Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Some Girls

In our very PC culture, I find that I get asked what it's like being a female. Especially when it comes to the guitar life. What's up with that?

I don't think I ever really realized that girls were different from boys. When I picked up the guitar, my world became two worlds -- those who played and those who didn't. I never realized that I was the only girl in my universe who played. I never got any special treatment. I carried and set up my own gear and rented the truck when I needed a truck.

One day I got a questionnaire from a feminist group asking me about my music. Did I have a message? Do I play to a particular audience? Have I ever been discriminated against because I was a girl? Stuff like that.

I answered honestly: I play to the crowd, my message is "lessez les bontemps rouler" and I have never been a guy, so I don't know if I've been discriminated against, because I only have the experience of being a girl. I am sure those were not the right answers, but they were mine and I mailed them back. I never heard from that group again. I actually felt that the feminists discriminated against me because I didn't answer the thing right.

Now that I'm older I still don't really feel I've ever suffered discrimination. I try to teach my girls that Job One is to go out into the world, be true to yourself, and be the best you can be to others.

It could be that I'm just denser than most. It could be that my mother - despite sharp warnings from her other immigrant friends - came to Canada and opened a retail store with nothing more than a bank loan. My mother probably was the only woman in her circle to do such a thing, but I honestly did not notice. She was a great boss - #1 in her shopping center in sales per square foot for many years, loyal staff, great Christmas parties.

It never dawned on me that Mum was the only one who sat at the card table with the guys while the other women watched TV in the den. Or that the people calling asking for my mum were Harry, Louie or Jack. Dare I dwell on it? Laissez les bontemps rouler!

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