Couple of updates & some gym-rage

A gym-manners question:

If a man says that one’s press ups are “good for a woman”, is it acceptable to compliment him on being “good for an old bloke”?

Afterall, being female and being older are both likely to make press ups less good and are both protected characteristics. I really can’t see the difference, but I didn’t say it anyway. I can’t help but think he wouldn’t have been flattered (or got my point).

It’s been a while since I’ve updated my Day Zero spreadsheet as I’ve been quite busy with one thing and another. Having checked briefly,  I’ve managed to tick off a couple of boxes though which is nice.

1) STEM event,

I’m a “STEM ambassador” which basically means I’ve joined a network of Scientists and Engineers helping to promote careers in these areas to school and college age children. In the past I’ve just attended a couple of fairs which were interesting but not very scary so I decided as a day zero challenge I’d do something that really involved getting outside of my comfort zone. Last week I took part in a “speed networking” event at a local school which meant that I sat at a desk with some posters from my project and chatted to groups of teenage boys about my job. I was quite nervous as I remember how mean some of the kids were and it was quite likely I’d go blank, splutter and feel incompetent, but I really didn’t! Now that I no longer feel any pressure to appear ‘cool’ in front of the kids, I found it really easy to talk about work and represent Engineering as a professional. I hadn’t actually realised it was a boys’ school when I signed up, but I actually think it might be even more important as maybe it helped some of the boys at least to see that women can do maths and science too!

2) 10 intelligent books

I read the man-booker winning “The sense of an Ending” by Julian Barnes. I’m not sure what to make of this. I had to google it at the end which is a good sign I think as it leaves you wondering, but I’m not sure whether it made me think or whether I’d have preferred to find an ‘answer’ at the end. I don’t think I’m really cut out for prize winning literature, but this was really easy to read and I think I at least for a feeling for some of the themes. I would recommend it, but I’m still processing I think!


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