She's A Lady.

I was on my home, along the quiet backstreet and it happened. It’s the first time it has happened and I guess it was inevitable. But it’s happened and it can’t be undone and I don’t know how I feel about out. I was walking along the backstreet past the townhouses that back onto the backstreet. Kicking along in the afternoon sun with my ear buds plugged into Episode 2 of Making Oprah, my favourite podcast this year by far. The end of the episode coincided with me walking past a father hosing the grass next to his driveway. Pause.

Are we still hosing the grass next to the driveway? Is that cool, or should we be more water conscious? Just a thought, I don’t have any grass next to my driveway, I live in apartment with tiny balcony and with some dead succulents on it. Anyway.

He was hosing his front garden, or maybe it’s his back garden, or it could even be just the patch of grass next to his driveway that doesn’t have a specified guardian, so doing his duty of care for the neighbourhood, bless him. My ears had just had the dulcet tones of Oprah Winfrey whispered into them as the podcast wrapped up, there was a brief moment of silence. I seethe hospitable neighbour pass the hose to his sweet little girl who was standing by at the ready and say, ‘now be careful, don’t wet that lady.’ As he looked in my direction and caught my eye under my oversize sunglasses that only cool people and not ladies wear.

LADY!

Excuse me? Am I a lady all of a sudden? I thought I was a cool chick. I wear denim cut offs from One Teaspoon, oversize sunglasses like Nicole Richie and toss my hair up in that undone but it’s totally done look.

Since when, am I a lady? When do you even become a lady? I thought that was what strangers called older looking women. Or 18th Century Royals called the Queen’s besties who helped her into corsets and out of affairs. Am I a lady? I hope not. I mean I’m not short on manners and my British heritage does bring with some old fashion pleasantries but I cough without holding my hand over my mouth at the prospect of being labeled a lady.

What does that mean now, do I have to stop being outrageous and doing Karaoke Spin? Ok to be fair, I haven’t actually done Karaoke Spin yet because I hate Karaoke but I promised myself last week that I would give it a go because I am ‘fun and adventurous’. I don’t feel like ‘lady’ is the right label for me. Sure I drink Earl Grey tea every night and I don’t stay up past 10pm, but I get up at 5am, because the early bird, oh no, there it is.. . that is totally something a ‘lady’ would say.

Up until now I thought person was a good way to reference a stranger, or dude or dudette but perhaps chick is too cruisey, babe is too ballsy, darls is too daring, maybe the girl is actually a great way to refer to a female passer by? There are some labels that I’m just not cool with and I guess I only just realised that ‘Lady’ is one of them. Cute used to be another, but it turns out I am really quite cute so I just got on board with that and actually play it up as a strength rather than a stronghold.

While we are on the topic, its worth mentioning that I can’t stand it when a guy calls me mate, even if he is my mate, but I mate the crap out of my guy friends, and although that sounded oddly sexual, I just mean, I usually refer to my guy mates, as mate or any bloke as mate. Or buddy. Or again, dude.

My gal pals are my babes. Unless we are at a wedding and it’s time to throw the bouquet, then the singles ladies are the single ladies. But there is distinct difference between those ladies, like the ladies who lunch or lawn-bowl a ‘lady’. I’m not a lady.

Media PersonalityMaz Compton