Ben1: Why do men get so defensive about feminism anyway?
Ben2: What do you mean by that?
B2: Is this about that thing?
B1: What thing?
B2: The other day, when I said that thing.
B1: It’s not about the thing.
B2: I’m just saying, if you want to talk about the thing…
B1: See this is just what I’m saying, men get all defensive when you raise this kind of thing…
B2: Well you raised it…
B1: I was just talking in general principles. You made it all about you…
B1: You see what I mean?
B2: You weren’t talking about me?
B1: It’s just a general conversation.
B2: … Okay.
B1: Can I continue?
B2: … I’m sorry. Continue.
B1: So whenever you talk about feminism have you noticed that men get all defensive?
B2: When you say “men”….
B1: Oh now don’t start that.
B2: What am I now?
B1: You’re gonna do that thing.
B2: You said it wasn’t about the thing.
B1: Not that thing. You’re gonna do that “not all men” thing.
B2: Dude that is not even grammatically correct.
B1: No, it’s a thing. An internet thing. You must have seen it.
B2: I haven’t seen it.
B1: It was like, all through facebook.
B2: I didn’t see it.
B1: It was like, every second post on twitter for like eleven days.
B2: I think I missed it.
B2: I think we have different friends.
B1: I don’t think we do.
B2: Is this conversation going to go on much longer?
B1: So the “not all men” thing is when you talk about something men do, and then the person goes “hey not all men do that.”
B2: Not all… is this a trick?
B2: Are you trying to make me say not all men do that.
B1: Do what?
B2: Not all men do the not all men thing. And then you can say “Aha” and it will be one of your point things.
B1: It’s not a point thing.
B2: I hate your point things.
B1: Look, the point is, the… essence is, that when you’re trying to say something about how men as a generality often behave and you (the other you, the responder you) complains and gets the conversation bogged down in the semantics of whether I actually meant each and every man in the world or whether I was just generalising, you derail the discussion…
B2: What, you said this wasn’t about me.
B1: Not you, you. The general “you”.
B2: The general me.
B1: The general “you” derails the discussion.
B2: What’s this derail?
B1: I don’t think we should get into that. Let’s have that talk another time.
B2: You brought it up man…
B1: I’m just, it kind of means, you’re dragging the conversation off topic onto a subject that’s irrelevant.
B2: You mean me, or the general me.
B1: The general you.
B1: That’s the “not all men” thing.
B1: It’s a thing.
B2: It’s an internet thing.
B1: So don’t do it.
B2: Right. You know…
B1: Because people will call you out on it.
B2: You’re gonna call me what?
B1: I… so the defensiveness thing, anyway.
B1: Do you know how sometimes a woman will raise something that bothers her and instead of listening to her, the guy will just hear an attack on himself?
B1: Do you know…
B2: Sometimes…. When people say, it’s not about you, it really is about you.
B2: Like, you know, the other day, when I put up on Facebook about how I hate how grocers sometimes put your fruit in the bag too hard and the fruit gets spoiled.
B1: I don’t remember that.
B2: I put it up on my wall.
B1: I must have missed that.
B2: I was like, when I put it up there, it wasn’t like I put it up about a specific grocer. I put it up as just a general comment about grocers. Like, it’s not about my grocer.
B1: Right, yeah.
B2: The thing is…
B2: The thing is…
B2: It wasn’t a general comment.
B1: It wasn’t…
B2: It wasn’t a general comment. I just *said* it like it was a general comment. “Oh, all grocers are blah de blah”. But it wasn’t a general comment.
B1: So it was…
B2: It was about my grocer.
B2: I just *said* it like it was a general comment. You know. But it was *all* about my grocer, Aaron. He puts the fruit in the bag too hard. It really annoys me.
B2: So sometimes, when you say it’s not about you, it’s really about you.
B1: You’re facebook friends with your grocer?
B1: Then how would he…
B2: It’s… the internet, man. Things get back to people. It’s like…
B2: Don’t… stop… derailing me.
B1: Very good.
B2: See, I listen.
B1: I never said you didn’t.
B2: Well all right.
B1: So where were we?
B2: That I don’t know.
B1: So anyway, going back to the central subject of our discussion…
B2: Of course, please do…
B1: Sometimes… *sometimes*… when you start talking about feminism… some men… *some men* get a little bit defensive. And they don’t realise that it’s not all about them.
B1: You know? You know what I’m trying to say?
B2: … When you said… that it wasn’t about the thing that I said…
B2: And I thought it was about the thing that I said…
B1: That’s it, now you’re getting it. That’s exactly it.
B2: Was it really about the thing I said?
B2: You can be honest.
B1: I have to go.
B2: It was about me.
B1: I really have to go.
B2: You… go.
B1: I really have to go.
B2: Here. Take an apple.
B1: Thank you.