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Women in IT

Something that bothers me on occasion is when I'm talking to a good-looking female coworker. While I'm listening to her and helping her out with her question, or working with her or whatever, part of my brain is wondering what color underwear she's wearing and if "they" are wonderbra-assisted.

She's still a coworker, and someone Id have no problems working with or getting assistance from, but the sexual nature of the relationship (even if suppressed and totally one-sided) is something that's different than the relationships with male coworkers.

I'm guessing and hoping this is pretty common with the men out there. What do the women think about this? Is it just something you accept and ignore? Does it bug you? Would it freak you out to know how common its  happening?

In the words of Dennis Miller - "If you could see inside our brains for ten seconds, you would never stop slapping us"

Regular poster posting anonymously
Tuesday, May 11, 2004

My typical workday is a stream of sexual fantasy briefly interrupted by a few lines of code and reading JoS.

Free Willie
Tuesday, May 11, 2004

I direct you to:

Ladder Theory!
http://www.laddertheory.com/

Extensive research has been done in this field, and is documented in its entirety at that website.

Elephant
Tuesday, May 11, 2004

«In the words of Dennis Miller - "If you could see inside our brains for ten seconds, you would never stop slapping us"»

Or, as Jeff (from the great BBC series "Coupling") said it: "Do you know how to wipe the entire human race? Give women the ability to read our minds. Women think we have normal thoughts in our heads, like them, but we don't. We have disgustoid thoughts. We are walking disgustoids" :)

Regarding the effect you're mentioning - it happens all the time, and I'll find it hard to believe anyone who says "oh, it doesn't happen to me".

Paulo Caetano
Tuesday, May 11, 2004

Maybe Women have the same thoughts too?

Anon
Tuesday, May 11, 2004

The average man thiinks of sex every seven to thirteen minutes according to the statistics I've seen.

Stephen Jones
Tuesday, May 11, 2004

Not possible.  Most men wind up on the "Friends Ladder" as evidenced in Ladder Theory.  Men only have one ladder, thus the behavior the exhibit.

Elephant
Tuesday, May 11, 2004

Back when I did ny time in the Australian Army Reserve, we believed they put bromide in the tea, to curb any "sexual thoughts" we may have.

Whether or not that was true, I don't know.  But I still had rather erotic thoughts on some of the female soldiers in my unit.  And if you have seen some of them, after week in the Australian bush during summer, the tendancy for the male mental processes to drift towards the sexual would have to be indestructable.

Ken Ray
Tuesday, May 11, 2004

Men ogle women at work. And that is worrying because.......? (other than lawsuits!)

KayJay
Tuesday, May 11, 2004

Personally I think about sex almost continuously. Have some woman walk by that is decent looking and I'll be imagining her naked, then spend the next hour imagining a variety of different erotic scenarios with her.

Watch some roosters out in the yard. That's how we men think.

Ed the Millwright
Tuesday, May 11, 2004

I love these topics.

Since you asked what women think about it, I'll offer my opinion. In general, I don't think about it.  Sometimes I can tell when it's happening, most times I don't even wonder. I've got work to do.

It doesn't really bug me unless:
1) the guy is a creep
2) there is some perceived threat that the guy will act on his thoughts.

And, yes, sometimes I'll use it to my advantage. You know, wear the hair down and touch up the bright red lipstick before asking the DBA for a favor. Subtle, but enough.

Now don't get all in a huff. You do it too.

Femme fatale
Tuesday, May 11, 2004

I'd hardly get in a huff... sometimes it takes real effort to get through a day without thinking about how much my job sucks, and wonder how I got all the way to college before anyone told me my interestes would lead me to live in a cubicle/box for the rest of my days.  The cutie from down the hall primping herself and chatting me up for 5 minutes always brightens up the day.

NameWithheldOutOfBravery
Tuesday, May 11, 2004

my guess is that you have no female friends.

what you're describing has nothing to do with women in IT, and everything to do with women, period.  the fact that you see it as an IT issue solely suggests to me that you don't know any women outside of work.

get it straight.

huh
Tuesday, May 11, 2004

Femme Fatale:

Could you provide us with an operational definition of "creep"?  I think I might be one.

name withheld out of cowardice
Tuesday, May 11, 2004

"Now don't get all in a huff. You do it too."

I'll swear on a stack of Bibles, I have NEVER put on lipstick before asking a favor of a female coworker.

I'll enjoy a fantasy from time to time, but I don't experience the problem that the OP has mentioned, that of being unable to think of anything else but sex, or being unable to keep from ogling a goodlooking woman.

If I were to venture a wild guess, OP doesn't have a real-life outlet for his sexual fantasies.

I imagine it doesn't actually women except in the "hey, my eyes are up here" sense, but it likely excludes you from actually getting anywhere with her.  There's a difference between being sexy and just being a creep.

Alyosha`
Tuesday, May 11, 2004

If I were you, I'd count myself lucky to be among ogle-worthy female IT professionals.  They are few and far between in my experience.

creep
Tuesday, May 11, 2004

[I am male and heterosexual]

Since I moved to Europe and found myself a girlfriend who has a seemingly insatiable appetite for sex, I tend not to think of all girls in a sexual context. Continuing sexual satisfaction has reduced my internal "checking-out" of all females.

However...like some females put on lipstick before asking the DBA for a favour, so too do I tend to approach females when asking favours, directions, or the time. There is much more chance of success, and it is an excuse to talk to them.

