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Don't Call Me a Lady

Call me Brash.  Call me Bossy.  Hell, call me the other B word.  Just don’t call me a Lady.  I’m a bit old school when it comes to the “L” word.  In my mind, those four letters are a gilded cage, a choke collar fastened to the twin chains of “modesty” and “demureness,” ones meant to keep women in line.  And they still make me flinch.
Ladies please.
I am old enough to have been brought up in a family that schooled me (however unsuccessfully) in all things “lady”; it was part of the era. Ladies sat quietly, legs crossed; nibbled their food; kept themselves tidy and presentable; were gracefully, elegant, thin, beautiful; spoke softly with neither command, nor authority and knowledge. But I was doomed to disappoint:  no beauty; my knees were always scuffed, my elbows rough and dry, my shoulders and feet too big, my hair full of knots. And I said what was on my mind.  I wanted to rub up against things, but lived under an umbrella of expectation:  Why wasn’t I more refined?  More girly?  A La…

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