10 ways to celebrate International Women's Day without going on strike
Imagine not showing up to work tomorrow and texting your boss this: "I'm informing you that in honour of International Women's Day, I will not be working today as part of the Women's March's A Day Without A Woman."
For International Women's Day on 8 March, Women's March wants you to experience a day without women in a demonstration of economic solidarity. They've even prepared a draft letter to send to your employers. Sounds crazy right? In an ideal world, your male boss would salute your efforts while your female boss would join the movement. But this is Singapore, where protests and strikes of any kind (i.e. alternative voices) aren't met with applause. Walking down Orchard road with a tasteful pussy bow hat and a slogan sporting female genitals might seem like an ideal way to spend the afternoon, but you'll probably get arrested for it.
While it's great to take a break from misogyny, patriarchy and sexism that exist in the workplace, life has other plans — and it wants you to work your butt off no matter what. But that doesn't mean you should be complacent. Whether public or private, every little gesture is a step towards expelling prejudice. Here's how you can flip the switch and "Be Bold for Change", as the theme for International Women's Day 2017 loudly and proudly exclaims.
1. Sing Meredith Brooks' Bitch at the top of your lungs
It's all about setting the mood. Start International Women's Day right by belting this at the top of your lungs, while you're getting dressed or when you're walking from the MRT to your office being the bitch, lover, child, mother, sinner, saint, hell or dream that you are.
2. Remind your mother that you don't strictly belong in the kitchen
The most realistic way to stop patriarchy? Changing the attitudes of those nearest and dearest around you by breaking the cycle. You might not succeed in being the voice of your generation just yet, but the least you can do is remind your mother that whether you love or hate to cook, your role in life isn't defined by what she's been taught growing up.
3. Drink for a cause with Deliveroo and Vinomofo
It's always 5pm in another timezone. Online wine retailer Vinomofo has teamed up with Deliveroo to bring you five bottles of wine at $12.50. When you order from 12pm to 5pm on 8 March, your well-earned money will fully go to She's The First, a charity that provides scholarships to girls in low-income countries.
4. Have an opinion on Emma Watson's boobs
Frankly, we couldn't give two hoots about Emma Watson's boobs. We're far more keen on the speech she's made at the UN or the eco-friendly makeup she's using for the press tour of Beauty and the Beast. But now that she's made headlines for gracing the cover of Vanity Fair with most of her bosom buddies, it's become quite the conversation starter. Can you be a feminist and still show your boobs? Discuss.
Maturing from Hermione to Belle in @beautyandthebeast is a true coming-of-age story for @EmmaWatson: "I couldn't care less if I won an Oscar or not if the movie didn’t say something that I felt was important for people to hear." Read the full cover story at the link in bio. Photograph by Tim Walker.
5. Take care of your pussy by leaving it alone
Nobody's entitled to grab your pussy without your permission. Apart from educating men and women that consent is key, it's time to give our lady bits some self-love without employing the help of certain battery-powered forces. If you've been conditioned to believe that pubic hair makes your genitals unattractive, here are the non-alternative facts: Pubic hair acts as a protection from friction during sex, with the apocrine sweat gland found in pubic hair excreting sweat that's full of proteins, lipids and pheromones. Those frisky little hairs also act as a barrier to keep out unwanted bacteria. #Embracethebush.
6. Take care of your armpits, too
Similar to your pubes, armpit hair reduces friction from skin grazing and shields your pits from bacteria. The hairs also facilitate the release of sex pheromones, so everybody wins. There are so many standards of beauty — why limit yourself to one? Your pits and sex life are going to thank you for it.
7. Check yourself before you wreck yourself
Are you secretly biased? Join AWARE's block party this Saturday for a training conducted by Catalyse Consulting, AWARE's corporate training arm. They've trained and consulted companies on workplace harassment issues, so you have lots to learn and discuss on what unconscious bias is and where it stems from.
8. Join a meeting of minds at General Assembly
Aziza Sheerin, regional director of General Assembly, is bringing together women in technology to showcase individuals who've taken action in their fields. The organisation aims to foster an inclusive tech community and break down barriers to tech education by bringing in speakers such as Sophie Guerin, who heads diversity and inclusion for Dell in Asia Pacific and Japan.
9. Take a walk in your slogan tee
Nobody's going to arrest you for political power dressing...right? Take a cue from fashion brands such as Prabal Gurung and Missoni by embellishing what you stand for on a plain white tee. Whether your slogan champions equal rights, equal pay or a change of mindsets, it's about time you put your crafty hands where your mouth is.
10. Forget this list
And lists in general. Who are we to tell you what to do? What we'd like to believe however, is that we're pointing you in a direction that'll open your hearts and minds and uphold the fact that women's rights are human rights — without getting you arrested.
For more stories on International Women's Day, click here.