I have a daughter who is about to turn 16. Life was very different when I was 16. VERY different. That said, there are some constants. There are some things that every girl needs to know. I want to think I can wait to admit these things or to communicate these things, but I know that’s not true. There are facts that every girl needs to know, whether it’s 1984 or 2018… #LifeIsBullshit
- Never have a drink that you haven’t poured yourself or watched someone pour.
- Never let anyone take a picture of you naked.
- If he hits you once, he WILL hit you again.
- If he says no to a condom, he’s not the one for you.
- Trust your instincts. Being polite can kill you…
Women tend to be polite. We don’t like to make people feel bad or to upset the normal flow of things. This is often what hurts us most. About 7 years ago I was grocery shopping at Big Y in Worcester, MA. I wheeled my cart into the parking lot when a man offered to help me with my groceries. I politely declined. He then insisted that he had time. I opened my trunk and he took a bag out of my cart and put it in my trunk. My women’s instinct was to smile and try not to be offensive. Unfortunately for him, my Marie Christine instinct was not so much. I saw a man and his girlfriend across the parking aisle get into their truck.
To set the scene a bit, Worcester is “townie” town. Have you seen “Good Will Hunting”? I would like to say that’s Hollywood BS but it’s actually very accurate. Anywho, I immediately scan the parking lot to calculate my options. I realize that electrician-looking-townie and girlfriend in pick up truck are my best bet. I wave to the man to wave him over. He looks confused. His girlfriend looks pissed. Who TF is that old lady waving you over?! I wave again, he points at himself, I nod. The normal looking but over-the-line man keeps putting my bags in my trunk. I wave again. Townie-electrician, confused, starts to walk over. His girlfriend, pissed and ready to fight me, follows.
They arrive at my car. My favorite thing about townies (I’m a townie so I’m allowed to trash talk myself) is that they/we are entirely predictable in a fight or flight situation. We fight. ALWAYS. Even if it’s not a good idea. I look at electrician-townie-guy and girlfriend and say: This guy followed me to my car. I told him to leave and he won’t leave. He’s trying to hurt me.
Townie girlfriend changes from who-is-this-bitch mode to this-guy-is-going-down mode. Maybe-Electrician-Guy gets in trunk-weirdo’s face. Both he and his girlfriend get into it. They tell me to get into my car and leave and they will stay with trunk-weirdo for 5 minutes until I’m long gone. Moral of the story… what would have happened if I was polite? He would have gone away? I would still be in his basement tied to a pole? Not thrilled considering those options. Don’t be polite. Trust you instincts. Thank you Maybe-Electrician and Pissed-Off-Confused-Girlfriend.
- Scream. As loud as you can.
- Never go to a second location. If you are nervous AT ALL, never go to a second location. Ask around. Don’t.
- Go for the eyes. Women have tendency to be maternal. Hurting someone’s eyes is permanent. Who cares. Go for the eyes. It’s you or him.
- Find a mom with kids.
I’ve always told my kids this. There is a really cool dvd for kids by John Walsh and I can’t remember the name of it right now and I’m too lazy right now to google it. Find a mom with kids. My kids got Sooooo sick of hearing me say this. One day, my youngest daughter was going to kindergarten for the first time. She was taking a school bus for the first time. She went to kindergarten a year early (because she insisted because she is so Gigi). They put her on the wrong bus and let her off at a random city bus stop. Her first thought “Find a mom with kids”. She ran to a mom with kids and told her she was lost. That mom called the school, and the school called me. I think this rule applies to anyone age 1 -101. If you’re in trouble, find a mom with kids. A mom with kids will take care of fucking business y’all. Trust me. This should probably be rule #1. MOM WITH KIDS.
- Kindness is the most important thing. Everything else is a distant second.
It took me 40 years to figure this one out. You can seek out any other characteristic in a friend/lover/boss/peer/team member. But if they don’t ALSO have kindness, it’s never going to work out. Kindness is a baseline necessity. Democrat, Republican, Alien, Anarchist… if you start with kindness you’re more likely to succeed.
- Too skinny is bad. Too fat is bad.
- If your roommate/sister/mom/dog doesn’t like him… listen.
- Pepper spray washes off, a cracked skull doesn’t. Don’t be afraid to use the tools you’ve been given. (see prior comment on trust your instincts/don’t be polite).
This is probably my favorite GIF of all time. #BlondeMarieChristine
My oldest daughter recently asked me to teach her how to shoot a gun. I said “Fuck no!”. True story. I asked why? She said: “I don’t wan’t to be afraid of guns”. I said “If you aren’t afraid of guns, you shouldn’t be using them”. Granted, this is a tough one. I’ve recently inquired about reinstating my conceal carry permit that I let expire years ago. I’ve thought of having a rifle and just storing it in a location far from the actual bullets just in case Zombie Apocalypse (aka Trump Administration who the fuck knows).
Funny side story, my schedule didn’t sync up with the conceal carry class yet. In the meantime the teacher sent me an invitation to attend a “Ladies Conceal Carry Fashion Show”. I was like ahhhhh ok thanks but no. I’m not going to be a trendy 2nd amendment stomper… I’m going so I can blast douche bags like you if they try to get into my house… conceal and carry fashion show? What in the actual fuck? Will I even be able to attend this conceal carry class without getting stabby or just literally laughing in someone’s face? I honestly have no idea.
Anywho, I tried to explain to my daughter that you can’t teach people to be decisive or prepared. You either are or you aren’t. This goes back to my last blog a bit about whether I’m hurting my kids by not allowing them to suffer… hmmmm.
I was thinking recently about the game “Perfection”. Have you ever played this game? You try to put plastic shapes into the corresponding spaces on a game board before a buzzer goes off. If you don’t make it in time, the board pops up and all of the pieces fly up into your face. I used to play this game with my daughter. Every time the pieces popped up she would scream and fall over. Even though she knew it was coming, she still couldn’t control her reaction. THIS is what I’m talking about. Either you scream when the pieces pop up, or you don’t. This is not something that can be learned once you’re past a certain age. I don’t scream… she does. My fault for not properly preparing her? Perhaps. But I digress… I do know what will happen if someone threatens me… it’s not a secret…
I still might get the hidden rifle, but there’s no way she’s going near it. I did get her some pepper spray. The first time I handed it to her I showed her how to use it, and while holding it she aimed it at my face accidentally twice. So… yea… a gun is not happening for you kid.
Anyway.. off track. Summary: Fuck being polite it’s ok for a minute, until it’s not. Trust your instincts. Don’t let your guard down. People are generally good, except when they aren’t.
Condensed summary: #MeToo