The Critical Eye

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Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Lingerie in Saudi Arabia

I just read that women in Saudi Arabia have decided to boycott lingerie shops. One would immediately think that this was related to some religious issue. I must warn my usual readers, that we are going where no man has gone before, into the ladies department. One small step for me, a giant step for you. I must also warn you that some of you will be moving to Saudi Arabia.

Here is the declaration; "Only men can work as lingerie salesmen in Saudi Arabia." There it is, out in the open. Let's get out of the way of the mass migration. Men everywhere are packing their bags or getting ready to line up at the Saudi Arabian embassy. Stop, before you reach for your phone,or line up for a work visa; there's a catch. There is currently a huge uproar in Saudi Arabia, women are flabbergasted and embarrassed at being forced to endure this shameful experience. On my behalf I wonder how long this has been going on, and why I didn't know about it sooner.

Okay men; ever wanted to get a job at Victoria's Secret? No? Ever thought about it? All the married guys are backing away slowly. Okay if you were single and had the resolve, would you apply? I don't think there's a man's man alive who is completely comfortable in this environment, no matter how much you like lingerie (I need to be careful here). So how does this happen in a country that has not given women equal rights? Furthermore, barely allows them to show any skin in public. Lingerie being sold by men?

I know that in America there would be no discriminating against any male who applied for a job at an intimate apparel store. Yeah, right! I can imagine telling all my boys at the pool hall about how I made my quota in brassiere sales over the weekend. "Hey Bernard, have you seen the latest design in thongs? The D-cup straps are made quite hardy!" No, I don't see it. How these men have survived in a macho driven culture like Saudi Arabia is beyond me. This in a country that won't allow women to drive in public? Someone buy me a drink.

I am trying hard not to make this a religious discourse. However, I am quite confused and unable to understand the hypocrisy. So the next time you're in Victoria's Secret, feeling awkward about escorting the wife, get really involved in the process, it might come in handy in the future.

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