We Can Do It.

So recently anyone who’s friends with me might have an idea that I’ve been working hard at a new job. In December I was hired to be a Ski Technician because yes, I live in a tourist town that turns into nothing but snowboarders, and skiers in winter.

When they asked me, “Are you sure you want to be a ski tech?” and I saw that all my coworkers would be guys I got really excited. Not because of stupid reasons but because it was just me, my brother, and dad for a while growing up, and I loved being in a guy environment. By the end of my first week of work as a Ski Tech, I was breaking out from hormonal acne, and crying at home while studying for Ski Technician certification tests. hahahaha. What exactly happens when you step into an arena filled with the opposite sex?

rosie2The war on women is a very real thing in society; there is definitely an invisible line between the sexes, and of course women are considered to be underneath men. If you’re in denial about this then please go check yourself into a mental institution. Its hard to live as a woman (society wants you to be a hundred pounds, the best dressed, Kim K contour makeup, no real feelings, and an acrobat in the bedroom) and you’re supposed to live how society wants you to live…in this perfect little woman box with woman jobs. I mean, BIC even has Pens for women! Society has such high expectations for a sex that has such low respect. Getting hired into a guy position and walking into the tech room (a room full of tools, machines that could take your arm off, and things that catch on fire) I felt like I was stepping into the Hunger Games with all guy opponents. I was the Katniss, and representation of my whole sex. How well was the “girl” going to hold her own? Those are the first initial feelings working a considered “guy” job.

The first thing that’s needed to be successful as a woman in this environment is having the right kind of guy coworkers. The ones who take you just as serious as they do their buddies, and who see you as a coworker despite the boobs on your chest. You need guys that truly want to help you succeed, and don’t view you as a threatening girl that can do their job too. You also don’t want your coworkers to see you as a possible rump in the sheets, and for yourself too, don’t be that girl. The guys I work with are amazing in that area; I am their equal, they help me, but they also expect me to carry my weight.

rosie

As hard as you try, you will not be one of the guys. You will in the way that you can hang out, make jokes, and yeah we all grab a beer after work sometimes. But just know that you might not be friends on social media, or invited to other hangouts because yes, these guys have girls who might not understand your role as just a friend. Also, when they’re talking about ass (other girls) that’s not always fun with your girl co-worker right there. You’ll be a friend just like all the guys…but you won’t be one of “the guys.” Sorry, ladies.

You will learn a lot from these guys (if you make friends out of them) and create great friendships that make you want to smile all the time. I learn so much about what they think, or from talking about their girlfriends that it actually calms my “relationship” anxiety. Also, maybe it’s because of the opposite sex thing, but you feel like you have people to lean on, vent to, and if my car breaks down I could probably call any of them. It totally sounds like an episode of New Girl, but really, that’s what it feels like.

You will be self conscious. Not in the way of do I look fat, and is my hair okay (well actually, that’s everyday for me) but more like “am I keeping up okay”, “I hope I don’t seem stupid”, and “I hope I’m carrying my weight.” You go from styling your hair that morning to knowing what an allen wrench is, and when you need it. You go from winging your eyeliner perfectly to grinding, and waxing ski’s, and also pushing ski’s into extremely tight bindings that take your whole body weight. Basically what I’m saying is that you feel like you’re a representation of your sex in two ways; you need to look and feel like a woman, but go to work as a man. I hate asking the guys to “pop” ski’s for me, or to show me again how to put the grinding machine back together so I don’t blow the place up. I feel like because I’m asking questions, I’m weaker.

However, when asking my manager, “does it bother you that I’m a girl working this job?” he replies, “not at all!!” while training me to do something else. These people believe in me just as much because they are the right minded kind of people. Sometimes these invisible sex lines are just that; invisible. After a few weeks, I don’t think the guys care if I come to work with messy hair, or not…and I think they prefer me asking questions instead of almost killing myself or anyone else. Sometimes it really is all in your head, and you hold yourself to higher standards than they do (which is something I’m learning that women do a lot for guys!) But be warned; there are occasional sexists assholes out there like anywhere else. Despite what’s in your pants, you can do any fucking thing that you want to do.

-haley.

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