Around The Rim Country

Giving women their say

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This is a self-serving attempt to make up in one column for all the slights both perceived and imagined that I have visited upon the gender feminine.

These slights include, but are not limited to:

A recent column in which I implied that dancing ought to be banned in the Rim country, thereby incurring the universal wrath of all womankind because of their belief that dancing is preferable to virtually any other activity on earth, not to mention its historical significance.

Another recent column in which I quoted a half dozen or so famous people who said famous things in quote books none of whom were women. I am told I was thereby implying that women have nothing famous to say.

Yet another recent column in which I introduced Jim's Book Club, a blatant rip-off of Oprah's Book Club. I might have gotten away with this one had I not chosen Roger Welsch's "Love, Sex and Tractors" as the inaugural selection. Roger, to put it delicately, is arguably one of the biggest male chauvinist pigs in these United States, and maybe the entire world.

Even so, I might have pulled this off had I not chosen to feature Roger's particular claim to fame, the Male Generic Apology that can be used for any and all occasions when men commit unpardonable transgressions against women. Unfortunately, a last ditch part of that apology includes offering to take the offended woman dancing, thereby compounding my sin past the point of redemption.

So that is how I got to this sorry state, from which I intend to extricate myself with the second installment of Jim's Book Club, in which we review and discuss a very female-oriented book, "And Then She Said...: More Quotations by Women for Every Occasion," compiled by J.D. Zahniser (Caillech Press, available from Amazon.com for $7.99).

"And Then She Said...." is organized by topics, much like the male-dominated quote books. Among many choice comments, is one by French writer Germaine de Stael that kind of sets the tone: "The more I see of men the more I like dogs."

In much the same vein, we have the following gems:

"Don't accept rides from strange men and remember all men are strange as hell." Robin Morgan, radical feminist.

"If you catch a man, throw him back." Australian women's liberation slogan.

"One hell of an outlay for a very small return with most of them." Glenda Jackson, British actor

Continuing to punish myself, we turn next to the category known simply as "Gender," wherein we find the following, the first of which is especially appropriate to male Rimaroos:

"If the world were a logical place, men would ride side-saddle." Rita Mae Brown, feminist and novelist.

"Men and women, women and men. It will never work." Erica Jong, writer.

From the combined categories, "Woman's Role" and "Woman's Status," we cull these pearls of wisdom:

"To be killed or to be married is the usual woman's fate." Adele M. Fielde, writer

"A woman needs to have five times as much ability as a man in order to do the same thing." Harriet Strong, California businesswoman.

Now that I'm back in the good graces of women, we have only the matter of dancing to deal with. While I could find no specific mention of the subject in "And Then She Said...," I did find a quote that could be about nothing else.

Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Edna St. Vincent Millay said, "Set the foot down with distrust on the crust of the world it is thin."

Writer Jean Kerr once penned an interesting definition of hope: "Hope is the feeling you have that the feeling you have isn't permanent."

"Love, I find, is like singing," Hurston wrote. "Everybody can do enough to satisfy themselves, though it may not impress the neighbors as being very much."

Now that I'm back in the good graces of womandom, we have only the matter of dancing to deal with. While I could find no specific mention of the subject in "And Then She Said...," I did find a quote that could be about nothing else.

Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Edna St. Vincent Millay said, "Set the foot down with distrust on the crust of the world it is thin."

Based on this statement, I think we can finally put this matter to rest. The less dancing that goes on in this fragile world of ours, the less chance of breaking through the earth's crust.

Sorry ladies, but on the dancing issue, guys aren't budging.

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