Thursday, April 27, 2006

Prepare Your Kids Early For A Life Of Soul-Crushing Corporate Drudgery

Today is Take Our Daughters To Work Day, which, in my elementary school days, I believed was an inequity worse than the nineteenth-century struggle for suffrage and Title IX combined. How come they got to skip a day of school? Now that I'm actually in the working world, paying taxes and mailing out a COBRA check every month, the whole idea behind taking your kids to work just seems ill-conceived.

The thing is, and prepare to have your mind blown now, grown-up work sucks. Arrested Development aside, what exactly are our kids supposed to learn by following their parent or legal guardian around the office?

Parent: Well, you can see how Mommy fills out budget reports, enters data into Excel, then discusses last-minute product spec updates with our dipweed sales team, and at lunchtime, I punch the soda machine because it's been out of Mountain Dew since February.
Poor daughter: So, when's recess?
The whole point — reinforcing that girls don't have to be wives and houseslaves while their husbands rule the remote control — feels superfluous to me: antiquated mental hygeine filmstrips aside, I never heard anyone but the Catholic Church say being a girl made you unfit for any profession.

I can imagine that there are cases, like I'd bet there are more social and cultural encumbrances to a woman being a firefighter than a man, but I think the Ms. Foundation, in its zealotry for equality, forgot that most people never get their dream job regardless of their gender. You're either not smart enough to be a doctor or not lucky enough to be the next American Idol or don't have the connections to get into venture capital. I, for one, would rather spend my adult years making arts and crafts with glitter and have someone read me a story because we finished our lesson half an hour early than fill out a goddamn TPS report. At least as a homemaker, I wouldn't have a dotted-line boss to report to. Don't even get me started on devil's work of commuting.

Now I'm less bitter about the Take Our Offspring To Work Day back in elementary school. It was probably tedious for the daughters, unproductive for the office, and good for Steinem, who thrives on the blood and tears of the working class too busy to give a damn about Susan Faludi. I say let the kids enjoy their childhood (just as long as you keep them away from me). By the time they get through high school, they'll be jaded and disillusioned enough to move into the corporate world.