When I was a high school junior, Congress passed Title IX. Hadn't a clue what it was about. I could do anything. Even AP math. Then our teacher got a grant for a computer -- then, a golden toy in a mere high school. Told me and the other AP math girl that only boys could use it. You know how illogical girls are. Found a job as a junior copywriter after college. Was warned to hide typing skills lest I’d get only secretarial work. Remuneration still turned out to be less than a fellow male grad. whose GPA, etc, was lower than mine, Explanation? Women get dinners bought for them; men have to buy dinner. So… unequal pay is fair because of dates you may never have? Huffed off to grad school. Thought grad school thoughts. Then began life as a tech writin' corporate cog. Helped my husband go to medical school in the deepest south. Such chivalry. Such chauvinism, Extraordinary – Learned how coddled men were. As typing pools became passe, management discovered Lots of men couldn’t type. I got paid time and a half to type their work. To restate: I had to do my technical, skilled work for what a woman made, but taking on extra, stereotypical women's work -- of which my male colleagues were incapable – got me paid like a man. Such a bottom-line, logical-like-a-man decision. Times change, for good and bad. Hope it’s better for my daughter and daughters-in-law. If nothing else, my sons learned to keyboard. Sounds like a much more manly, remunerative skill than typing!
Author’s note: This poem is a misreading of the prompt for April 6. The next post is what I should have done. For this poem, Miles Franklin supplied the title; Dorothy Parker, the phrase “What Fresh Hell Is This?” and an advertisement, the picture of the typewriter.