Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Naked with Chanel No 5: Day 26 - Women are not "Talent"

So when I joined my extremely expensive highly competitive Executive level MBA program, I was oh so excited to be around  top tier classmates who have all achieved high levels of business success, or at least behaved like grownups. Truth of the matter is, for the most part, my classmates are pretty freaking awesome. Except.....

Boys seem to behave like boys no matter what, and I've got one gripe that absolutely pushes my buttons. Some of these boys (who are all in their mid to late 30s, except one young outlier) have taken to calling women "talent." As in - "Hey, let's make sure whatever bar we go to tonight has good talent."

Now I'm not entirely sure what makes me angrier about this. Is it 1) It's disrespectful to the 14 courageous gorgeous smart and extraordinary women in our program. (There are 72 classmates). or 2) It's disrespectful to the women who are at said bars? A classmate of mine (a top level manager at a major financial co) nailed it. "Women aren't talent, we are people."

So here's the deal, I know that the guys are just saying they want pretty girls to flirt with, look at, and be able to have no-strings-attached drinks and possibly more... but why the hell do men not look past the obvious and want to dig a bit deeper? I should couch this with a very clear confirmation, there is not a guy in my class I'd want to date, so it's not jealousy, it's just kinda sad.  There is a lot more to women than just our pretty!

I had this discussion with my therapist, (yes I have a therapist - a dead older brother, adoption, 10 years in the wrong kind of marriage, confusing and critical parents, head trauma, and grad school - I need a damn therapist) and she reminded me that while I've always wanted a guy who was successful, confident, and on his way to great victory, I've dated the inevitably flawed ones - who needed help or fixing, or were on their way out of some destruction or headed to a mental breakdown... Maybe the fact is, that while we women know we are not just "talent" the men around us need to be reminded and we need to affirm it within ourselves.

So girls, here's my thought - Do not halt your pretty, do not stop being extraordinary, and god knows when you are out and about - let the dumb boys buy you drinks... BUT expect more from them, and more from yourself. Be more than talent to the men you meet on a Saturday night, because you know you want to mean more to them on Sunday morning.


Signing off this morning - ready to embrace a new day - empowered by it's start Naked with Chanel No: 5.

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