One of the questions I've been asked most frequently about my new job is not a) is the work interesting? or b) what sorts of things are you asked to do? or even c) is the pay good? No, it seems that what most people are interested in is how I am coping in a building full of men. That is what they want to know. "It must be strange working with all those men". Well, given that my last job was totally women only (until jd showed up to save the day - wooo!) I guess it's a little strange to be one of the only women on the engineering floor. So that question isn't quite as bad as "wow, aren't you uncomfortable working with all those men around?" Um...frankly, no. And while I think it's a bizarre question in a way, I started wondering why someone would even think to raise that topic, and I've come to the conclusion that I like men and I feel comfortable in their presence...always have always will. So why? Why is it that a building full of engineers doesn't scare me like it does some of the women who've been asking me about my comfort level. I think there are some obvious reasons - and anyone who's worked in a library or other area where women dominate can relate - men give you the straight goods, just the facts, let's get it out in the open and deal with it so we can move on. Women [and this is not all women of course, I am speaking only for myself from my own experiences] tend to be more manipulative, they can be catty and view other women as their competition. Men don't seem to have the hidden agenda that women do - you know, those women who want to know where you bought your shoes so they can mock you for either paying far too much for them or for being cheap because you didn't pay very much for them at all. In a lot of workplaces where the women outnumber, you just can't win.
So I'm happy in my new surroundings for those reasons, but there is also something else which I've just recently started to understand about myself. Part of my comfort can be attributed to me always having felt like one of the guys. It never occurs to me that I could be anything more than that. And see, I think this is where some of my friends were going when they asked wasn't I uncomfortable with all the men. If you feel like the guys might be checking you out, I can understand how you might feel outnumbered. But, as that never occurs to me lol, I'm good. And this doesn't, of course, mean that I think I'm completely UNattractive, but what I do think is that for the most part the guys at work will accept me and just treat me like one of them. No hidden agenda, nothing at all like that. So there you go. Definitely not a sex symbol. Suits me fine. :)