Sunday, February 15, 2009

Just Curious

Hello readers, thanks for stopping by. I assume you read blogs and ponder their authors the same way I do. I have concocted a cast of characters for all of you anonymous and pseudonymous poster’s and commenter’s. In my head you resemble TIAA-CREF world people, except a little edgier. Like if TIAA-CREF world had an open bar, more rocking music, and a shit ton more sarcasm. Fictitious? Of course, but fun to think about nonetheless. (I KNOW that last sentence is not complete, give me a fucking break Microsoft- your little green squiggly is not going to dictate my writing style! If I was writing for “work” I’d curb my comma addiction and attempt to use apostrophe’s’s’s’’s appropriately…great, now you are screaming the RED squiggly at me damnit). Now, where was I? Oh yes, one issue has come up that am I curious about. Some of you think I am a woman, some a man. Doesn’t really matter to me either way, but what clues are we all using to decide my gender? I find it perplexing that opinions are so varied. We all have our standard indications of gender, that list of attributes that “men write like…” and “women write like…” but I find it difficult to apply these stereotypical criteria to myself. So, without searching for obvious clues (we all do enough research at work after all) what do you think?

29 comments:

  1. Ok, I'll go first.

    I have moments of doubt, even now, but the reason, my dear Dr. No, I think you are a man is that you had an empty suit with a birthday hat on as your graphic (a very cool graphic, btw) for the posting "Me, Ronald Reagan & Bob Marley".

    Of course you could have chosen that graphic to throw us poor readers off your tail, uh, I mean trail, but I'm guessing, as a fellow "anonymous" blogger, that you can't help be just a intsy bit revealing despite your explicit intentions.

    Of course I could be projecting here.

    PS: Remember Microsoft's Paperclip icon? At least that thing has bit the dust.

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  2. Ummm, male 'cos you have a men's coat in your banner?

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  3. Since most other bloggers either state right off the bat that they're female, or allow references to their Y chromosome to abound if they're not, and you seem to do neither I assumed you are intersexed.

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  4. Well, given the background to my blog is pale pink and my real name is clearly visible under the flowers up the top, I think we can safely say I leave fairly obvious clues as to gender on my blog.

    Now you mention it, I think I have the vague impression that you are male, but can't quite say why. I think it's less to do with choice of words than choice of icons and pictures. I don't remember noticing the suit in the banner before, but it's probably registered. And that pizza-box photo two posts back, and the banner at the bottom of the page - for some reason, they just add up to the impression of being selected by a man.

    Which is really no more helpful than 'men write like/women write like', since I couldn't say exactly what contributes to that impression.

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  5. I second AA's train of thought. Never really thought about it.

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  6. I vote male, but whether that's intuition or just implicit bias I can't honestly say. Hm. It can't be stylistic, because I know at least one female blogger whose style would probably echo yours in terms of tone. I think I'm going to go ahead and say that I think you're male because I am, and I idolize you so very much.

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  7. The jacket. Definitely the jacket. Although, I would totally wear that jacket myself, but I would fill it out a bit differently than the phantom in the banner. Of course, you could be a flat chested woman with no hips and great shoulders, or trans, or just randomly using that image because it probably isn't a portrait of yourself anyway. In any case, the jacket projected to me an image of "male."

    Also, "Dr. No" was a dude in the movie.

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  8. Because your apple on the top banner is getting wrinkled. A woman would have thrown it out already but a man would think it was still edible for another few weeks. Sorry, but that's true.

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  9. Goldeneye (with Pierce and what my hubby says is a wimpy car) is on tv now, and yes, Dr. No: a villain in an early James Bond movie (Man with the Golden Gun?).

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  10. The snarky tone on the blog isn't gender specific, now that I think about it, so it must be the jacket.

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  11. I intially assumed you were a woman because it seems like almost every Pseud blog about science is written by a woman, but I never really thought about it. If forced to say after reading for a bit, I would go with male, but I'm not sure it matters.

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  12. Oh, I'd say male. There's a snarky confidence, bordering on arrogance in your posts (which I adore, BTW) that reeks of DILLIGAF. Personally I don't know any women who wouldn't have a softening post somewhere to counterbalance.

