Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Safety Sermon

In honor of some very, very exciting news I'll soon share, here's an old favorite from the archives:

This is me on my first day of work here in New Orleans.

For the record, it took about three minutes of outdoor exposure in order to achieve this degree of
"hot pink face" and  "sweaty upper lip."

When I arrived at what Entergy refers to as "the lab," I was ushered into a conference room for what was described to me as "safety training." But just a few seconds into the gentleman's presentation and I began to feel incredibly under-dressed. For this was no training.

This was a sermon.

It began, "The word safety don't make you think of a cool spring breeze. It don't make you think of the gilded leaves of fall, glistening golden in the sun..." He continued to wax poetic, listing off things the word safety doesn't make one think of. And as I began to wonder whether he was reading a poem or reciting this from memory or what the what... I hear the words, "don't make you think of an attractive blonde lady..." But I thought to myself, surely I heard him wrong...

He waxed on a little further and after he said this:

"My wife and I have a tradition in our marriage. We come home from work and we talks to one another and we say, 'How was yo' day?' It helps us keep the flame of passion burnin' strong... you know... keeps things spicy..."

and I'm thinking I don't think that means what he thinks it means and my face is getting tired from not laughing, I again hear, "The word safety... you know, it don't make you think of an attractive blonde lady..." but this time he waves a hand in my general direction and says, "No offense."

Whoa whoa whoa.

Allow me to clarify my confusion:

Was he worried I would be offended
  • because I am not blonde?
  • because I am not attractive?
  • because I am the only woman in the office?
  • because it's a pretty weird and sexist remark to make? 
    • especially in the work place?
    • especially twice?

I guess I'll never know. And I also didn't learn a single thing about safety because I'm pretty sure I already knew the word didn't make me think of crystal clear blue Caribbean waters.


  1. The inverse is also true. When people see me, they never think of safety.

  2. Are you sure it wasn't a gender sensitivity training? That was the "what not to do" portion.

  3. could 'safety' mean not running a half 'marathong' with an injured knee?


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