Stuck in a traffic jam the other day (#Austin), I noticed a sign off of the road that made me do a hard face palm.
“Boardroom,” it screamed, continuing: “SALON FOR MEN.”
FOR FUCKS SAKE PEOPLE. You’re *for real* going to lay all of your money down behind a brand that screams “THE BOARDROOM IS A PLACE FOR MEN”?!?
Oh. You ARE going to go with that idea. One that currently has 30 LOCATIONS. Wow. Well fuck, if you’re going with the ‘positions and places of power belong to men exclusively’ theme, might as well go all in, right?
Just LOOK at all of this MANLY WOOD PANELING! Check out the billiards table, that shit is claaaaaaaaaa-SSY! Sports on TVs and whiskey and beer! OH SHIT and PLUSH LEATHER CHAIRS for men to sink into, just like the ones behind their desks at their jobs at which they get paid more than their equally qualified minority co-workers!
Oh and lest we forget, Boardroom employs THE LADIEZ to serve you and your every grooming need! THIS IS EVERYTHING A MAN WANTS, RIGHT?! EVERYTHING a (white, upwardly mobile) man is accustomed to in today’s world!
“Ha ha ha!!!” the stylists shriek at the drop of a dad joke, squeezing pained laughter from their servants’ diaphragms to appease their clients’ fragile egos. “HA HA! You’re right, people ARE snowflakes nowadays! I am so amused at your racial/religious/blonde joke and am not at all uncomfortable in this place!”
THIS looks fun for these women!!!!!!!!!!!!?!
What’s the term for a ‘Breastaurant’ that’s actually a salon? ‘Boobsalon’? ‘Cutz n Buttz’?
“This is the life!” the Yelp reviews written by a vast majority of white men rave, “I love it here!” OF COURSE YOU DO. They’re basically saying, “This feels just like a meeting at the company at which I work! A bunch of men that look like me, hanging out and bullshitting, while being attended to by lower-ranking employees, mostly female!”
Okay. I’ll cut the sarcasm and ask, if we’re constantly fighting as women to be seen and thought of as equals, why would anyone clued into that fight think this concept is a good idea? Who would want to go, let alone take their sons (a LOT of people, judging by their Yelp reviews), except those who don’t mind thinking that the boardroom in a business is a place for men? Exactly. This is either the outcome of not KNOWING, or worse, not CARING.
Your dollars are a huge part of your power, people. We don’t have a ton of power as individuals, but how you spend your money is a BIG part of yours. *Think* before you spend them at a place like this. It’s the little things, like the name and concept of this salon, things that you might be thinking that “Tara’s making too big a deal about this, it’s just a salon” or “Geez, she’s taking her SJW indignance a little too far this time, just don’t spend your money there if you don’t like it”, but these are the things that I KNOW as a little girl I would have noticed and internalized. I noticed when boys talked over me and teachers didn’t stop them, I noticed when silver-haired mens’ heads snapped to stare at a young woman not much older than me, I noticed when grown men talked over and around the women I loved, smart, capable women like my mom, my aunts, my parents’ female friends, women on the news, et cetera. I noticed when places were assumed to be boys’ clubs and my mom and I were made to feel uncomfortable enough to leave soon after we entered. I noticed when I visited my dad’s company for ‘Take Your Daughter To Work Day’ that the offices were occupied only by white men and the people assisting them were all women of varying races. WE NOTICE THINGS LIKE THIS. I would have read the ‘Boardroom’ sign and normalized it, having that sink in like the truth that I would have assumed it must be. You don’t LOSE things like that. You don’t shake off what you are taught as a child, directly or indirectly, easily. Those are the building blocks that you build your self worth and understanding of the world around you upon, and damned if I’m not fighting that shit to this day, something that Hannah Gadsby’s Netflix special Nanette (a must-watch) explains in heart-wrenching detail. The people that own these salons have every right to own them and manage them however they want, and the people that work there are there to make a living and I begrudge them nothing – but I ask you to think twice about spending your dollars there and supporting the ideas they are putting out into the world.
Little girls and, dammit, women, not to mention POC, LGBTQIA folks, people with disabilities, atheists, non-Christians, and the many other minorities, notice.
We notice, and we internalize, and it becomes a part of us.
So if you KNOW about this struggle, and you CARE – avoid places like Boardroom Salon, who clearly do neither.