“And then he implied that the only reason he’d failed the course was because his lecturer was a lesbian! Or, not implied, actually—he out-and-out said that!”

“Funny.”

“Incredibly funny. Butler would not have been happy. You know, what is funny, is that they say the West is more ‘educated’ when it comes to gender insensitivity. I mean, racial insensitivity I can understand—if he had claimed that the lecturer had failed him because he was an Afro-Dane objecting to his air of white privilege (which, don’t deny it, he does have), but a white lesbian? He took the unenlightened view that a white lesbian failed him because he couldn’t charm himself into her pants? Honestly!”

“Well, it does take all kinds to make the world. Even the western one.”

“And what’s all this I hear about women earning less than men because of the chance that they might get pregnant and abandon their jobs? This is Denmark, for christ’s sake! Land of the vikings! And viking women who wielded a longsword as well as any of their men folk!”

“I don’t think that’s true. In fact, I’m pretty sure the women stayed at home and looked after the kids. And I’m more than sure that you’re learning all your viking trivia from the show ‘Vikings’, which , I’m terribly sad to inform you, is made by a couple of Irishmen who have all their facts wrong.”

“Still. It just doesn’t sit right with me. I came here to study feminism precisely because I thought I could take some ideas back home! And all I’ve learned so far is that lesbian teachers are wont to fail flirty heterosexual men and women should be paid less because they are entitled to paid maternity leave.”

“Six months of paid maternity leave! it adds up.”

“Not to me it doesn’t.”

“It should. That’s a hell of a lot of money to be earning sitting at home and taking care of your kids.”

“You’ve got it totally wrong. Like everyone else, you’re not seeing the full picture. What does every economic system in the world depend on? That’s right, Sherlock, workers! And who’s producing those workers? Women! Women are the fulcrum. They should be paid more than the men AND still get six months fully paid maternity leave. It’s only fair.”

“So long as I am not terribly mistaken, I am pretty certain that both men and women are involved in the production of these workers you’re talking about.”

“Don’t flatter yourself. It’s over in three pumps for you lot.”

“Excuse me? Who exactly have you been taking to bed with you? Three pumps? My dear, you deserve so much more than just three pumps.”

“Don’t you wink at me! I might be forced to fail you in your upcoming exams.”

“Ha. You’re hilarious.”

“I’m going to choose to ignore the sarcasm and graciously accept your compliment.”

“Whatever. You want more coffee?”

“I can’t. I have to go.”

“Your face is flushed and you’re not meeting my eyes. Where exactly are you going?”

“I have plans.”

“What kind of plans?”

“I’m…you know…errands. And dinner with a friend.”

“Which friend?”

“None of your damn business.”

“Oh my god. You’re going back to fuck him, aren’t you?”

“And so what if I am?”

“But you just spent the hour bitching him out! Gender insensitivity, white privilege, blah blah…”

“I know.”

“So what’s your excuse?”

“He has a nice cock.”

“That’s it?”

“And he uses mild racial insults in bed when I ask him to. It really gets me off. You know, relatively tame stuff: ‘You filthy brown whore’ Things like that.”

“Oh you are bad. You are so bad.”

“I think you mean liberated.”

“Liberated? You let him insult you in bed. It gets you off! Please explain to me how that isn’t playing right into the hands of the patriarchy.”

“Because I ask for it. It’s a choice. And it’s a choice I feel good about.”

“I don’t buy it. This is just come subconscious need to be spanked by daddy.”

“Oh my god, I cannot believe you just said that. I have no subconscious need to be spanked by my father. That is the single most disgusting thing I have ever heard!”

“Again, I don’t buy it. You should be telling this guy off, not getting him off, you feminist hypocrite.”

“I’m sticking to my guns and I’m also refusing to get into this tired old argument when there is sex on offer elsewhere.”

“Whatever. Just know that if it were me in this situation, I’d be the one spanking him instead. You have no idea how much it gets them off.”

“Oh my god, you are filthy. I’m leaving.”

“Fine, suit yourself. But hey…listen…if he ever gets tired of you and wants to bat for the other team for a bit, give him my number?”

“Oh my god, you’re unbelievable.”

But I’m grinning. And so is he. I reach over to give him a peck on the lips, collect my things, and leave safe in that knowledge that this, like everything else I do in my life, is entirely my choice.

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