Rude Women

For the past several rides and the past several car trips, I’ve been keeping track – a rough tally – on common courtesies. Surprisingly, women do not come out of it very well.

This arose because it was my vague impression that women don’t seem to say ‘thanks’ very much and I thought I’d better do some counting to see if my vague impression was true. It seems to be.

Something like seven times out of ten, when I think I can reasonably expect an acknowledgement of thanks – letting people out into a queue, waiting for someone and so on – or a simple ‘hello’ or similar as a passing pleasantry, women don’t live up to expectations. In contrast, it’s about eight out of ten the other way around for men.

I’m talking about both driving and cycling, with the ‘passing pleasantry’ measure only applying to cycling of course – passing other cyclists or walkers.

I have no idea why this should be. I can speculate all I like, but I’ve no idea. There could be more fear of casual acquaintances somehow getting out of hand but surely that won’t apply to most vehicle-to-vehicle instances. There could be something deep down to do with brain function or concentration or spatial awareness or something, and some kind of difference between the sexes that’s deep-seated and hard-wired. That raises that inevitably awkward issue of ‘our over-arching task’ on this planet, and whether it is to overcome the animal in us, the ‘natural’. Surely, if we can be aware of it, we can overcome it. Giving in to ‘nature’ only selectively is a very difficult position to maintain.

It might be that what I’m demonstrating is some kind of stupidity on my own part – for thinking that women would be at least as polite as men. Perhaps I’m daft for making assumptions like that. Perhaps women are just inherently rude. That seems a tad iffy as a conclusion though.

I think it is definitely a gender-based observation; I’m coming across the people I’m counting for this mini-study in similar circumstances. If a male in X context can act in such and such way, you would imagine a female could too.

I just don’t know. At least it seems my vague impressions match-up with reality, which is sort of reassuring.

I’m just off to Cornwall for a week or so, and I suppose it would be valid and interesting to continue this study elsewhere in the country. I’m not sure I’m that interested though, and besides, Cornwall isn’t necessarily going to have many Cornish people in it, especially not at this time of year.