I’ll never get a promotion, but at least I’ll look good at my performance review

Laura Dowler
3 min readDec 19, 2018

I got a new dress today, and I’m so excited! It was on sale, so I only had to pay 79% of the regular price and it will be perfect for going out dancing with my girlfriends. I won’t be able to wear it golfing, which is where all the best networking happens, but I never get invited to tee off anyhow. Now that I think about it, my discount actually mirrors the gender pay gap in this country…weird.

The bold pattern of my new dress makes me feel like I can do anything. Maybe now I won’t be afraid to ask for the raise I should have received 2 years ago, but somehow got passed over for Josh in accounting because he plays golf with the department head, goes to the “Gentleman’s Club” with the Accounts Manager, and sees the CEO at that cigar and scotch bar that is always mysteriously bereft of women. I bet Josh drinks blended scotch and can’t tell a Laphroaig from a Glenfiddich. Maybe I should start smoking cigars in the morning, that way my dress can be infused with a pheromone that makes men take me more seriously.

But I’m not going to worry about scotch and cigars, I’m going to think about how this stretchy fabric is super comfortable, and I need comfortable dresses because I spend so much of my day doing menial tasks for men. Like when Josh asks me to pick the pomegranate seeds out of his salad because they aren’t “CrossFit compliant.” I have to do it because technically, I guess he is my boss now. Ugh, now I have a stain on my dress that clashes with the fabric, and I think pomegranate stains are permanent just like my middle management position.

Back to my new dress! The neckline is perfect and will hopefully prevent Chad in accounts payable from looking down my shirt every time I bring him a file. Although, it is kind of a high neckline and Cynthia will probably call me a prude. Why is is so hard to choose clothes? Am I dressing for men or women, or for myself? I can’t keep up with all the think pieces. I think I’m supposed to be dressing for myself, but that never feels quite right. I just know that I’m not supposed to wear yoga pants outside of my house or the world will collapse upon itself under the weight of a million women being comfortable in public for five minutes.

Anyway, these cap sleeves are so comfortable and perfect for keeping me cool from the burning anger over being nicknamed the office “Ice Queen”. I haven’t been able to figure out how I was bestowed this name. It might be because I keep reporting interoffice IM dick pics to HR, or it might be because of the space heater under my desk. Speaking of which, I’m afraid no one will even be able to see my new dress because I have to wear a parka at my desk since this building is so damn cold.

I swear I read an article about how the modern office temperature is based on male metabolism. And another article about how seat belts are more dangerous for women because they are designed for men, and it took apple like three years to add a period tracker to health app. Can I talk about periods? Why am I even questioning this? Of course I can talk about periods, it’s a natural occurrence that happens to over 50% of humans on this planet. But Josh saw me carrying a tampon to the bathroom the other day, and he looked really uncomfortable.

Is there anything in this world that is not designed for male comfort? I can think of one thing — this dress. This dress was obviously designed by a woman, after all it has pockets.