Wednesday, August 29, 2012

A recent toast

I was at a relatively female heavy conference recently. The modal conference I attend has about a 1:10 F:M ratio. This one was about 1:4. This fact was toasted several times, by men and women alike, at the conference dinner. One gentleman (he is of the age and class where the word gentleman is still appropriate) stood up, and after declaiming the history of the building we were dining in, told us how grateful he was that we are no longer living in a world where we would not be returning to our respective monasteries after the conclusion of this conference; that the current situation allowed him to interact with his "monastic sisters"; that he is happy to see this change occur in his field over his lifetime.

Some of us rolled our eyes at each other at the slightly patronizing tone of his comment, and were immediately, simultaneously, aware of how lucky we were to be in a room with enough women to be able to roll our eyes, and also aware that his age and experience perhaps allows for some condescension to what must seem a supremely young crowd gathered at his knees.

Here's to old men who get it in their own ways and really care.

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