Jeffrey Jackson


It’s a guy thing

  • May 30, 2013
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“Thanks, you guys!” “How’re you guys doing today?” “Anything I can get for you guys?” I would welcome such cheery politeness if I were, in fact, being addressed while among a group of men. But in each instance, I was with my wife. My wife could be mistaken for many things, but trust me—male is not one of them. Yet we are repeatedly addressed as if we were a single-gender couple. (Uh-oh. I think I just created a new entry in the PC dictionary.) There was a time when you’d only hear this testosterone-slanted epithet from college-aged waitresses in chain restaurants. But these days, it seems that, to every flavor of service worker, my wife and I are “guys.” Flight attendants, hotel concierges, doctors. If we were granted an audience with Queen Elizabeth, I’d fully expect her to say, “Ever so pleased to meet you guys.”

Strangely, my wife seems unfazed by it. If the situation were flipped, I would not easily adapt to a greeting of “What can I do for you gals?” I don’t know who started this, or why, but I suspect the same person is responsible for another increasingly popular phrase. Ask your next waiter to refill your breadbasket and you might be told that it’s “no problem.” Oh, goody! I wouldn’t want to cause you a problem by, oh, say, helping to underwrite your livelihood. How about a 2% tip? Would that be a problem? Because that really works for us guys.

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