When You Need Them Least: Mansplainations

Certain scenarios in life are inescapable. Sometimes they’re self-induced, and sometimes they’re products of society. They’re not always unpleasant, but when they’re not always on your terms, they can feel straining. So when mansplaining strikes in these moments it feels especially cruel. Here are some of my most treasured.

During Routine Maintenance

If you’re lucky enough to have a running car you know the frantic dance to keep it running properly. One day I noticed the air in my back tires were low so I stopped at a gas station. Newer air pumping stations allow you to enter the air pressure number you need and then beeps when you’ve hit that number. Pretty simple! As I was capping my last tire a man CRAWLED OUT OF THE BUSHES BEHIND ME and before he was even fully off his knees started in on, “You know what you could do for next time is—” but I didn’t hear the rest because I’d already closed the door to my car. First of all, WHERE DID YOU COME FROM? Second, to my knowledge I didn’t stare at the machine in shock and then put the pump through my open window in hopes that the air would travel through the interior floor into my tires, so what additional information could there even be? Third, will you now exit the same way you entered (the bushes)?

During Pet Duties

Pets. A lot of us have them. Like over 85% of people I read recently?? Feels crazy. They mostly take care of themselves, but they do have needs beyond rubs and being fed. That’s something I’m very aware of after having my dog for ten years. However, I didn’t leash train him like I should have when he was a puppy so he essentially drags my body forward when we go on walks, and this is the life I deserve. I was walking him one day when a car pulls up beside me and a man leans out the window, almost angrily, to shout at me: “You know he doesn’t have to pull you like that, right?” He puts the car in park, still peering his eyes into mine, and when I didn’t respond he yelled, “There are better leashes and a lot of different reinforcement techniques you can try,” as if reversing this nightmare hasn’t been my life’s sole purpose.

During Downtime With Coworkers

Unless you work alone or refuse to engage at all with the people you work with – other living humans just trying to get through the day same as you – there are moments where you pass the time together. In one of these moments a coworker told me he’d started to do puzzles to relax. I said, “Oh, like jigsaw puzzles?” He confirmed yes, jigsaw puzzles, and began to describe how he goes about starting one — edges first in a pile, then similar colors together, and then similar shapes — in such detail that I’m positive he didn’t think I’d ever put a puzzle together before, or that if I had it probably took me years seeing that had no method and just took one piece at a time and then attempted it on every other piece until it fit, or that I just ate the puzzle out of confusion.

During Your Job

For people who are physically and mentally able, jobs are unavoidable. Some are meaningful, most are not. I’ve had what seems like 75 jobs in the past 10 years, and many of them have been in restaurants. No matter where I am or what my role is at the restaurant, I’m always tickled to death when I hear men explain food to women considering it was one of the few arenas we had some sort of autonomy over for centuries. I’ve especially loved when the food I serve is explained to me. One breakfast – a menu that pretty much wherever go consists of the six same things, and so if you serve them you probably know those items very well – a man that I’d served before explained to me one by one every way an egg could be cooked as I was taking his order.

During Conversations About Music

The music conversation when you meet new people is a guarantee. If you’re like me, you never actually start that conversation, you just find yourself in it. Not only does one person in particular always makes an appearance in this music swap, they are that man who crawled out of the bushes while I was pumping up my tires, except everywhere I go. Would you believe me if I told you Bob Dylan haunts my daily life? He is my Seinfeld Superman figurine. And no disrespect to those who enjoy his music, but he is my nemesis. This does not stop men from explaining him to me. In fact, it only encourages it. Perhaps I’m not understanding. They bet it’s his voice that’s turning me off, haha, it’s gotten worse as he’s aged. Have I listened to his lyrics? No, I tell them, how I experience music is through the art of dance. Sure, they say, but think about his music through the political and cultural lens of his time. No thanks, I say in so many words. Yes, they assure me.

