Updated: Apr 3, 2019
“I was warned that the men might be annoying“, Madison Marriage, on the Presidents Club Charity Dinner.
Would YOU take this job …..
Wanted 130 women as hostesses for an all male charity dinner.
Must have good figure, be tall and slim.
Uniform not provided but candidates, should bring own black sexy shoes and wear equally alluring underwear.
Oh … and by the way, you’ll be required to sign the Presidents Club NDA.
Only the brave hearted need apply.
Within the certain male bastions I’m certain that this has been going on for years, you’ve only got to go back to the Profumo Affair, or simply google the numerous rumours that abound of infidelity and sexual peccadillos in certain demographics.
Even in my own less high flown circle, I’ve had friends that were members of all male clubs, rugby for instance, and we all knew “what goes on tour, STAYS on tour” and, in those days, mostly it did. No social media, no iPhones coupled with a no “show and tell” mentality.
Today however it’s a different world.
Today we see ‘gaggles’ of women drunk on the street during ‘hen night’ season, so drunk, in fact, that they sometimes cannot stand up. And then behaviours that might be appropriate by men in a strip club are often played out on the same streets.
Women used to behave with more modesty, men used to be more chivalrous, indeed, I recall a story of my great grandfather, who would NEVER swear, who would always be totally respectful or women but, when having to take the washing off the line when the heavens opened, was overheard swearing and cursing with such language the like of which my mother had never heard before.
So is it the ability to communicate as quickly and rapidly, the prevalence of social media, of camera phones that are bringing things such as the Presidents Club Charity Dinner to the fore. Is it outing of the Harvey Weinstein’s and the Kevin Spacey’s of this world. Attitudes ARE changing as to what is acceptable and what is not and we now, rightly, question such behaviours, but let’s not just judge others, let’s look ourselves too.
Get a group of people together and the more negative aspects of behaviours are often accentuated. During the British riots of 2011 there are documented cases of previously law abiding citizens being so adversely influenced by the behaviour of others around them that they too were reduced to looting.
Get a group of drunken football fans together and, in the event of a loss of a vital match, the sometimes violent behaviour of a few individuals can often flair up into a situation where it is mob rule.
As humans we are naturally gregarious and, unfortunately, this isn’t always a good thing. Add in alcohol and an environment where the overall attitude is that of, and I’m supposing here, “anything goes”, it surprises me that the behaviours as witnessed charity dinner have only just come to light; I doubt whether this was the first instance.
No-one can ever say that women asks for such behaviour, and I feel certain that there were some of the hostesses that had no idea of how the evening would pan out, but the fact that event had excluded women guests in the first place, together with the alleged stipulation from Artista to bring “black sexy shoes”, black underwear and do their hair and make-up in a style suitable for a “smart sexy place; that coupled with the NDA, should have rung alarm belIs to any potential hostess, even if it WAS the Presidents Club. I, for one, would have run for the hills.
Being honest with ourselves then, the sexist attitudes have always been there. Up to now it’s been behind closed doors, hidden behind the veil of secrecy for years. I’m grateful, this is now changing, and with such exposes as Madison Marriage’s, the door is being prised open. However as a woman I feel that WE too need to step up, we need to accept some personal responsibility.
NO, I’m not saying we ask for such poor behaviour, NO we don’t condone “a rotten, sexist culture” as the FT put it but there were 130 women in the same situation in that room, 130 women who, if they came together as a group, would have had tremendous strength, 130 women who, in numbers, could have made it quite clear that what was going on was totally unacceptable and, whilst I’ve sometimes got an over developed imagination, 130 women, who could have said enough’s enough and walked out on mass, and I, for one, would have loved to be a fly on THAT wall
Founder, Elaine K Sullivan Ltd
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