I've just strolled home from watching the Bengaluru Midnight Marathon. I cheered very sincerely for the half and full marathons but the good feelings disappeared in the run up to the women's race.
The tiresome debates on driving, left brain, right brain, who's a better manager, whose role is what will carry on ad nauseam as long as there's a healthy quotient of idiots of both sexes in any forum, but gender-condescension at a sporting event? That fairly takes the breath away!
I thought of many brilliant, cutting things to say on my blog while I stood there swelling with indignation and muttering angrily to my Mom who was watching too, but apart from the fact that I've forgotten most of them, only one thing really needs to be said here. Before flagging off the race, they gave away, with much fanfare, a prize for the most beautiful smile. Right there at the starting line of a marathon, to a group of runners. It was followed by a briefing that seemed to try very hard to stick to words of one syllable, but maybe I was being over-sensitive about that.
The women's race was sponsored by Cisco and if I were them, I would think very carefully about what exactly the message was that I paid large sums of money for.
I don't know if there was a Miss Photogenic prize at the end of the race because I thought it best to leave – if the woman with the mic shrieked "laydeeeze" one more time I'd have felt honour bound to kick her teeth in.
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