Tuesday, February 17, 2009

The gender gap

Today I was surprised that a columnist in my university's student newspaper addressed the topic of the so called "wage gap" between the genders. He did a fine job of covering the basics of the issue:
  • Differences in wages between men and women are due to lifestyle decisions such as preferred working hours, having children, and work conditions such as required travel and hazards.
  • Over the past 40 years wages for women, particularly black women, have gone up faster than other demographics.
  • If women really make less for the same work, why would an employer hire men at all?
I am expecting there will be at least one angry letter to the editor on the subject tomorrow...we'll see.

For more information about the wage gap see this post by Elusive Wapiti.


Elusive Wapiti said...

Thanks for the link. We'll see if said intrepid fellow still has a job come friday.

Subject change: weren't you re-entering the dating pool? If so, how'd that go?

MarkyMark said...

EW echoed my sentiments! Yeah, that poor SOB (i.e. the guy who told the truth) will be LUCKY to have a job come Friday...

Learner said...

You're welcome EW. No letters to the editor yet today.

Regarding my return to the the dating pool, I think it may have been a bit premature :( After I went on that one date I mentioned in my "Chemistry" post a few weeks ago where I trembled like a schoolgirl I thought that was probably a good sign I am, unfortunately, not quite ready yet. After all, what guy wants his date to shake like a leaf?

What I need to do to "get ready" and how I am going to know I am ready, now that I am not sure of. It doesn't seem fair to me for me to "practice" on other men (as one of my friends suggested!) to see if I am ready. I have been praying and talking to a counseling pastor at my church about it, and trying to be open to how God leads me.

Learner said...

Hi MarkyMark,

I will be curious to see what happens.

bri said...

Practice is fair as long as they know it is practice. I say this as a single Christian guy.

As long as the boundaries are clear, you're okay.

Here's the thing about dating. You have to go on a lot of informal casual dates. This builds up your confidence and you get over the nerves.

Too often, Christians are all wound up and get kind of weird about life.

For example, while growing up, I never did drugs or knew anyone who did. When I started waiting tables, I worked with people who used all the time, and were often high at work.

At first, I was very unnerved by it, and acted like a typical repressed Christian do-gooder.

I got over it. After a while, I was completely at east knowing that half the staff were potheads. That did NOT mean that I did drugs. But I understood these people for what they were, and was able to function IN the world without being PART of the world.

Lots of Christians might line up to criticize the fact that I didn't quit, or that I didn't witness to them or whatever. I reject their views.

This world is full of sin, and if we attempt to hide from it, we will all need to live in our basements.

To be fair and honest, these potheads were friendlier, more accepting, and less catty and judgmental than most Christians I have known.

Go figure. And I learned a lot about life from them, even though I never followed their example.

My advice, for what it is worth, is to be bold, don't fear people, don't fear the devil or the evil in this world. If you act with Godly wisdom and with propriety, you'll be okay.

Learner said...


Thank you for the comment and your thoughts and advice about "practice".

I agree with you that there are things to be learned from unbelievers and that believers don't need to avoid them or dismiss everything they say. One of my unbelieving friends here is one of the most giving and service to others oriented person I have ever met.

The minimal nervousness I generally feel on first dates may be due to the fact that I have not dated an extensive amount. However, considering that I am 42 years old, I don't know that that is something that will change (I get a bit nervous the first time I teach a new class too), and it doesn't usually cause me a problem. The significant nervousness I felt on my recent date was likely due to a bad dating experience last year. Maybe "practice" would help me be less nervous with that, I don't know. I spent the day with a male friend, who isn't interested in me romantically speaking, in November without being so excessively nervous. So, I don't know if "practice" with a man who is more of a friend would help or not. The idea of approaching a man who is not a friend and telling him that I want to "practice" doesn't sit well with me because it seems to me that he would want to know why. Even though I have written some bit about what happened here on my blog, this is pretty anonymous. The thought of telling a man who is not my friend about it in an non-anonymous manner is not something I want to do. A bit of a catch-22 for me I suppose.

bri said...

I wasn't suggesting that you announce your intent to 'practice' up front. What I mean is that you should accept any invitation for a date, and go out and just be casual.

Everything is only as big a deal as you make it.

Personally, I LOVE blind dates. Know why?

Because if you assume that a blind date pretty much starts out as a disaster, it can only get better.

We used to live in a world where a tender heart had a chance of making it through life unscathed. That is not the modern reality. In truth, the scars of bad dates heal, and they put some toughness in the soul, an ability to handle the ups and downs of a serious relationship.

The battle-hardened unbelievers that I worked with in the food service industry seemed more tough and stable that the ultra-protected people from the church I used to attend.

Serious real-world Christians need this toughness. Paul was tough. Peter was tough. I have been through a lot of what you are feeling. It gets better.

I would not be willing to go back in time and undo these scars, much as they hurt at the time. On the other side of this pain is the ability to be free from people hurting you.

Learner said...


I have struggled with how to reply to your comment. I believe that you are offering me kindly meant advice, so I thank you for that.

But, I am guessing you did not read my post where I vaguely discussed my bad experience which was linked in my "Chemistry" post that I referred to here? Or maybe you did, but I was so vague that I did not get across that what happened was not a normal bad date. To be a bit more clear, the man I was dating physically injured me in a manner that would be described as sexual battery in most states.

So, I am having difficulty understanding how what you said applies to my experience. If when you wrote your previous comment you were able to grasp what happened through my vague inferences could clarify for me?

bri said...

That clarifies it more. I had read into it that you had had a bad experience due to a guy who was callous, or rude, or very hurtful.

In no way was I suggesting that something like you are describing should be waved away. I was talking about the normal pains that are part of the usual train wreck that is the world of modern dating. Like my dating life, for instance. Lots of bent metal there.

I guess your inference was subtle enough that I didn't pick up what you meant.

Sorry that you had to have that kind of thing happen. I don't understand the nature of a guy who can act in that way.

Learner said...


Thank you. I thought that may have been what happened because I am pretty vague most of the time when I refer to it. Likely you are not the only person who didn't catch my vague inferences.

Ame said...

"We used to live in a world where a tender heart had a chance of making it through life unscathed. That is not the modern reality."

what a sad truth

Learner said...

Amen Ame