During Internet/Cable Set Up

Setting up the internet is now as integral to the moving process as transferring electricity and water into your name. If you’ve never been in charge of this task, consider yourself blessed. Recently as an upgrade option Comcast sent a cable box requiring an HDMI cord, without an HDMI cord. A total Comcast move tbh. I called to tell them that, and also that the box wasn’t working with my HDMI cord. The man on the phone wasn’t listening to me so much as he was responding to keywords before I was done talking. In this instance, the keyword was “HDMI”. “You see, HDMI actually stands for something. I learned this a couple years ago.” Be still my heart! “It means ‘high definition’,” and this is the best part, “and then the ‘M’ and ‘I’ stand for something.” Ha, okay, a couple years ago you learned the phrase “high definition” but not the “M” or “I” part and still wanted to offer up this info free of charge.

During Online Interaction

Social media, man. (Frank Sinatra voice) That’s life. It is now anyway. So as a woman on Twitter I reserve this slot for every time my own joke has been explained back to me by a man.

During Small Talk with Strangers

This one’s bound to happen if you ever leave your house. Bars are ripe for it, and yet I continue to go. One of my favorite things to do at a bar is to be asked by a man if I know what a certain words mean. It goes: jukebox, staring at a TV, vocab test. For one lucky man whose favorite thing to do at a bar is apparently ask women if they know what certain words mean, our paths met one fateful night. A highlight word for me from our conversation just so happens to be my favorite PowerPoint swipe option: synergy.

During Political Discourse

Between Facebook and your extended family, somebody’s going to yell their political opinion at you. Sorry. This year is especially yell-y and proof that it is definitely the end of the world. Well, this year’s candidates and Oprah’s bread commercial. Chilling. During this political cycle we’ve also born witness to men’s obsession with Bernie Sanders, which has been like a backwards interpretation of Field of Dreams. You did not built it, and yet they came. They came out of the cornfields prepared to school you on this renegade, and you’re like, “I was just trying to nap on these bleachers, please, my family and I are tired.” Men’s obsession with Bernie Sanders is also similar to that movie in that I could field an entire baseball team with the number of men that have explained him to me.

Before you go! Autostraddle runs on the reader support of our AF+ Members. If this article meant something to you today — if it informed you or made you smile or feel seen, will you consider joining AF and supporting the people who make this queer media site possible?

Join AF+!


Los Angeles based writer. Let's keep it clean out there!

Erin has written 208 articles for us.


  1. Erin, you are the best.

    Also, which outfits do you wear to deal with each of these situations?

  2. OMG. Internet/Cable Set Up or any other kind customer technical support it’s like a poster for mansplainations, because I don’t know how it goes in other countries, but in mine 99.99% of those assholes are men and of course they asume that I’m a 3 year old child that doesn’t even know how to even start her freaking computer.

    • OH MY GOD, I know this feeling. As a woman who worked in the field before becoming disabled it was hell. Now when I have to call tech support and get a man I have to hear the snide comments… And I have numerous certifications etc. Went to school for this sort of thing. When I call you to tell you something is broken, it’s broken. Or I bring my tablet in because it’s not charging, don’t mansplain something to me. When I tell you the charging port is broken inside… *listen to me*


  3. The walls of my office are too thin for me to be laughing this much!

    Bob Dylan. wtf man, seriously.

  4. Wonderful.

    I do have another reading of the puzzle guy though — it sounds like *he* had only just discovered this magic secret to puzzles and needed everyone to know it.

  5. working

    me: i can’t get this computer to stop beeping
    man: did you google it? i’ve learned taht google can be really helpful for technology issues.
    me: *has a master’s degree in IT
    me: *is the company IT person
    me: *is under 30 so yes i’ve googled it
    me: yup.

  6. This is almost triggering with how spot-on this is. What is it with male troll dolls living around gas stations in the bushes, only to come out to mansplain women when they’re taking care of shit all by themselves?

  7. Add to the list — At the gym.
    The gym is the perfect place for guys to assert their physical prowess and presume you are completely incompetent with machinery at the same time.
    Good thing sweatpants and queer themed t-shirts are great dude repellant.

