Okay this has been a few days in the writing. Earlier this week I had the unfortunate experience of being talked down to by a misogynist asshole. He told me that “football is too complex a sport for the female mind to understand”. Yes that’s a direct quote, and no I didn’t kick him in the family jewels. (I was tempted, though) It did make me think though – football is a very male-dominated sport. It’s an old boys club and I’m not sure that it’s changing any time soon. I was raised to believe that women can do anything but I’m not sure that it’s true anymore. It’s the vicious loop of experience – it’s impossible to get a job doing what I love – and what I love is football – because I don’t have the experience and my gender is preventing me from getting the experience I apparently need. A lot of football jobs seem to go to former players, and while I enjoy hearing their take on a play, shouldn’t there be a forum for students of the game to show off what they know? I’m sick of the insinuation that the only reason women watch football is to watch the guys in the tight-fitting pants run around the field. While I will admit that this is definitely a bonus, I watch football because to me it is an intellectual exercise. I like trying to figure out what the offense is doing on a play and how the defense will react. I like challenging myself to figure out what alternatives to a play would be. I love the strategy of the game. I found out recently that I really like the behind the scenes stuff too – I got to attend the CFL’s Evaluation Camp (or E-camp as it is known) and I loved watching the college players work so hard towards their goal. You could see so much out of the players – you could tell which ones were willing to work hard for their goal – they were the ones who were still going full-out, play after play never giving less than their best. They were the ones who had the work ethic to make it in professional football or in any other endeavor for that matter. How am I any less qualified to judge that because of my gender? Why is my gender even a factor in 2011? it shouldn’t be but sadly, it is. Women now make up a significant percentage of the viewing audience for football – and not always with their husbands either. I know quite a few couples where only one person is interested in football – the woman. Given the popularity of the sport among women, why are there so few women within the football industry as a whole? Why are there no women amongst the talking heads on TSN or on most all sports radio stations? Are the men afraid we’ll show them up at their own game?