I was at a business meeting last night, complete with potluck. It was fun, and easy, and we are all getting to know each other better. It was mostly your usual chit-chat, hanging-out conversation. Until the pig-snort happened.
There were several women getting food when this guy starts making fun of us for taking seconds. "Look, all the women are out here getting more, while the men are still on their first round." None of us really said anything, because what do you say to mysoginist and adolescent crap like that? Anyway, since he didn't get much of a response, he decided it would be a good idea to keep going. "What's up with all the girls?" etc. Then he started making pig noises.
I like to think of myself as a grown up. I like to think that I surround myself with relatively sensitive and caring people. These were, after all, counselors. Even pig snort is a counselor! I felt like space invaders had landed on my planet.
I am going to give him the benefit of the doubt, and assume he felt comfortable with at least one of us "girls," since he knows her better than the rest of us. Maybe they have an inside joke? But, we were at a BUSINESS meeting, for crying out loud, with people (like me, for example), that this guy doesn't know very well, and with whom he has to work. One of us (ahem!) might think that pig snorts are out of line.
I will say it again: WTF?
At the time, we were in the middle of a MEETING, so when everybody laughed it off, I kindof ignored it. But now I wish I hadn't. If I don't stick up for myself, or for other women, who will? That kind of shit will never stop, and it will continue to be "funny," when in fact it is FRICKEN' RUDE, not to mention really insensitive and hurtful, and propagates hate. As you know, I don't like to see hate propagated, especially in "safe" places, like work is supposed to be for me.
Since I have been stewing over this all night, I am now trying to figure out how to approach him about it. I am not willing to have that happen again, but I don't want to come off like all of the things that get hurled at women when they put their foot down about being treated badly. I don't want to seem like a bitch, a cry-baby, a whiner, or a pain in the ass. Or, maybe I do. I will have to think about that...
Really, though, I feel kindof confused and vulnerable. Is it worth talking to him about it? Should I cast my pearls before swine? Does anybody have any suggestions for dealing with pig snort? Something has to be done, and I do want to be effective and assertive, maybe even nice about it. It would be great if he heard me, and was a little more mindful. He's probably more likely to do that if I am nice about it. But I also want that kind of crap to stop, especially in places I work. What would you do? I need some advice, people. The lines are open.