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    Hung Up On Gender

    | Elk Grove, CA, USA | Bigotry, Top

    (I am one of the several female employees that work at my video game store. On this particular day, all the employees at work are female.)

    Coworker #1: “Thank you for calling [game store]. This is [name]. How can I help you?”

    (After a few seconds, my coworker hangs up the phone. I don’t think too much of it until the next phone call a few minutes later.)

    Coworker #1: “Thank you for calling [game store]—”

    (Again, my coworker hangs up.)

    Me: “Why’d you hang up? Wrong number?”

    Coworker #1: “No, I can hear the click when they hung up. They’ve been calling all day and hanging up without asking anything. You try next time.”

    (As expected, the phone rings again and I answer.)

    Me: “Thank you for calling [game store]—” *to my coworker* “Ah, they hung up!”

    (This goes on for the rest of the day until later that night when I’m working with another female coworker. The phone rings, and she answers.)

    Coworker #2:: “Thank you for calling [game store]. This is [name]. How can I help you?” *turns to me* “Huh, that’s odd. I think they hung up on me.”

    Me: “Oh, yeah…that’s been happening all day. I wonder why…”

    (After deliberating for awhile, we guess that the callers have been hanging up because we’re girls, and they want to talk to a male employee. I decide to test our theory the next time the phone rings.)

    Me: *in a deep voice* “Thank you for calling [game store]. How may I help you?”

    Make Caller: “Yeah, I was wondering if you had a game in stock.”

    Me: “Okay, what game are you…”*unable to maintain my deep voice, I squeak the next words in my normal pitch* “…looking for?”

    Male Caller: *instantly hangs up*

    (Later that evening, one of our male coworkers comes in to purchase a game. Upon witnessing one of the phone calls, he asks what is going on and we explain it to him. The next time the phone rings, he answers the phone.)

    Male Coworker: “Thank you for calling [game store]. How can I help you?”

    (The caller tells my coworker what game he needs, but my coworker explains he can’t help him since he’s not on the clock. My male coworker hands the phone back to me.)

    Me: *to the caller* “Okay, so you were looking for [game] and—” *to my male coworker* “He hung up again.”

    Male Coworker: *laughing* “Seriously?! From what you’ve told me, he’s been calling to ask about one game for eight hours and he can’t stay on the line long enough to listen to you because you’re a girl!”

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