    • I do aerial circus (silks, trapeze etc) and I one of the places I train also houses a crossfit box. One of the single most satisfying moments of my life was beating a guy who had proudly shown me that his biceps are so big he can’t touch his shoulders with his thumbs to a chin up competition he’d challenged me to. He’d spent 15 minutes explaining what a chin up is, how you train for upper body strength and offering to let me have a ‘helper’ to hold my legs.

      • I like imagining that your profile picture was taken during that competition. Like, you just started doing them with one arm just to show off.

  8. All of this is so incredible.

    Working in a restaurant has really helped me understand how much I HATE men. Especially men over 40. They’re literally the worst??? For no reason???

      • And so condescending! Because they have to talk to women! Because they are so fragile!

        • have u had older men do the thing where they seek you out in the dining room to personally hand u their 2 dollar tip on a 40 dollar tab as if it’s a reward?

          • I haven’t worked as a server for several years, but I can still recall EXACTLY the look they give you when they say “this is for all your hard work.”

  9. Erin, when I came to this : “During this political cycle we’ve also born witness to men’s obsession with Bernie Sanders, which has been like a backwards interpretation of Field of Dreams. You did not built it, and yet they came”

    … I gave this deep, joyful, loud laugh. The kind you don’t’ give often, that ripples through your body and makes people laugh with you even if they don’t get the joke.

    Oh your posts are a delight, each and every one of them. I want to keep this one close and pet it and feed it and cuddle with it in front of Netflix.

    I’m gonna end up writing you a fucking poem Erin is what I’m saying (and I’m sorry but I suck at poems)

  10. Wait, I don’t understand any of this. I fear I have been so thoroughly conditioned by mansplaining that I am no longer capable of grasping any concept explained by a non-man.

    Maybe if you could repeat all of this while staring at my boobs and/or scratching your groin regardless of who may be watching, it might help.

  11. Laughing so hard! My manager mansplained journalism to me. Even though I just explained I am getting my MA in communication…. and he majored in graphic design.

    The worst was when I wore a Led Zeppelin t shirt and a boy played Over the Hills and Far Away low on his laptop and stared at me until I recognized it “just to make sure.” But that’s more of a “fake geek girl” thing than a mansplaining thing. Still wanted to murder him.

  12. When I studied abroad, I had a friend who I realized in retrospect was a master mansplainer. To his credit(?), he would mansplain everything to everyone, not just women. One time he tried to mansplain my own language to me. Which he’d studied in high school 20 years ago. I try to see the best in people, I really do, but come on.

  13. Oh man, any sports hobbies.

    I’ve had dudes try to mansplain my home river to me. Fuck off dude. You’ve probably been boating a few more years than me. You might even have been on this river when it’s been higher than I have (because I’m not driving 6-10 hours once a year for a festival so when the river gets high, we go play somewhere else that we don’t get to see very often). But I have spent more time on this river than you, 1000% guaranteed. I’ve soloed this river; you have not. I know this river better than you.

    I’ve had dudes try to mansplain hockey at me too, which dude, I’ve been a fan since second grade. But I also have a life that doesn’t revolve around watching other people chase a puck around the ice, so I honestly don’t care about the upcoming draft.

    • THIS! Having to withstand people “testing” me on all the rookie stats for the season and assuring me they “know more” because they played as a kid…

      • Oh man I hate people who assume they know more because they played as a kid because 1.) they’re usually wrong and 2.) it gets me apoplectic because I would have LOVED to have had the opportunity to play hockey as a kid but guess what? There were no teams for me to play on; that was not even a possibility I had, so screw you random mansplainey dudes for rubbing it in my face all the opportunities you’ve had that I was denied due to my gender.

        • Yes! Exactly. I actually tried to explain that to a guy when he was questioning my “commitment to the sport”. I finally got so fed up when apparently my exclusion from teams based on my gender wasn’t enough and I explained that my family simply couldn’t have afforded for me to play hockey anyway (that shit is hella expensive!). He moved on to explain to me ways that it would’ve been cheaper if I had borrowed equipment / skates, etc. It was like mansplaining inception.

  14. this magnificent.

    my favorite personal mansplaining moment was when a male colleague in graduate school tried to explain academic feminism to me, immediately after he declared he’d never read any.

