whack, or some other derogatory remark related to your gender, he WILL NOT care and you cannot MAKE him care.

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