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Thursday, August 14, 2008

I'm not hatin', I'm just sayin'...

Dictionary.com defines chivalry as "the sum of the ideal qualifications of a knight, including courtesy, generosity, valor, and dexterity in arms."

I've never wanted a knight in shining armor. Let's be real--a man can't live up to that title. But I would like a man who exudes qualities that might qualify him for knighthood. I'm beginning to wonder if I'll ever find someone like this.

Case in point: I lost a hubcap on the Cubmobile this weekend. My car is notorious for losing the little buggers, so I keep an extra stash of hubcaps in my trunk for such a time as this (wow, I am a nerd). I find that when my car doesn't have a hubcap, it looks ghetto. Sue me for not wanting to drive a ghetto car.

Anyway, Monday afternoon after work, I pull into my grassy parking spot in front of our house. I pop open my trunk and grab my last hubcap (note to self: replenish stash) and walk over to my front wheel to pop it on. About that time, a big burly guy comes riding up on a scooter onto my front sidewalk. I recognize him as one of my roommates friends, and he tells me that he's waiting on her to get home. All the while, I'm struggling to get this damn hubcap snapped into place. I'm crouched over in work clothes and heels and I have brake dust and tar smeared up to my elbows. And despite all of my pushing, re-positioning and frustrating effort, the hubcap will not go on my wheel.

In the meantime, lard butt boy plopped himself down in the adirondack chair on my front porch, twittering away on his little Blackberry. I'm aware of this, and I shoot dirty glances over my shoulder often as I struggle with the hubcap. Bastard avoids eye contact with me. After about ten minutes of this, I give up, throw the hubcap back into my trunk, and walk away from my ghetto car.

Not once did he ask if he could help, or even ask what I was doing. It was very obvious that he had no intention of getting his lily white hands dirty. I was disgusted with him.

The incident brought to mind another instance of non-chivalry my roommates and I experienced recently. Back when we first moved into the house, Amy bought a wooden bookshelf from Target that required assembly. After Amy, Emily and I tore open the box, we realized that among the hundreds of bolts and screws, there lie a set of directions that might as well have been heiroglyphics.

The three of us struggled with the cumbersome shelf for over an hour when we called for back-up. I won't name names, but we dialed no less than five guys looking for help. We were denied no less than five times. One guy almost conceded after we tried to bribe him with food, but after he started making demands, we told him to forget it. Mind you, these were all single guys. No wonder....

Three hours later, after blood, sweat, tears (and cursing), we finally completed the shelf.

Now, I won't say that every guy I know is void of chivalry. My dad is one of the most gentlemanly men I know, and is always willing to help someone. I work with a few men that also exude chivalrous qualities. And I know a handful of twentysomething guys that aim for chivalry--two of them helped me move into my house at 7 a.m. on a cold Saturday morning in February.

What's disturbing to me is that I only know a few men that I would label as modern day "knights." Pickings are slim, my friends.

Hear me say this: I am a 21st century woman who still needs and wants a man willing to practice chivalry--and I will settle for nothing less.

Update 3:43 p.m.: A co-worker just walked into my office with a really heavy box. He saw my name on it at our mail kiosk and brought it to me---out of the goodness of his heart. Chivalry isn't dead afterall...

6 Comments:

Anonymous Katie G said...

Amen, amen, and amen sister. You hit the nail on the head...chivalry is dead! And when I get into a situation like that when a guy won't step up to help, I like to give him a brief lecture on chivalry. Apparently all the knights are in hiding in a secret cult together. We must find the cult!

9:20 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good to have you back.

-E-

9:41 PM

 
Anonymous natalie said...

Wow, what a jerk. Chalk on up for the losers club. They just got a new member.

12:06 PM

 
Blogger Amanda Vilendrer said...

UGH... I am not surprised. We live in a generation where most guys don't know How to do anything practical like fix cars or do simple home repairs. The metro dude was probably avoiding eye contact with you b/c he was embarassed that he had now idea how to put on a hubcap, as well he should be.

6:44 PM

 
Blogger emmysue said...

I once interviewed a girl who put "chivalrous" on her resume. Intrigued at her selecting a fairly masculine word, I asked her why she chose it. "I dunno...I guess I just thought it sounded good." Needless to say, I did NOT hire her. (This really doesn't have a lot to do with your blog...it just reminded me of that story. I chuckle every time I think about it.)

PS - come home...

9:41 PM

 
Blogger thesciencegirl said...

You know the post I wrote about my list last week? "Chivalrous" was on it; what once used to be a given is now a hot commodity among our male peers. It's sad. I do have several male friends who are good about holding doors and stuff, but most of them think nothing of letting me walk home alone after midnight. And people on buses so often stay seated while pregnant or elderly passengers stand. I have noticed though that men of my parents' generation do tend to be more chivalrous, and will often stand back to let me on the bus first, etc.

12:50 PM

 

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