10 Nov

What is it with men when they’re in the company of other men and only one woman that breeds the idea that calling a woman “sweetie” or (worse) “sweetie pie” is in ANY way acceptable?

Now, I’m not exactly the kind of gal who can easily be described as “sweet”. I possess certain attributes that may be associated with “sweet” (generally good person, charitable, hospitable, well-mannered, respectful, etc), but I’m really too prickly to be “sweet”. Sometimes I wish I were “sweeter”, but… I’m not.

THREE times in the past week I have been called “sweetie [pie]”. Three. Once in a work context, twice in my sailing course.*

Although, perhaps, it was least called for from my colleague, at least I could respond in severe tones: ‘How interesting that you still think I’m “sweet”. Be sure to tell your client that the opposing counsel is “sweet” and let’s hope for the best.’ (Us lawyers should be capable of taking as well as we give.)

It was a little trickier with the sailing instructors. Of course, the mere reaction to the use of “sweetie” to describe the only woman present in the “classroom”** by that woman would probably strip anyone of the idea that the afore-mentioned woman is any way “sweet”. But being known as the “ragingsnarkybitch” is also far from ideal. Especially when we’re stuck on a boat for an entire afternoon.

So I kind of made a small joke: “Just because I [made a bad call / am the cleverest in the class] doesn’t mean you can swear at me!” And sat there seething in disbelief for the rest of the afternoon with the result that I either made more bad calls (but no more “sweetie” – so I achieved one objective) or started making silly mistakes such that I was no longer the cleverest in the class (so no more reason to warmly refer to me as “sweetie pie”). Urgh.

In lighter news: I love Wednesday mornings the most! These are the mornings which we dedicate to walking up the mountain before work. This is superb because:

  1. It is excellent to get in a good hour + of exercise before the day begins.
  2. Cowboy’s excitement levels when he realises we are actually going for an early walk are priceless. 
  3. It fills the soul to be on the mountain in the first light.
  4. Nothing makes one feel more superior than watching our fellow Capetonians snaking along in the traffic while we are marching along in the fresh mountain air. There’s a definite air of smugness to the nod and smile that fellow early morning walkers give as they pass each other.


*By TWO different instructors.

** Once was on the boat, once in the classroom.


3 Responses to “sweetie!???!!!”

  1. Moonbeam McQueen 11 November 2010 at 6:51 am #

    Love this! “Sweetie” and “Babe.” Once is fine, but when it replaces your real name, it gets a little old.

    Your mountain walk sounds so peaceful and fantastic. What a way to start the day!

    • stofnsara 11 November 2010 at 9:27 am #

      Yes: I’m not partial to many terms of endearment along the lines of “sweetie” and “babe”, but each couple to their own. However, when it comes from someone who is little more than a stranger – and in a male-dominated environment where nobody else is calling each other anything other than their names – it drives me nuts.

  2. Jo 11 November 2010 at 11:13 pm #

    Ummm, and you’re now even more awesome. Because I always think of these things but don’t ever say them! Can you please stop making me love you?!

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