    • Oh dear. This is too much, and too, too familiar… How is it that men are apparently socialized to think they are experts on anything and everything even if they have no idea at all? This reminds me of some unfortunate exchanges I had with a painfully (for me, at least) misinformed and vocal man the other day about race, ethnicity, and affirmative action… among other things.

      I wish they’d learn that other people may in fact be more competent, even if they we do not throw our knowledge into their faces at every opportunity.

  15. Hahaha, yes! I would also add: orientation.
    I know a girl with great orientation skills who nonetheless always got a lesson about it whenever she went somewhere “new” with a male friend.
    I, on the other hand, had to withstand a mansplanation by a collegue regarding why it is so normal and expectable that women should have no clue about their own whereabouts.

    Also, just got mansplained by a fellow poet that I probably don’t like his (male) idol’s poems because their imagery is too rough. He was really disturbed about me not liking his hero and finally found his peace when he managed to blame it on my sensitivity. <3

  16. I had (past tense) a friend who did this *constantly*. There was more than one occasion where the following exchange would occur:

    “Have you even read/seen/ever known anything about this thing?”
    “Well, no, but I’m assuming this is how it goes.”

    Pls stop.

    Whenever we would argue about something he would just rephrase whatever I said so that it sounded like what he had said (even though it wasn’t), so that he could be all “See? This is what I said to start with!”

  17. We recently bought a car. The dude trying to sell us all the extra bullshit warranties was terrible.

    He told us like five times that we were the only ones to turn down all the extras. Dude, you aren’t going to win us over. It’s been 5 hours and our kids are losing their shit.

    My wife was like “how much is it going to cost?” and later he was like “oh I thought that meant you were interested” and she says “no I just knew that you had to get to that part for us to be done.”

    I have never loved her more.

    • yesss! how is it still legal for car salesmen to essentially hold you captive as a break down technique? genuinely curious

  18. I’m not sure which I hate more, men who tell me my gender doesn’t exist, or men who explain my gender to me! >:(

    Amazing, hilarious piece! Thank you!

  19. I had a man mansplained to me how being vegan is best for my body especially my reproduction organs. I just wanted to buy mustard greens from his booth at the farmers’ market.

    This is how horror films start, I backed away and have not been there since.

  20. I actually had someone argue with me about the geography of my home state. When trying to explain that I was from a city that was just northeast of Detroit, he told me that was impossible as I would have had to be born either in Canada or in a lake.

    • Ah yes. I frequently am told that I can’t live on the Gulf east of Houston because Houston’s on the Gulf and we all know that no land exists east of Houston. Like, if you were to keep driving on I-10, you’d just fall into the ocean or some shit.

      It’s pretty cool.

      • Yep, because you must not know where you live in relation to anywhere else. That’s the most logical answer.

  21. Oh, I just remembered that my mom told me that my brother got into an argument with his girlfriend and with my mom over what the difference between a tornado watch and a tornado warning was. They were both right, but he was just not having it.

  22. One of my students is an older bloke who comes for one-to-one conversation lessons. Despite the fact that his level of English is not really up to giving drawn-out explanations, he has mansplained topics as diverse as sharks, Kevlar, reservoirs, Canada and Santa Claus. And that’s only in the last few classes. Clearly, he is an expert on all the things.

    • Sam this is so true and funny. Comment award. Mansplaining doesn’t need a shared language to speak or be understood.

  23. Oh my god, this was a) hilarious! And b) a really unfortunate reminder of a particular Facebook friend I had who I eventually just muted because he would literally come into my messages and just spew random facts or opinions on current events, usually about how great guns are. Sometimes he sent pictures of his dog and that was the only good thing I got out of the experience.

  24. Last week a man acquaintance of mine who studies Ancient Greek philosophy told me he was studying a particular collection of work by Plato. He massively mis-pronounced the name of the collection, because he is American. I corrected him, because I am Greek (and fluent in the language), which he knows.

    He then proceeded to completely miss that I was correcting him, assume that any sounds coming out of my mouth must imply some very deep confusion, and mansplain at me, in a talking-to-a-child voice, “Plato was an Ancient Greek philosopher”.

