I don’t think it comes as a surprise to anyone that I am not really a wholly generous and giving person. I mean, I try to not behave like a total sociopath but my desire to accommodate other members of the human species ends when they want my seat on an airplane. Especially when I have a much better seat than they do.
I fly fairly frequently and, consequently, have been asked on multiple occasions to trade seats with someone so they can sit next to their partner, kids, the aisle, the window, the front of the plane, the back of the plane, etc. My willingness to do so depends on a lot of factors, ranging from my mood to how long the flight is.
I haven’t yet had someone request that I move because I am a woman, but I’m pretty well prepared to tell them no if that were to happen. There have been a few stories lately about Orthodox Jewish men requesting seat changes on airlines to accommodate their religious belief that they cannot sit next to women.
Look, if you are so opposed to possibly brushing up against a woman in the least sexual way humanly possibly (in a crowded and smelly tin can thousands of feet in the air), then buy two plane tickets. Or travel with men. Or stay home.
But do not expect me to give up my seat to accommodate your misogyny. Your right to practice your religion ends where my armrest begins.
I pretty much disregard all advice that starts out with something along the lines of “Well it used to be better back in the olden days.” You should too. Perhaps the writer is nostalgic for a time that they see as better, but they rarely connect the dots between their specific issue and the larger context.
Take, for example, this bit of lamenting about how things used to be (no evidence for things actually being this way, apparently we’re supposed to regard the author as an expert on the history of American dating culture.)
No. 3 – I’ll pick you up at your place
There’s a reason we don’t do this anymore. It’s called serial killers. Oh and the growing autonomy of women to transport themselves wherever they damn well please.
No. 5 – Dinner, not coffee, not drinks
Has the author never been on a terrible date? I have. You know what makes a date even more terrible? When you realize your date is a raging misogynist before the appetizer arrives. Or racist. Or wrote this article. Or wants kids. (Okay, maybe one of those is only for me.)
No. 8 – The guy is supposed to pick up the tab
No. This is false. And heteronormative.
No. 9 – He’s supposed to take – or walk – you home
Do you not watch Criminal Minds? This is how people die horrendously painful deaths.
The rest of the suggestions are, as you would expect, also heteronormative, misogynistic and terrible.