Herr Herr
Tuesday, May 11, 2004

In response to 'huhs' comment, might it just be the case that this is more of a problem in an industry where (in my experience) women still don't make up a sizeable proportion of the work force?

In my experience the fact that women are so few and far between in this industry only encourages this behaviour from blokes that spend most of their day lookling at other blokes (unless that is their thing, mind).  If we all met more ladies in the work place I'm sure more of us would behave differently.

Not Waving But Drowning
Tuesday, May 11, 2004

I said "in IT" because thats where I work. I don't know if teachers and lawyers and salespeople work the same way, because thats not where I work. I wasn't trying to say it only happens in IT.

Regular poster posting anonymously
Tuesday, May 11, 2004

Herr Herr,

Does your girlfriend have any sisters?

Wisea**
Tuesday, May 11, 2004

Why post anonymously??

I like women. I do. I like good looking women even more. They provide visual candy. That is a good thing.

Having said that, I don't ogle like silly idiot anytime a good looking woman goes by. I also don't fantasize about having sex with anything with breasts and a pulse. I like to think I am more discerning than that.

Sex is easy. Anyone can get laid. It is good sex with a good person that is hard to come by. (no pun intended)

Having said that, a lot of women will complain about undue attention when they don't like a man, and still use their sexual  prowess when they are trying to get favours from men. This reinforce the fact that women are inherently sexual creatures and nothing more. That and this suggestion in society that women are inherently prizes that men compete for means that you will continually be regarded by parts of the male populace as spoils of the war.

Before all you pro-femmes get pissed off with me, how many women will initiate contact/hit on a man that they like?

Tapiwa
Tuesday, May 11, 2004

Women are evil... but damn I like 'em! ;)

I'm sure the sexual toughts and fantasies happen in all environments and from both sex. Hell, I know a lot of my female friends talk and stare as much as I do.

Ps. I've thrown the odd staff member around and it's rarely worked out well afterwards... It's probably better to keep it in your head, but then again, sometimes it's worth those few months of hell that follow ;)

Jack of all
Tuesday, May 11, 2004

Elephant, thanks for the link to Ladder Theory! I'm been telling people and having almost word for word that same conversation!

and it's so damn true...

Jack of all
Tuesday, May 11, 2004

Jack of all and Tapiwa, care to expand?

> Sex is easy. Anyone can get laid ...

> I've thrown the odd staff member around ...

Hey
Tuesday, May 11, 2004


"I'll enjoy a fantasy from time to time, but I don't experience the problem that the OP has mentioned, that of being unable to think of anything else but sex, or being unable to keep from ogling a goodlooking woman."

Yes, but we're referring to men who aren't gay.

Erik Estrada
Wednesday, May 12, 2004

What's there to expand?

As in all things you have to read the moment.

You should ask that question on "JoS - Joel on Scoring"

Jack of all
Wednesday, May 12, 2004

Seemingly many that have contributed have never walked into a predominantly female workplace (as a male).

Simon Lucy
Wednesday, May 12, 2004

Herr Herr, when you get tired send her over to my place. Phone first to make sure my wife is out.


Wednesday, May 12, 2004

Hey, I am saying that anyone can get laid very easily.

A lot of people make it seem like sex  is the be all and end all. It isn't.

Tapiwa
Wednesday, May 12, 2004

Care to share your experience of working in a predominantly female workplace?

T. Norman
Wednesday, May 12, 2004

"Hey, I am saying that anyone can get laid very easily."

For free?  You obviously aren't a real geek and don't know any.

T. Norman
Wednesday, May 12, 2004

"Care to share your experience of working in a predominantly female workplace?"

For free?  What kind of geek do you think I am?

Simon Lucy
Wednesday, May 12, 2004

A real one.

T. Norman
Wednesday, May 12, 2004

Hm...The building where I work has several different companies in it, so just walking down the hall to the men's room brings me past a few other offices.  Eye candy always brightens my day.

anon
Wednesday, May 12, 2004

>I direct you to:

>Ladder Theory!
>http://www.laddertheory.com/

Do you really believe in this draggle?

Sathyaish Chakravarthy
Wednesday, May 12, 2004

Ladder theory as a generalisation is (in my mind) fairly accurate if somewhat overly simplified, but the problem with generalisations is that they're always wrong...

Jack of all
Friday, May 14, 2004

This is an intersting and rather honest post.

I would definetly not call myself a feminist, however any girl in a male dominated field finds herself having to wear a hat that does go against any norms.

My personal thoughts are that women are definetly different then men. There is a saying:
Men and women are equal.

I like to say:
Men and women are equal but different.

The way I resolve a problem is very different to the way a man would. I continually, even subconsiously play on the fact that I am female. In doing so my behaviour can at some times seem even flirty. If I knew that a man was thinking about my underwear color...well I agree with the previous poster, I wouldn't care, unless that guy was creepy or it was causing a problem. We are all human, and sex is a part of life.

I am team leader in a university project. There is about 3 guys in our team who do no work. I made it a goal to get them to work. So far I have got them to do alot of work.  How? I work alongside them, any time they stop working or get distracted I crack an imaginary whip at them. Pretend to be getting cranky at them. We all have a laugh at my antics. I believe one guy said "you are so annoying you don't stop talking and you think it is funny"...however he too was saying this to make me laugh.....My point. A male leader might get away with this behaviour if he were dealing with ten year olds, but I have serious doubts whether he would be able to do the same to a colleague.

Men and women are equal, but different.
ie 4 + 4 = 5 + 3.
Same answer, different equations.

Aussie Chick
Sunday, May 16, 2004

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