  25. Ugh I have a coworker who is like all of these combined into one. He will walk over to my desk and just start talking to me about what he thinks I should do with my life, or why it would benefit me to cut sugar out of my diet, or why I should learn to fix my car myself instead of taking it to the auto shop, and inside my head I’m screaming “DID I ASK YOU FOR ADVICE? NO? WELL THEN WHY ARE YOU EVEN TALKING TO ME RIGHT NOW????”

  26. After maintaining the plants at a garden store for a couple months, I had to ask my manager to coach my male coworker on watering techniques because he kept watering incorrectly and killing plants, and whenever I’d give him advice he’d just ignore me.

    Two weeks later we’re in the break room talking and this same male coworker goes, “Yeah, to water plants you can’t just water them on the top. You have to water them on their soil, I invented that.”



    bless u for inventing agrarian society, good sir

  27. Oh god this post is amazing. Mansplaining is The Worst. I wanna have the confidence these men have.

  28. at a fundraiser for my partner’s non-profit.

    male acquaintance: hey, i saw your goat pictures on FB, you work with goats?

    me: yeah, at my friend’s farm, about once a week, for like 7 years now. [to myself: dude, are you stalking me? you never interact w/me on FB]

    him: that’s so cool, i read this thing about how goats eat everything.

    me: they don’t actually, that’s myth.

    him: yeah they do, I read this thing…[explains the thing]…

    me: …..oh. I’m gonna go see if my partner needs help. [turned around, rolled eyes, walked away]

    please just don’t.

  29. Thank you for writing this, Erin. This article and all of the comments feel so collectively frustrating but also cathartic to be able to vent about them!

  30. Right now I can only think of examples that’s happened to my mum. Like how my granddad tells her “no this painting you made ages ago is excellent, much better than that other one”. Even though she’s an artist with four years of education,
    and he’s a judge who made some pictures in college once.

    She also has an employee at her doggie daycare who keeps “discovering” things about how dogs work, which is basically just his own ideas based on how he interprets something he sees a dog do (and that my mum already knows dogs do). Then he discusses how he thinks they should handle it. Again, even though she’s actually trained to deal with dogs. And has worked with them for a few years now. And is his boss. She also happens to be 100 times smarter than him, but I suppose you can’t expect a man to see that. Hell, I understand the dogs better and I only help out there once in a while.

    I’m glad this makes my mum angry instead of insecure. If you’re not aware of what’s happening, you might mistake mansplaining for a guy actually knowing more than you, and then you might take his advice – which is rarely a good idea.
    Or feel bad about yourself, when the only thing you’re doing wrong is being better than a man at something.

    Hey, now I remembered an example of being mansplained to myself! Same guy, lunch break, telling me chickpeas contains a very large amount of vitamin B12. Even though I’m a vegetarian who used to be a vegan. I have both had chickpeas as a regular part of my diet and looked up everything I might miss in order to get the right dietary supplements – Like vitamin D and B12. I think I would know if I could have skipped those pills in favour of some hummus.

  31. Look, we may have discovered the puzzle diet by accident but by golly it’s been good for my figure!

  32. Food!! I don’t eat gluten even though I don’t have Celiac because it makes me feel terrible. I’ve done TONS of reading and research on this. But so many men feel the need to tell me they saw an article on facebook that gluten sensitivity isn’t real and then tell me all the nutrients I’m missing out on by not eating gluten, while I watch them eat a twinkie.

    • Ugh, yes, I dread even mentioning “gluten-free” when I go out to lunch/dinner with new friends/coworkers. So many opinions on gluten! I know I can’t eat it, trust that I know my own body!

    • This happens a lot to vegetarians and vegans too! Omnivores just love telling us that we’re not getting the right nutrients, although most of us know more about this than them – we do our research, you see.

  33. If any man comes up to you with a hat that says Make America Great Again, run away. Run very far away.

  34. I have very strong feelings about men always feeling like I need them to help me park my car. I’ve been driving in NYC and parallel parking for 10 years. And I’m good at parking. I don’t need you to tell me when to start turning the steering wheel the other way. Leave me alone!

