Get-togethers are never boring; you are piquantly involved to show a pestering allegiance to the one sitting right beside you, and the grumped silence at the other end too adds to the false impression of listening. The awkward sepulchral bites in the mouth are a distraction if the hob nob is somewhat a piffle-paffle. The interesting tones, though linger on to evacuate the ephemeral emptiness putting on a charade of happiness. At this moment, the squall of the messy ringtone does no good; subtly cut and cornered to pursue the fantastical aplomb of ‘wish life was this-that’—the malignant slugfest continues till the vendettas have been crucified to hang at the altar.  

One such dining; feisty laughter, likable minds—hope so! And me tinkling the clasped spoon violating the rules of silence, to deluge the uncontrollable hunger in the cockpit of the stomach slumber. What to talk? I ungratefully reprimand my mind as can’t indulge in the same clap trap of the old rickety past and the ornamented present. I dissenter what I feel could form a likeable discussion.

“You know what I am reading now days? It’s a new book on patriarchy—‘The Patriarchs: How men came to rule’” Consequently I harrumph to the acid lodged in the opening of the esophagus. 

“So, basically it’s how men came to rule us”, a serrated judgment storms from the lady sitting across me.

“Interesting”, says the one gliding back and forth to get the attention of the waiter. 

The last woman in the group, not me (I call myself third) barges in, “see, this is what men have been doing for ages.”

I give a sonorous remark in the end, “Patriarchy lives on fantasies, I guess”

In the midst of our shillyshally vocals, we literally forget our ‘men’—they rule us too; I mean the ubiquitous ‘husbands’, sitting along the stock pile community of the beers’ and vodkas’. One of the husbands’, not all mine, but of the second lady in our gossip circle, intrudes with a self-deprecating annoyance, fingers coerced to the sagging jawline, “isn’t Feminism bad?”

He looks at me disapprovingly as if I am the harbinger of the invidious claims the rest of the ladies are pouring in. “It’s bad, right!” he flaunts the same pernickety tone.

I did not know what to say? All hell broke loose. On hearing this, why did not the clouds break their peripatetic travels or the ‘Sun-Moon’ rising be barred by a rivuleting apocalypse and the migrating stars stymied in their scalar.

What was he trying to say?

Did he really understand Feminism?

Men usually find the entire ‘empowerment debate’ factious. I understand their psyche but an invidious claim that ‘Feminism could be bad’ incarcerated my soul in adilemma of how fixated human mind is. It all resounded like a falling of leaves in a storm. Why? On what pretext? What made him think like that? An intuition or did he have the evidence to prove his theology?

I felt like fisting a rabbit punch but I refrained. He finally resorted to a raison d’etre, “why you women can’t be happy with all you have; a loving husband, children, family and money? Men are there to protect women and look after them. This is how culturally we have been systemized and let’s accept and be happy about it. Why bell the cat? Let the caravan pass by” 

So, this is what makes the handle twist and this is why Feminism is bad; a plague insinuating ‘cultural shocks’ and rebarbative opinions. But, I think again if we women have projected ‘Feminism’ as a war against men or the battle is only about empowerment and righteousness? It’s high time we need to correct the corrigendum!

What I think!

Feminism is a faith in the dexterity of emotions that see an uprising from debris humiliation, incarcerated shudder and epithetic monstrosities. But, it is often seen as revulsion when it is not. It is frequently portrayed as ‘hysterical’ when it is not. Many times, it is seen as a hair-raising staccato to stop the cynical schismatic by the patriarchy when it is just not that. It is neither about fighting ‘men’ swan off lying in the moist trepidation of their egregious impulses.

It is just about working on your ‘survival instincts’ but still considered ‘bad’. Is it asking for too much; to keep the feet rested coherently on the shakable ground, to allow fingers curveting the reprehensible emotions and the skin responding favorably to life’s exigencies piercing the right to be bedraggled at times. Isn’t all this a man’s palliative synchronicity? So, when women follow prescriptive fondness to life, why it is called ‘proscriptive feminism’? Yes, indeed! The fault does not lie in Feminism—it’s just a term. It lies in the recondite eyes cloning a vision of rectitude; aggrandizing a look a woman does not deserve infusing a sophistry to her natural inclinations.

Where did all this began? I don’t know and neither want to know. Exercising control over ‘man’s ambitions’ makes me morally unappetizing when I am too born from the same earthily relevance. I actually wanted to convey all this to the soloist sitting right next to me for his unclaimed priggishness of making a Shepard’s Pie; feminism on top with layers of bullish expectations lying underneath—The camaraderie so fits well, live by it, swear by it but as long as men are alive, it would be judged as a begrudge.

The epic has more to offer. My ‘humble husband’ carries the same pinched nerve—how could I forget that? He strikes with the perfect convincing voice, “I have ordered a lasagna for you, you like it, isn’t it? I will share with you.” I want to object, really! Scream too and gladly swim some fisticuffs right across his nose. Of all the dishes—‘lasagna’, for god’s sake with the amount of cheese it entails, it would wreak havoc with my liver having no gall bladder.

I push forward my case even if it feels like ‘Feminism is bad’.

“Can we order something else which does not have cheese?” My breath a little long! But he masters his words comfortingly, “it’s delicious and a small portion of cheese once in a blue moon would do no harm.”

What? Why?—I rock my limbs imperceptibly. If feminism is bad then let it be, I grunt to myself. I order a sandwich leaving my husband in the tyranny of the inclusive survival. I don’t know how men came to rule but definitely Feminism is a ‘block and tackle’ to transport women where they truly belong.

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