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.