  35. Among my least favorite things is when my dad mansplains at my mother and me. It’s *especially* frustrating when he does it about food — he always seems compelled to go into detail about the procedure/listing the ingredients of everything he prepares (occasionally in a way that makes me cringe because *I’m* the one who actually went to culinary school.)

    • Is he really, really proud to even be cooking? Because I find that men who do things women around them take for granted and do without a fuss often feel the need to talk about it and describe it as if anyone actually cares…

      • I don’t know if it’s so much that he’s taking masculine pride in a commonly-viewed-as-feminine art, or if it’s more that he watches so much Food Network that he always has to talk like he’s presenting a dish before a panel of judges.

  36. This is awesome.

    I had a nephrologist try to tell me about preeclampsia last week. I’m a maternal fetal medicine doc so like preeclampsia is my life. My nemesis. My arch enemy. Yeah dude we know each other, thanks.

    • did not know what a lot of these words were at first tbh, but i cant imagine having that wealth of knowledge and then it being re-explained. *stares into the void*

  37. Guitar store man wouldn’t sell me (well my mother, I was 14)a left handed guitar until I learned to play one

    Which makes no sense

    So I learned right handed and then two years ago got bored of not being able to even entertain the idea of playing rhythm guitar

    (I fingerstyle it up)

    And bought a left handed guitar and learned everything over

    Still not as good lefty as righty (but I can tell I have more POTENTIAL as a lefty) and now I can play mediocre Jose Gonzalez covers both ways, asshole guitar salesman

    Now when I go to guitar stores my fav thing is to practice scales upside down lefty and when a ma offers to show me the lefty guitars I start playing a song while making direct eye contact

    Sorry Bro
    Now u gotta listen to blackbird for the billionth time

    • That’s actually mind boggling. Like, if it’s your first guitar, you are buying it to learn how to play it. And also, he’s a salesman so, like, why not just sell the damn thing???

  38. I’m addicted to reading everyone’s awful mansplaining stories, they are giving me so much life while simultaneously making me rage in recognition.

    I was out with a guy at Forbidden Planet not too long ago, and he kept asking me, “Who is this?” and, “Do you know this character?” It took me aaaages of replying, “Yeah, that’s ____” to realize he was trying to TEST me/my geekery, and not actually seeking my help.

  39. I used to work as an Event Coordinator at a conference center of sorts. We had a giant LED signs to display our events to the major highway in our town. I was in charge of the sign and it was the worst. The software was old it had limited functionality, traffic was going so fast and the speed of the letters was never enough. to display the whole event before you passed the sign. It was a science of height of letters, vs speed, vs amount of information. Trust me I had tried to make it work the highest speed those little letters could spew out. One day a man just waltzes right into my work, into our tiny office to inform me that we should increase the speed of the letters on our LED sign. Also please note, our conference center was right on the highway but he would have had to make an effort to take the exit ramp to us just to tell us to increase the speed of the letters. I was the one in charge of the sign so I said, it is up as high as it will go. He said, why can’t you scroll it like it is on TV, CNN can scroll text at the bottom. I said, uhh, thanks. Also, you aren’t moving at 65 mph while watching the bottom of the CNN screen buddy.

    • omg Nikki I would have been actually kinda freaked out that he CAME INTO YOUR OFFICE to try to correct you. Come on, dude, send a weird email or something next time.

  40. Oh yes, it was great when my straight cisgender older brother explained to me that the anxiety I feel when people ask me if I’m seeing anyone is just me projecting homophobia onto people.

    The world is not homophobic. It’s just all in my head. How silly of me.

  41. Collectors world:
    Dude bought a mint in box set for his wife. Wife states what it costs. I politely tell them that they might have been tricked because it is not worth as much as they have paid.
    Dude: Weeeeeeeell, I’m not in to this kind of collecting BUT I have collected OTHER items and IN THAT WORLD we go by Ebay prices and THIS THING is not up on Ebay so it must be RARE.
    Me: It is not up on Ebay because it is one of the most common items in our line of collecting.
    Me: Geez, hold on a minute, I will now send a worldwide email chain to everyone who has ever sold or will ever sell on Ebay to ask them why they do not put up stuff on Ebay…
    Me: … yeah. Good for you.

