Before I start writing this post, and before you start reading it, I should warn everyone that I am not judgmental. Neither am I opinionated. But yes, I do have strong, tangently-inclined opinions, which have their own value systems. I do realize that the few of you who read this blog know me personally and know the people I talk about, and I will talk about personally too. I beg you to not form your opinions based on what I write here, and don't hold me to them too. I notice things, I feel something about it, hence I write. I might notice something else later and my feelings or opinions might change. Which is a natural human process.
Those of you (if there are any) who don't know me personally, and yet read my blog, I have only one word for you - Welcome!! (Not that the others are not welcome!! :) )
When I shifted into my new apartment, I had a clean, white, untouched wall and a lot of frames to be hung. I wasn't sure if I could pierce holes in the walls here so I asked my uncle (Masa) about it. Masa told me that all I needed was a few pins and a hammer and I was set. I try to cover all grounds, so I asked my seniors about whether I am allowed to do such things, and they said sure, just when you are vacating the apartment, se sure to stuff the holes with Colgate. Fair enough.
Problem two: Where do I get nails and a hammer from?
Masa's advice: Oh, Just meet Rahul (Some undergrad ABCD here, who he knows well) and say, "Raaa-hul.. How do I make holes in my walls for frames...(Accompanied with batting eyelashes and a few helpless giggles)"
Needless to say, I refused and my wall remains untouched and the frames unhung. But I am fine with it. This sounds like a better option.
I was planning a trip to
RM was scared about a security issue concerning the internet we have been using. I told her that if someone comes asking, say that you don't use the internet, your room-mate does and leave the rest upto me. I have no idea how I will tackle the situation, if it arises. But I do know that she doesn't want to handle the issue, and I feel like the man here, asking her to drop it all on me.
RM's laptop arrived today ( Congrats for the same!!), but she missed the delivery. The FedEx guys think that the best time to deliver anything is when you are at class. Go figure. Anyway, this has happened with both of us before, at different times. First she, and then I tracked out way down to the otherside of this otherwise small town (Far, Far, Faaar away), to get out parcel, and back, in the bus. This time, she called up a friend, who lives far, far, faaar away too, got him to pick her up, take her to FedEx, and drop her back home.
When she asked me to accompany her, I refused. She asked me why, and I told her the truth.
I am not comfortable asking someone to pick me up from my house, take me somewhere and drop me back, and then go back on that self-same road to where he actually came from in the first place. It's awkward.
I live in a town where traveling by the bus is pretty convenient. And, traveling by car is convenient too. The bus system here is pretty good, plus it helps that I can look up online when the next bus will reach exactly outside my home and which bus will take me where from wherever I want to go. You get the picture.
But, on the other hand, its not that difficult to buy a car in this country after a few years, as a result of which a lot of seniors and friends I know, have cars. And since they are all nice people they are always ready to help/comply.
While I know that this is what friends are for, I also know that I am not comfortable taking obligations from people when I can use my own self or my resources to get the same thing done. I hate being typified as a typical girl, because I believe I don't fit into that segment. I also understand that most people don't like being "Typified".
Maybe I am being sexist when I say that I expect girls to behave this way. Maybe I am being practical when I say, don't take anyone or anything for granted. Maybe I am being too stubborn when I refuse to take help from people bowing under stereotypes.
Am I the only one who can see these stereotypes? Or am I the only one who can feel their pressure and be uncomfortable with the comfort offered by the stereotypes. I know that is a paradox, but it makes a lot of sense. I am uncomfortable with it just because staying within the boundaries of these stereotypes will make my life easier, and more comfortable.
It's not about the male or female stereotype here, its about fitting into the mould of damsel in distress and waiting for a prince to lift you out of it. Why can't these damsels stop sounding so dainty and pretty just by their names and start fighting back their own distresses, at least till you can. Till you have the resources too.
I am not saying that you should deny help when you seriously need it. Going back late in the night, and said friend offering to drop you back, is understood. Need to go somewhere immediately where no bus goes, really far, and said friend takes you there- understood. But more than that, and it brings an image of a female sitting on a pretty couch, twiddling her thumbs waiting for the man to come and roll out the carpet so that she can step up and go about.
It's really not about who is wearing the pants, its about who is making whom wear it.