Sword In The Stone-Faced Grandma

, , , , , , | Right | October 12, 2017

Little Girl: “But, Granny, why can’t I have the sword?”

Granny: “Because swords are for boys and you’re a girl, so have the [Doll] instead.” *gestures to me* “I’m sure that she had [Doll]s as a girl.”

Me: “Actually, I had cowboy pistols and a [Gaming Console].” *while handing sword to the little girl* “Be careful ruling the high seas!”

(Granny was furious.)

A Standing Order To Get Themselves Into Trouble

, , , , , | Working | October 9, 2017

(I am female, married, and have two bank accounts: one jointly with my husband, and one just in my own name. The phone rings and I answer.)

Bank Employee: “Hi, could I speak to Mr. [Name], please?”

Me: “Can I ask who this is and what it’s about?”

Bank Employee: “I’m from your bank, and I would like to discuss your account and perhaps saving him some money.”

Me: “It’s a joint account, and I’m his wife, so you can talk to me.”

Bank Employee: “I’d prefer to speak to Mr. [Name]. We’ve noticed that some of your standing orders would benefit from having their dates changed.

(He then names several standing orders, including three which go from my own personal account, NOT our joint one!)

Me: “Sorry, but did you say standing orders [#1, #2, and #3]?”

Bank Employee: “Yes, that’s right.”

Me: “You do realise they’re on my account? Would you have included them if my husband had answered the phone?”

Bank Employee: “Yes, certainly. It would be much more efficient if they all came from the one account instead.”

Me: “…”

(Hopefully, after I’d had a word with the manager, this employee will come to realise the consequences of being willing to discuss private, confidential account details with someone who isn’t the account holder. This bank also consistently asks to speak with my husband, even though he has nothing to do with the finances and doesn’t even have a debit card!)

Chauvinism Is Soooo Fourth-Generation Console

, , , , , , | Right | October 6, 2017

(I’m working in the gaming department of an electronics store. At this time, our store’s gaming department is ranked #1 in the company, due in no small part to a female coworker who is very knowledgeable, skilled at selling, and personable. However, this situation plays out several times.)

Coworker: “[My Name], can you see if that group of customers needs anything? I asked them, and they said no, but I think it’s because I’m a girl.”

Me: “No problem.”

(I walk over to the group of teenage boys.)

Me: “Hey, guys, is there anything I can help you with?”

Customer: “Yeah, we’re wondering if [Game] is any good.”

Me: “You know what? I haven’t had a chance to play that one yet. But I do have a coworker that has, and knows everything about it. I’ll be right back.”

Customer: “Thanks!”

Me: *returning with my female coworker* “[Coworker], these guys had a question about [Game]. Can you help them?”

Customer: “Uh…” *silence, embarrassment*

(That coworker ended up getting a job in the gaming industry. To this day, I’m convinced that I will never know as much about games as her.)

Video Games Belong In The Kitchen!

, , , , | Working | October 3, 2017

(I’m a woman, working for a video game publishing company that also publishes smaller games by indie creators. I’ve actually worked in the industry for almost ten years, and I get along great with all my colleagues, who are mostly male. We’re in a video conference call with a young developer who is pitching us his first game. Everyone in this call, except for me, is a guy.)

Boss: “We’ve all had a chance to look over your packet, and we think it looks pretty promising, though we’ll have to play the prototype to be really sure.”

Developer: “Ah, I have that uploaded to your FTP server.”

Coworker #1: “Great. We’ll all give it a try and get back to you with feedback.”

Me: “I’m excited to check this out; I love this type of game.”

Developer: “Oh.” *looks visibly uncomfortable onscreen* “[Boss], I didn’t know… she would be playing. Are you sure that’s a good idea?”

Boss: “Uh, yeah. Why?”

Developer: “Well, I mean, she’s… she’s a… g… ” *trails off*

(It seems to dawn on everybody at once that he’s uncomfortable with me testing his game because I’m a woman.)

Coworker #2: *sputtering* “What? Wh… WHAT?”

Boss: *looking furious* “Yeah, well, don’t worry; when it comes to her feedback, I’ll be sure to have it read to you in a deeper voice so you can understand it! If you’re lucky enough to hear back from us!” *slaps laptop case shut, ending the call*

(My boss and all my coworkers are angrier than I’ve ever seen them, probably angrier than I am.)

Me: “Okay, let’s all calm down. I agree that was pretty gross, but… I don’t know, he’s pretty young. Maybe this can be a teachable moment and he can have a chance to redeem himself?”

Coworker #1: “Yeah, but then we’d have to time-travel back to the 1950s to work with him. UGH.”

Boss: “I do NOT want somebody like that representing us! I don’t even want to talk about it right now.”

(We did NOT end up working with that kid. I felt a little bad for him, in spite of everything, but also grateful that I worked with such awesome people who had my back. To his credit, he did send me a private e-mail about a year later apologizing for his behaviour, saying we were right to turn him down because it made him think about some prejudices he had, not just about women but other people as well. I accepted his apology, and I hope the rest of his life is a lot more fruitful… and less ignorant!)

Peppered With Requests For Water

, , , , , | Working | September 28, 2017

(I and my two friends go out to eat after work. [Friend #1] was born in Peru, but was adopted as an infant by her white mother and as such, has no connection to South American culture. This means she has a very low tolerance for spicy food. We are eating, and [Friend #1] realizes she just ate a jalapeño accidentally. We flag down our server to ask for some water.)

Server: *with three glasses of water* “Wait, why do you need water?”

Friend #2: “Please, she just had too much spice.”

Server: *while still holding the water away from the table* “But, she doesn’t need water. Why do you need water? Aren’t you Spanish or something?”

Me: “Please, just give her the water. She is not Spanish, and that doesn’t matter anyway.”

Server: “But I don’t get it; why can’t she eat spicy stuff?”

(We looked at each other and glared at her until she gave our friend her water.)

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