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June 06, 2002

I had to fly on one of those little jets that necessitates venturing onto the tarmac, rather than waltzing down a ramp connected directly to the jet's door. Upon arriving in Atlanta's crappy little airport, there was no elevator in sight, so everyone had to file up a narrow set of stairs encased by dirty metal siding. We were moving at a glacial pace, and I soon realized why. A few people ahead of me, at the front of the line, was an old woman who didn't have the strength to carry her rolling bag. She was using two hands to pull it up a step, then taking one step herself. Because of the contortions required to do this, the woman a little behind and beside her couldn't go past. Directly between me and the old woman were two men, both quietly huffing at the delay. One carried a sissy European man-purse, the other had nothing in either hand. Nothing.

So, I shouldered my computer bag, used my other bag to press past the two sorry excuses for men in front of me, and with my free hand picked up the old woman's bag. She was exceedingly thankful, almost to the point of tears, it seemed. In my alternate universe, once I got her bag to the top of the stairs, I kicked the guy behind us in the throat, causing him to careen with lethal velocity into the man behind him. The rest of the passengers cheered me, and airport security gave me a free ride to my connecting gate on that little golf cart with the annoying horn, letting me honk it at will as we sped past the less heroic travelers.

In reality, I gave them both a disgusted look and went on my way. I wish now I had confronted them. Shame on any man who doesn't help an old woman with her bags, or let pregnant women go to the front of a line, or hold open doors for ladies. Males who don't do these things deserve to have their manhoods revoked, permanently, by means of a small guillotine.

A very small guillotine, I suspect.

Posted by Woodlief on June 06, 2002 at 07:22 AM


Mr. Woodlief, I salute you. There's nothing more to say.

Posted by: Roy Jacobsen at June 6, 2002 8:57 AM

No wonder you won "Sexiest Blogger" - it's not just the huge pectoral muscles, but the attitude. I hope those two "men" will look back on their sorry performance and be humbled (yeah right, but we can hope).

Posted by: MarcV at June 6, 2002 8:58 AM

Anyone carrying a "European purse" should be kicked in the throat anyway. No matter what.

Posted by: Alice at June 6, 2002 9:19 AM

Ohhhhhh...Tony! I'm speechless with admiration. That was a wonderful thing to do but, just as you said, also the only right thing to do. I love the "man-purse" reference too. I wish you would have confronted them, but I suspect you would have had a much different story then because men like that usually are also incapable of seeing their faults and quick to get ugly.

I personally think even a small guillotine would be unnecessary - a set of someone's confiscated nail clippers should do the job with room to spare.

Posted by: susanna at June 6, 2002 9:23 AM

I knew you were a gentleman. Chivalry is not dead, and you just confimred it. In my alternate reality I would've shoved the man-purse down his throat.
Kudos, sir, kudos.

Posted by: annessa at June 6, 2002 9:32 AM

A small correction to Marc: I won the "Sexiest Man on the Internet" contest. I was, for reasons that still elude me, excluded from the "Sexiest Male Blogger" contest.

Not that I'm bitter.

Posted by: Tony at June 6, 2002 9:37 AM

We do seem to be lacking in elementary courtesy these days, but I don't think it should be a male-female thing. If I'd been in your place I'd have done exactly the same thing (including the look of disgust).

Furthermore, I'd have done the same thing if it had been a man struggling to get the bag up the stairs (though I'd have probably added a face saving comment -- for him -- about how the wheels get caught on stairs).

Posted by: Kat at June 6, 2002 2:46 PM

Good job Tony. I think, after helping the older lady, you should have kicked the 2 sissies, especially the one with the effiminate "man purse".
I was at the U-M Hospital's cancer center the other day, back for a chheckup, when I saw that there was a guy whose wheelchair was stuck in the elevator, and the poor fellow wasnt able to get out. There are 4 elevators there, and people were going in and out of the other 3, but not one person, male or female or transgendered, stopped to help. I got out of the golfcart I was riding in, and was going towards the elevator to help, when I saw a pair of black teens, complete with baggy pants and all, who pushed through the throng of people and helped the guy with the stuck wheelchair.
I was astounded to realise that maybe 50 people, at least, had gone past the guy whose wheelchair was stuck, yet not one helped him, till the 2 teenagers came by and gave him a hand.

Posted by: sid at June 6, 2002 8:17 PM

Mr.Woodlief,of course you acted properly,after all,you're well schooled.

Posted by: michael k at June 6, 2002 10:54 PM

The sad part is, there are femiNazis (oops, I mean feminists, really I do) who would get angry at you for that attitude. Even though you said you would have helped a man, too. Pathetic, huh?

Oh, and the "holding the door" thing woulget them foaming at the mouth. Luckily, I live in an area of the world where such people usually move away rather than try to convert the other 99.99% of the society.

Posted by: Deoxy at July 15, 2002 5:23 PM

I own a man bag- I'm not effeminate!

Posted by: Man Bag Boy at May 22, 2003 12:59 AM