Presumably patriarchal present-giving

Nonwithstanding Mrs O’s irritation, Outsider always continues his work while on “holiday” and keeps abreast of any and all shenanigans perpetrated by his young colleagues back in the office.

This week, as Outsider baked himself in the sun of a more Northern state, his newest recruit set out to cover her first event as part of Money Management's proudly, albeit coincidentally, all-female reporting team. As Outsider well knows, journalists are often the willing (sometimes unwilling) recipients of various gifts as a mark of event attendance, and waited with interest to hear what such item would join the office collection.

While the team has decluttered somewhat since its move from the wilds of Chatswood, bottles of wine and jars of jam from the aforementioned events remain, along with the more uncommon and random offerings including a logo-encrusted box of 40 apples (pink ladies, quite suitably), a toy zebra, a cactus, and a large terrarium. When Money Management's editorial tyro returned to the office, Outsider’s colleagues were regaled with an amusing sketch on how the anticipated gift, namely a collection of 26 screwdrivers of varying sizes and varieties, had been presented to event attendees. MM’s junior reported that a kind (male) company representative had profusely apologised for the unintentionally “sexist” gift of screwdrivers at the event where male attendees outnumbered females 8-1. Being of an easy-going nature, Outsider’s newest recruit was not offended by this presumption, and wisely chose to focus on silver linings and feel grateful, rather than misunderstood, to be the owner of two dozen screwdrivers. She is, as it stands, a modern woman. 

Outsider will conclude this tale of ‘presumably patriarchal present-giving’ with an amusing anecdote from another more conservative member of his team who had not been present for the arrival of the screwdrivers. When asked to recall the most unusual or interesting event takeaway received, she responded with “something to do with cars, some sort of pump, perhaps for its tyres”. 

Outsider knows that this particular colleague, who was recently gifted a white Mazda by her beau, at least had a more immediate use for her gift and would find more fault with a woman who did her own dirty work.

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