So before I get started, there’re some things I should say first: kinda like a disclaimer.
I say a lot of crazy stuff. I generally don’t care what people think of the crazy stuff that I say. I also don’t generally care if it’s “accurate” – I write (or speak) based on my own impressions and feelings about something. I don’t usually look things up. You might need all your opinions to be completely supported by concrete facts – I don’t. Because there are so many things that are based as much in perception as they are supported by ‘science.’
That’s just how I am.
I expect that means that only people who are my friends will read this stuff, since if they didn’t appreciate – or at least accept – the way I conduct my thinking, they would (I’d hope) stop being my friends. I’m alright with that. All I ask of friends is that they remember that I’m not trying to tell you what the truth is. I’m just here telling you my truth.
Today I ended up in a totally-not-serious quippy discussion on Facebook. A friend, in mock despair, asked why he should be denied a shield maiden. He wants an Eowyn. I suggested that maybe it’s because there are few maidens in the world, and maybe he could adjust for a shield matron. (What was in my mind, by the by, is that generally a maiden is expected to be virginal. Certainly there’s the expectation in the Lord of the Rings series that Eowyn is a virgin, as is appropriate for that kind of setting.) A friend of his whom I don’t know suggested its because he’d only ignore her, like all kings of Gondor (more LotR), in favour of a doomed love. That same friend then responds to me, saying that, “the blessing of chivalry is that, to us, all ladies are maidens.”
Ah, chivalry. Pigeonholing women since the middle ages. Maybe. If legends are to be believed. Tales of heroism and romance and knights and damsels in towers and quests and ….
This is where I had to remind myself that this is Facebook, this not a serious discussion, and I don’t know this chivalrous dude.
And this is where my friend said, “And he stole my line!”
And this is where I facepalmed.
What makes someone think that every woman wants to be thought of as a “maiden?” I realize that this was I no way the point of the conversation but really? I was annoyed. Why can’t I be a shield matron? Why can’t I be a shield woman? A shield chick? Some women might want to be maidenly. Not me.
And let’s then discuss how chivalrous Eragorn not only preferred his doomed love with the willowy elven damsel, but how he, and King Whasssisface, both chivalrously denied Eowyn’s wish to do battle? Chivalry doesn’t actually encourage women to be Eowyns. Chivalry wants for damsels tossing kerchiefs as knights ride off to war.
Well, you may object – I mean modern chivalry then. Oh you do? No you don’t. Or every lady wouldn’t have to be a maiden. She could be a ride or die bitch, instead.