    Gaming world:
    “Oh hello non-dude person, wanna play an awesome game and just you know play a game?” said no cis-gender gamer dude ever.

  42. Please can we have an article for witty, snarky and hilarious comebacks to mansplanations?

  43. Sometimes things like this happen to me and it’s only later that I realise they were mansplaining, and then I get bummed out.

    For example:
    I was volunteering and, afterwards, was walking with a guy who’d also been volunteering. I told him I was heading to the train station, he asked if I knew where it was, and I told him I did.
    He then told me he’d walk with me, so I could find it easier.
    I told him, “I know where the train station is, but I don’t mind the company.”
    He basically said something along the lines of “I wasn’t going that way, only if you needed directions.” So I told him, again, that I knew where the train station was.
    He then realised he’d left his hat inside, so left to go retrieve it, but not before giving me the most detailed description of how to reach the train station, even though I’d told him three times I knew where it was. (Also, as in a lot of cities, the train station is literally right in the centre of town and is therefore the easiest landmark to find?!)

    And recently I was talking about video games to a guy in my uni group project.
    After basically giving each other a rundown of our childhoods based on the games we played (and him doing the usual “Handheld consoles are crap, why did you play them, PC is where it’s at!”), he proceeded to tell me, out of nowhere, that “A lot of girls got into gaming when Dota 2 was released.”
    I’m still not sure why he wanted to tell me that? Did he think it was relevant to me because I have a vagina? Who knows!

  44. HOME DEPOT. I was buying an indoor plant, just for fun because I deserve nice things, and some garden soil for a separate project. At least six different employees asked if we needed help- no thanks, we’re good. Then middle aged white guy employee saw us looking at pots and crossed the entire plant warehouse to come talk to us.
    “Do you need any help?”
    “No, thanks. We’re good.”
    “Cause if you’re going to use THAT to re-pot THAT-”
    “We’re not. Thanks.”
    Because it’s not possible that we’re purchasing items for multiple unrelated projects. Or that we might know anything about what we’re doing here.

  45. A few months ago my I was visiting my home town and my Mom asked if I could pick up my younger brother on the way. In the car he got very worked up over the issue of domestic abuse; apparently he had read one study which allegedly stated that women physically assault men as much as men assault their female partners. I have a master’s degree in Gender Studies and this goes against everything I have ever heard or read, which I pointed out to him. He replied that yes, another acquaintance of his who was also “studying gender… er… roles” had told him the exact same thing, but this did not affect him the least bit.

    He proceeded to get even more worked up over male-on-male violence declaring this to be an “even greater problem” than male-on-female violence. He was genuinely surprised when my partner raised the issue of sexual assault on women; apparently he had NEVER CONSIDERED that in the 28 years he’s lived on the planet. I tried to push through the immense aggravation he was causing me with his painful stupidity – he was essentially using MRA arguments – to which he responded by attempting to finish my sentences (and failing miserably).

    By the time we reached my grandmother’s house I was so angry I couldn’t even take in all the drama my Mom and Grandma were generating. That was the day I learned I had a limit on getting upset and once it’s been reached it acts as a sort of deflection shield.

  46. Ohh male domintaed careers! Been a wildland firefighter for seven years. So much mansplain… so little attention span.

    Did we discuss a category in which women can have their own phsyical limits mansplained to them?

    Dude realizing he’s carrying less hose rolls than me:
    ‘Let me take some of that weight off your back…’ (and I love this line) ‘..if you can do it, I can’

    He didn’t last the duration of the two week tour. Turns out even if I can routinely do whatever ‘it’ is in the fire world, doesnt mean shit for him.

    • ahah I love this too. I’m a sailor and did quite a few races. I loved dudes being like “hold on let me do this for you i’m much stronger” => throws off his back and lets the sail go. “thanks dude!”

