INT. RESTAURANT — NIGHT
LOUD PATRONS clink glasses and mill about the bar and restaurant. Merriment abounds. A well-dressed man in his 20s checks his appearance in the window’s reflection, and nervously switches a small bouquet of flowers from hand to hand as he awaits the arrival of his date.
He sees her. She matches her profile picture. Gorgeous, and just his type. She sees him, crosses to the waiting area, and accepts his handshake.
Hi. I’m John. Nice to meet you. Here, these are for you.
She takes the flowers from him. Smiles. Takes a breath.
Thanks. I’m Sarah. Nice to meet you, too. Before we go any further, I need to know if you’ll support me in my career.
SOUND OF DRAGGING NEEDLE ACROSS A VINYL RECORD
FADE TO BLACK
That’s an abrupt and absurd question to ask a man on the first date. Unless he was wet nursed by a Women’s Studies professor, if a woman asks him this, it will stop any chances of a second date so fast Usain Bolt couldn’t keep up even if he were on a Lance Armstrong juicing bender.
Who would advocate asking such a question? Facebook Chief Operating Officer, Sheryl Sandberg.
She’s already famed a crusader for female empowerment in the workplace, encouraging women not to inadvertently sabotage their careers by taking a back seat.
Now Facebook chief operating officer Sheryl Sandberg, 47, has revealed her belief that women should apply her “lean in” strategy to their relationships – and always pick a “nerd or a good guy” to marry.
In an interview with the Financial Times she explained that women should ask men one key question on the first date to deduce if they’re a worthy future partner or not.
She explained that it’s essential to ask if your date is the kind of man who wants “an equal relationship” and “wants to support your career”, so that you know what kind of character they are from the outset.
“You ask and you ask early and you are not afraid of offending”, she explained. “If they’re going to be offended by the [question], you don’t want to date them anyway.”
I hate to call out a position held by such an esteemed technology and business leader, but Sandberg’s excrement advice should be ripped out of the dating books like J. Evans Pritchard’s “Understanding Poetry” in The Dead Poets Society .
I DON’T HEAR ENOUGH RIPPING!
We have a crisis on our hands, and it’s not some fat dictator on the other side of the earth threatening to nuke us into the Stone Age, nor a thug billionaire rumored to have meddled in our last presidential election. We have a crisis with accepting and managing our natures. By “nature”, I don’t mean the babbling brooks and chirping birds outside. I mean our male and female natures, and the traditional roles women and men play in strong families.
We are breeding and promoting an entire generation of angry women. Let me share a truth — and I believe I’m speaking for all my brothers – angry women make us run in the opposite direction. There is no better way to kill romance and stifle our urge to provide for the women in our lives than constant
bitterness. Frankly, Sandberg’s entire position is selfish and bitter, and ignores what marriage really means: Service to the other.
Go ahead, ladies, ask a man on your first date if he’ll support your career, and watch what happens. He’ll be so confused since 1) you’re already talking about marriage and children before dinner arrives, and yet 2) you have no idea what he wants in a relationship. Maybe he’s all for your career, maybe he isn’t. For God’s sake, give it a few weeks before popping that type of question.
This in no way means women shouldn’t have careers. Sometimes, both parents have to work. Sometimes, the woman makes more money and the father stays at home. These cases aren’t, in
themselves, bad. But we should always strive for the ideal — the traditional family structure– and modify as circumstances require.
But if you’re single and interested in getting married and raising a good family, do yourself a favor: Don’t take Sandberg’s advice. At least wait for dessert.