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  13. We ALL agree that:
    1. I am snarky
    2. My sex/gender does not matter

    We disagree in that I thought there were some strong man/woman opinions...but a consensus is clearly forming (based on the sartorial to the freshness of produce).

    (As for that stupid Microsoft paper clip icon, yes I remember...it is burned into my brain, I hated that fucking thing)

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  14. This is something I was wondering.

    I initially assumed you were a man because 1) your writing style is male and 2) most professors are male, so (barring significant 'blog-writing gender discrepancies) that would be more likely.

    However, then I read your post about the different types of tenure reviewers and noticed the part about a "lady name." This made me consider that you might be female. I noticed that you never mentioned anything that would give away your gender. I'm not sure why a man would try to not disclose that he's a man, since this is usually the default assumption on the internet anyway. But I do know why a woman would try to not disclose that she's a woman--so that she can take advantage of the anonymity of the internet and be judged by the "male" standard of posting/writing (how intelligent and witty are you?) not the "female" standard (how much do you flirt with the readers? How many cute pictures of yourself do you post?) I have been pulling this trick since I was fourteen so I can imagine you as a kindred spirit.

    Anyway, I guess the answer is that I don't really know and try not to imagine you either way.

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  15. Apparently I am alone in thinking that you're a woman in RL. It seemed that you moved among a circle of mostly (self-identified) women bloggers. I always already read your posts with that assumption, so I didn't really look for additional "gender cues" in the text.

    I ignored the tweed jacket in the banner and, while there is the Bond villain, I assumed the pseudonym had more to do with your consistent answer to student complaints.

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  16. I really have no idea. I could go either way from the beginning. But I like the picture you draw of the bloggy crowd.

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  17. I just started reading you, so I have no idea, but I'm also a pseudonymous blogger with no declared gender, and people make assumptions about me, too.

    The main problem is our language, I think, which makes discussing someone in a non-gendered way rather more complicated. Even if our readers don't really think about our gender most of the time, when the time comes to write about us, they have to commit, or think really hard about how to write around the question.

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  18. Female bloggers are meant to post cute pictures of themselves to up their status? Damn, so that's what I've been doing wrong. I've only ever posted cute pictures of my beagles, gingerbread men and mediaeval manuscripts. Maybe I don't look so female after all.

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  19. Can "Hilarious" be a gender? Because that's how I think of you.

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  20. I mean, if TIAA-Cref People But Edgier can be a category... ;)

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  21. I assumed you were a woman... funny, that I never thought otherwise. Something about the 'damnit'--reminded me of my grandmother. Total projection.

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  22. Wow. The response has been overwhelming and I find myself at a loss for words. I am both flattered and undergoing some sort of blogger identity crisis!

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  23. So... are you going to leave us in suspense?

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  24. I think you're a dudette. I can barely squeak out a lipstick smudge on the apple, the shoe print looks like pink crocs, and the jacket is nicely ironed. Dudette.
    But it doesn't matter - you crack me up.

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  25. OK Anonymous, I need to clarify something. I would never, EVER, wear crocs. I can only think of two situations where croc-wearing is appropriate:

    1.You have a job that requires you to be on your feet all day. If such individuals find crocs comfortable, then OK (they can duct tape pillows to their feet and it would be OK, I don’t want anyone who is cooking my food, tending to my medical needs, or chasing children around all day to be in a crappy mood because their feet hurt).

    2. You are gardening, in MUD.

    3. I lied, there is a third option. Your house burns down WHILE you are working at a job requiring you to be on your feet all day or while you are gardening, in MUD. (In which case, call me immediately and I will get you some other shoes)

    If anyone reading this happens to be wearing crocs right now, ask yourself these questions: Am I standing? (if not, take them OFF right now!) Am I gardening, in MUD? (if not, take them OFF right now! If yes, what the hell are you doing reading this?) Did my house burn down? (if not, take them OFF right now! If yes, go ahead, call me. I am here for you).

    I am sure I have just offended many a croc wearer. Look, I’m sorry. I still like you. I don’t like your shoes, but I like you.

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  26. This blog is funny. I hope you are a man so I can have a secret crush on you, and anyway Dr. No is a man's name. I don't believe people don't care or think about it. Liars! Anyway if you are a woman it would ruin everything.

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  27. Guy type person, from your training video.

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