  47. hilarious! (and reinforces my lifestyle choice as a self-employed, introverted, lesbian separatist type, so thank you.)

  48. This is beyond gold. This is… platinum is more valuable than gold right?

    Damn it. If only there were a man here to explain this to me!

  49. This was brilliant, laughed so much. The first one from my experience that popped into my head was this –
    After way too much searching for the obscure oil my old van takes at the auto store I take it to the counter and say “I think I finally found it”. Clearly hearing the emphasis on think when it was actually on FINALLY (as in stop hiding my oil) young dude behind the counter smugly says, “I can almost guarantee you haven’t, that’s a very specific type of oil you have there, what car do you have?” I look up at the idiot, who is grinning like a pumpkin expecting to be able to keep on mansplaining, I point out the window at my van and say “it’s for that..” He mumbles “oh, yeah you’re probably right then” rings it up in silence, his boss snickers in the corner.
    I suspect this idiot appears from within bushes near air pumps.
    Also my friends husbands mansplain barbecuing to me and missus every summer…WTAF.

  50. I recently had a 21-year-old coworker inform me that he was sure he knew the female reproductive system better than me, a female. He then started telling me about the various parts — including the g-spot and a mispronounced ‘clitoris.’

    This will come as a COMPLETE SHOCK, but did you know women can have multiple orgasms in a short period of time?


  51. I worked as a bike technician.

    I can’t even talk about it, it’s like a repressed memory.

      • Raft guide reporting in to say yep, much horror on this front too (which is not surprising because there’s a lot of overlap between skiing and whitewater and also biking).

  52. about one out of every five times I parallel park in a city…even outside my own building where I park everyday dudes be giving me the “keep going, keep going….STOP!” motions even when I refuse to look at them. I’m like, I LIVE HERE THIS IS MY FRIGGIN STREET!

  53. I initially was nervous coming down to read the comments because I figured there’d be a massive horde of manbabies complaining about this article but NOPE!! Every comment is made of gold and I love every single person here <3

  54. Oh my god the best. This explains why I don’t like Bob Dylan, my anxiety about Sanders, and why I hate bars.

    My favorite mansplains:
    -I bought clipless pedals for my bike, which took a lot of getting used to; the unclipping and clipping by twisting the heel out is not intuitive! I tried them at the shop and then took em for a spin. At a stop light of a HUGE intersection, I suddenly found myself unable to unclip. I slowed to a standstill, then just as slowly tipped and fell onto my side in the middle of the street. A man leaned out of his window; oh boy this is gonna be fun! I said. “Are you okay?” “I’m fine, thanks.” “New pedals?” “Yup.” “Might wanna practice on some grass.” “Thanks.” YES I KNOW THEY WORKED FINE A SECOND AGO THANK YOU.
    -Another form of mansplaining: if you say something snarky and a guy (usually a tipsy one, because this usually takes place at a bar) goes “wow i really like how you said that! that’s so clever! you’re so clever!” I’m like okay you are dismissed thank you. Has this man met so few clever people that any remotely un-formulaic thing I say is SHOCKINGLY clever? Or is he so un-clever that the only way to get out of being out-clevered is by complementing a woman until it’s awkward for everyone? Also we’re wearing the same hat brah, you’re PROBABLY not my type. These dudes usually like “cool girls” and are “feminists” but really just want their own ego stroked.

  55. as a female presenting sex worker, you can count on men talking to you like you have never stepped out of your pink, frilly, bubble wrapped room into the world. like you can’t read or use logic. this was much worse when i used to strip and men would regularly comment on my height and “daintiness” (i had too many men quiz me on literature for it to get to me *too* much). it took so much teeth gritting and smiling to not call them out and see how far up the pole they’d get in my heels.

  56. I teach literature at two different colleges and have a Ph.D. in the subject. Almost every time these facts come up in conversation with a straight non-academic cis-dude, I get a 30 minutes lecture about how I should really read and teach Charles Bukowski.

    Weirdly, no one’s ever actually *asked* me if I’ve read/teach Charles Bukowski.

Comments are closed.