Monday, August 22, 2005

Some (Quite Random) Thoughts on the Workplace

Disjointed, possibly nonsensical thoughts follow. Sorry.

1. The more women try to act like men, the more their own desires and purposes are thwarted and frustrated. Do I think it's okay for a woman to be in the workplace? Yep--I'm here. But "working woman" doesn't have to translate to "man." Have women not figured this out in 50-plus years?

2. Which reminds me. Do you remember those horrible working-gal blouses from the 1980's with the hulking bow at the neck? Ack.

3. Which reminds me. Was I the only little girl who had no idea why the three ladies in 9 to 5 were laughing so hard when they smoked their, um, cigarettes? What a bizarre movie that was, in retrospect.

4. Do young women who show up for interviews think they are dressed appropriately when they are showing cleavage and/or skintight shirts and/or low-slung pants?

Okay, that's not fair of me. I actually do think they believe they are "dressing up," and that their attire is appropriate. These are sweet, studious girls we're talking about. They have no idea how they look to professional workers. Their attire, though pitifully wrong for the office, is their interpretation of what they see in Cosmo and Glamour. Can I really fault them for how they're dressed when neither their mothers nor their fashion mavens have taught them differently? Not in my heart of hearts.

As they get older, many of them will be better able to recognize and implement their own taste and style, and they'll be equipped through experience and observation to dress appropriately for the workplace (and everywhere else).

I hope.

But when I see them, and then think of some of the get-ups I sported (feeling quite grown-up and attractive, mind you), I wince, and I can't help but believe that the passage of time will--for some of them, at least--bring a change for the better.