LOL’ing at cissexist loopholes

Sometimes I amuse myself with pedantry rather than being annoyed at cissexism.

In this case, I finally actually sat down and read through my collective bargaining agreement at work. It is pretty dry, standard stuff for the most part. But there is some unnecessary gendered language I could potentially exploit some day re: pregnancy and parental leave.

Weirdly it’s not the pregnancy part, which is actually gender neutral:

Upon at least two (2) weeks written notice… a pregnant employee who has completed thirteen (13) weeks employment will be granted pregnancy leave without pay in accordance with the Ontario Employment Standards Act.

For some reason, though, they throw in an unnecessary “female” into the parental leave part:

The Parental Leave for a female employee who has taken Pregnancy Leave must commence immediately following the expiration of her Pregnancy Leave. For all other employees, Parental Leave must begin no more than thirty-five (35) weeks after:
i) the birth of the child, or,
ii) the child comes into the care and custody of the parent.

Apparently non-female employees taking pregnancy leave have more flexibility around when they take their parental leave. Rank discrimination against women, I tell you!

How I feel about my genderqueer identity… and everything else, really.

[Just because I happened to be having an interesting correspondence (on OKCupid, of all places!) that helped me to solidify things into a useful sound-bite.]

Regarding my genderqueer identity: “It’s both utterly silly, and also very politically and personally meaningful. Kind of like love, and chosen family, and… probably all of the things in the world that are most important to me, really.”

Love and Silliness

There’s this story I’ve been carrying around for a very long time. It’s from early on in my relationship with my partner. And I’ve long yearned to share it with someone, anyone really, but I always felt that I should really share it with him first.

Not because it’s important; it’s really not. It’s practically an inconsequential detail. But it’s something he didn’t know about our relationship.

You see, we’d been together for about a month. Not long at all, really. But ours was a relationship that formed quickly and touched us both deeply almost immediately. Our first date lasted, oh, about 36 hours? I only left because I really did have to make it to class the next day. And we saw each other almost every day after that.

About a month into this whirlwind, as I was floating back into the reality from a post-coital bliss, I looked straight at him and, smiling, said, “Hello, you.”

And he looked right back at me and said, “I love you, too.”

Neither of us was really ready for that (though I was very much in love him already, too,) so we wordlessly shelved the sentiment, and it didn’t come up again until I actually got to a place where I was ready to say the words, myself. (I did it through email, because that is my tried and true method of sharing that kind of thing. It works for me. Don’t judge.)

I never knew whether he knew that he was (technically) the first one who’d said “I love you,” or if he simply thought that we’d exchanged the sentiment on that day. And there was never a moment in which it made sense to bring it up, and since I didn’t know how he would react, and it wasn’t exactly important anyway, I held this story silently in my heart while years passed by.

It became more and more difficult to imagine a moment that would be the perfect set-up for me to tell him. I knew I wanted to share this with him, but I never really knew how.

Until yesterday, when I said to him, “I love you,” (as I now do several times a day.)

And he looked back at me, and said, “Hello!”

I was silent for a moment, and then I burst out laughing, so hard that when I was finished I had no choice but to explain to him what was so damn funny.

So I did, and then we laughed together about it, because we’re even now.

It’s all good.