Friday, January 9, 2009

Mean Girls

Many years ago, in an adult Sunday school class, the teacher (astonishingly, female – No, wait…it wasn’t that it was astonishing that she was female, it was astonishing to me that as a female she said this)…anyway, she stated: “Men are from Mars, women are from Venus.”

As a single, volatile feminist (at the time – okay, I’m still volatile), I got highly offended, and spent the rest of the lesson glaring at her.

But I’ve come to realize the truth of that cliché’d statement. Men ARE from Mars. Mars was considered the God of War in ancient mythology. Roman military men revered him second only to Jupiter in importance in military affairs. And women…well, women are most definitely from Venus. Venus was the Goddess of Love (HA!), but in truth she was pampered, spoiled, temperamental, unfaithful and fickle.

I’ve noticed that when men find themselves in conflict they often resolve it physically. They beat the crap out of each other, drag themselves up out of the mud, exchange sheepish looks, shake hands and become best friends. (On a global scale, war is a bit like that…but without the sheepish, hand-shaking part.)

Women…ah, women on the other hand do NOT end up being best friends. Mostly because, at the beginning of the conflict, they WERE friends and then, at the end, they’re…um…NOT. Women fight dirty. (In an emotional sense, not in a rolling around in the mud sense.) And they hold grudges…FOREVER. Shake hands?? More like pull hair and gouge eyes…well, perhaps emotionally, rather than a physically. (Okay, sometimes physically.)

Up until last summer I was friends with a group of women, and we’d gotten along pretty well (with a few potholes and exit ramps along the way). But things got ugly, stuff happened, and people got deleted from whatever website/email list/bookmarks they’d been on. (And, in all fairness, there was blame on MANY sides…mine included.) But we’d all returned to our corners, nursed our wounds…and moved on. Or so I thought. But over the holidays I received (out of the blue) a copy of an email that had been part of the whole, nasty mess. The strange thing is that I’d received it from someone I’d never met and who was never part of our group. (Although she was friends with someone involved.) She sent it via MySpace, and then in what she probably thought was the height of cleverness, but which I prefer to term “cowardice,” she immediately blocked me. So I was not able to reply, or find out where she’d gotten it (I’d a pretty good idea), or why she was sending it, and what on earth was going on.

It was the cyber-equivalent of a drive-by shooting. Swift, anonymous and calculated to cause carnage.

It did.

Hopefully I’ve learned my lesson – that discretion is the better part of valor, and in the future I have resolved to ignore the ignoble, focus on the future, and continue to move on, increasing the deletions mentioned above. A somewhat battered survivor of Ghastly Girlish Guerilla Warfare.

In all those Beauty Pageants (oh, excuse me – Scholarship Programs), you hear the eternal wishes and hopes for World Peace. I have increasing doubts that this will ever happen…not because of US-Russian relations, not because of Chinese aggression, not because of continuing Mid-East conflicts.

No we shall never achieve World Peace, as long as half of its inhabitants wear underwires.


  1. I agree. Some of my most violent conflicts have been with women. Unless you can get them to cry together. Somehow, oddly enough, that is the factor of peace and friendship. Women who cry together, stay together. Women who are angry? Watch out!

  2. So true! Why are we like that? On the other hand, Women also have the most compassionate natures, and nurturing souls. I wonder how our gender can be so catty, yet also so loving?