Day 286: Locker rooms

Day 286: Locker rooms

Day 286: Locker rooms

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

I am not a jock.

I think that’s pretty obvious to anyone who’s ever met me.

That’s partly why I didn’t bat an eyelid to Donald Trump’s claim that “Grab ’em by the pussy” is just locker room talk.

But then something occurred to me: I actually spend quite a lot of time in a locker room. And I have never encountered a conversation like that, at least not in the locker room.

What do we talk about in the locker room? We talk about our jobs, our kids, money problems, holiday plans, training tips and techniques…relatively benign things.

Someone did once hypothesise or muse (I really don’t know how best to characterise it, but there was no mistaking that he was curious about committing the act) about sexually abusing a child, but it wasn’t in the locker room. It was out on the floor. I looked at him curtly and said “What the fuck is wrong with you, man?” before telling him in no uncertain terms that I would tear off his head before he even got a chance.

His response was galling: “Aren’t you worried about going to jail?”

Perhaps he was trolling me? I don’t know. I’m not sure what there is to gain from bragging from a hospital bed that you successfully trolled me. It’s just as well that he’s gone now.

I also once had a boss who openly bragged about committing drunken acts of fraud and possible criminal behaviour – but none of this was in the locker room. Usually we’d be in a business meeting or a pub for such stories to be told.

My point is to say that writing off a comment such as “Grab ’em by the pussy” as locker room banter is both misleading and a disservice to a lot of people who actually use locker rooms.

I’d be more inclined to believe that assholes don’t need an excuse to say asshole-ish things – they pretty much say them anywhere.

That said, Mr Trump wasn’t in a locker room when he made those comments – he was on a bus.

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