Friday, October 3, 2008

Who Killed Chivalry?

Some of my feminist friends complained the other day that men weren't chivalrous enough anymore. A simple question I asked as an answer, who killed chivalry? While this is not going to be an exercise in crime solving, one would certainly be on the premise that chivalry is not something that can be demanded. The more rudely you tell us to be polite, the harder we'll fight our good intentions.
A simple example that comes to my mind, are Delhi buses. Over the last week, Delhi buses have been the inspiration for a lot of ideas. I was pushed aside while alighting a bus because the bugger next to me thought he was too smart to get in line. I retorted to myself, " The one thing I hate about a lot of people in India is that anything goes", and pop came the last post, bits of it popping in my head as I took the bus ride back home.
The very next day, as I sat on the side of the bus reserved for the ladies (because that was the only seat available), a lady came from behind, tapped me on my shoulder with that pointy, condescending finger and just said, "Haan bhaiya?" rather curtly if I may say so. I understood her intention, and I got up for the seat was rightfully hers. But I didn't do so very willingly. I would've got up if she hadn't been so rude about it. Her condescension only made me want to sit till kingdom come and let her scream. I don't really oppose this idea of reserving seats in the bus for women. It quite rightly follows the idea that not all men our chivalrous. However, I do implore some of these women to take into consideration, the fact that some of us could have had "Crazy, Long Day" stamped all over our faces, when they mirthfully yanked us off our posterior-pleasing thrones and made us hang by the bus railings for that extra half our while the bus driver was simulating the Delhi Grand Prix 2008. And I assure you, I have always relinquished my seat to a lady who was not able bodied, or when the bus was uncomfortably crowded. It boiled my blood on one occasion where a woman in her twenties made an old gentleman get up. Lack of consideration, is what is killing chivalry. If you're able bodied, and the bus is not crowded enough to permit unintentional yet unsolicited physical contact, why make a distinction? And if you must campaign for that distinction, why must you then cringe about not being treated as an equal on these grounds?
I beseech my (able-bodied) (meant in as non-flirtatious a way as possible) female friends to have faith in the institution of chivalry and keep alive its female counterpart, if exists.


Anonymous said...

given the (i hope only largely) female readership of this blog, it's the perfect place to have such a post!

Wanderer said...

why yes of course...i'm guessing you'd like to have this conversation?!

Anonymous said... thank you.
all i will say is 'i don't know who killed chivalry. it definitely wasn't me though!'

Anonymous said...

Reminds me of the time I was traveling in a bus with this guy I fancied.We were sitting NOT on the ladies seat but on the same side.A woman came and told him to get up. Just like that.

Wanderer said...

yeah see...thats the kinda extra liberty taking that I hate! do leave ur name next time round :), unless u are on some sort of a feminist lynching list!

Anonymous said...

Question: Why can men be told to get up from seats reserved for "mahilaas" but not the other way round?

Females revel in and take advantage of the fact that we men provide for them, they sit in the reserved as well as the general seats and THEN the feminists come marching in sayin men and women are "equal" and even women are "better" than men (watever dat means..)

It boils my blood that women are so fast to enjoy the provisions of this supposedly "male dominated" society but not gracious enough to recognise them.

If only they'd understand (like some do) that we men would do anyyyything for them if only they asked nicely!

Wanderer said...

i understand your pain shrey, precisely the point I'm making.
we'd do anything for them IF they asked nicely AND were pretty :D

Anonymous said...

wanderer, shrey..maybe women do ask good looking men nicely...just a thought!

Shrey said...

y do I get the feeling anonymous is Jaya...?