St. Louis experience brings revelation to independent woman

Alexandra Nicolas - Editor-in-Chief

Alexandra Nicolas – Editor-in-Chief

Alexandra Nicolas

Ladies, I’m ashamed of you.

Admit it, it has happened to all of us, and if it hasn’t, trust me it will.

You get a flat tire and are stranded on the side of the road next to your yellow Volkswagen.

What’s the first response?

To pull your pink Razr phone out of your Kate Spade purse and call one of two people; the nice man at AAA, or your husband, boyfriend, sweetie-pie or some other equally embarrassing nickname. That, my fellow members of the female gender, is pathetic.

If this is how we will treat our liberation as women, then why don’t we just go back to corsets, submissive marriage and having dinner on the table by five.

I recently took a road trip to St. Louis with five other members of The Chart staff for a journalism conference downtown. The six of us took three cars and all drove separately.

As many of us know, MapQuest is not reliable, so while the other two-thirds of the group were at the hotel, my colleague and I ended up in south St. Louis. On top of being mildly unaware of my exact location, it was raining, and to put the cherry on the sundae we got a flat tire.

Minor details aside, I did what I thought any logical person would do, declined assistance from my colleagues at our hotel, and from some good Samaritan (or rapist) who happened to pass by.

I got out of the car, got down in the gutter, in the rain and changed the tire while my colleague called the rest of our party from the passenger seat and muttered about being cold.

We arrived at the hotel, I was soaked, dirty, annoyed and really needed a beverage of a distilled nature, but we got there.

A few days after our return from the trip, I saw one of my colleagues heading out the door.

I asked him where he was going; his wife had a flat and he needed to go change her tire.

Ladies, our predecessors did not fight to get us the right to vote and to break through the glass ceiling for us to pull out our cell phones at the first sign of trouble. Be assertive.

My mother taught me how to change a tire. Thanks, Mom.

If you want to see a real woman, find one who can strip wallpaper, use power tools, change her tires, check her oil, mow her own lawn, knows what a “pump fake” is and still looks great in heels. These are the women we should look up to.

There is no shame in asking for help. After you’ve done everything you can.

If we are informed and educated there is no reason for a woman not to be able to change her own tires, or jump-start a car, or use a map. So ladies, go ask your mom, your dad, your next door neighbor and learn how to change your tires.

Show me a woman who can fix a flat in her Gucci pumps and I’ll show you a world where we have given ourselves equality.

As Rosie the Riveter said, “We Can Do It.”