August 02, 2010
A couple years ago, when I was working as a receptionist at a chemical distribution plant, I was at a company picnic at a local amusement park. My twins, Tolkien and Indigo, who were six at the time, were off riding rides with their fifteen year old sister and I was standing around talking with the warehouse guys. It was later in the day. The picnic had been going on for a while. One of my coworkers, Edward, who was about four beers in, suddenly said, “Well, I’d better go make my rounds while the single moms are open to suggestion.”
“Hey!” I said.
“Oh, sorry, Gloria,” Edward said. “Didn’t realize you were there.”
Having spent most of my life as one of the guys, I’ve developed a pretty thick skin for the things guys say to each other when ladies aren’t around. I laughed off Edward’s comment and, really, it didn’t bother me; I happen to know that Edward is an especially nice person, and I understood he didn’t mean me specifically. Yet, his words stayed with me.