“I like your T-shirt,” said my neighbour who has distinctly anarcho-communist tendencies...
“Thank you,” I responded, pleased at the attention. I was wearing a rather faded “Occupy Wall Street” T-shirt.
“You do realise that I’m wearing it slightly ironically,” I added. “I used to have an office on Wall Street.” My long faded investment banking days are rarely spoken about these days but it did have a great view across Manhattan from the 42nd floor of number 60 Wall Street.
“Yes but you also have some lefty, radical tendencies,” he responded. I nodded, he was right and that’s the beauty of my “occupy Wall Street” T-shirt – the double meaning.
In days gone past, I would gladly wear T-shirts bearing corporate logos. But these days I stick to garments that shout out my own personal brand rather than one that faceless marketing men have created.
However, there is one T-shirt that I am most proud of and it’s also the one that attracts the most attention. Indeed, the first time I wore it I got three comments – one from my neighbour’s 18 year old daughter; the second from the mother of one of my daughter’s school friends and the third from the septuagenarian lady who lives opposite.
Later that week, it also got me a bit of stick in the pub with my friends.
And what is the T-shirt?
It’s my “This is what a feminist looks like” –shirt
I thought long and hard before buying it. I then thought long and hard about wearing it and finally I decided that I would. Now, the cynical will say it’s because it attracts female attention (of all ages you will note). Whilst that might be a part of the appeal, the real reason is that it speaks most directly and most honestly to who I am and my own values: brand Mrunal, if you will.
I am a feminist and there are three simple reasons for that: Firstly, I am the father of a girl; secondly I am a husband; and thirdly, I am a son. The three women in my life (plus of course my son) are the most important things in my world and I want the best for them. So, of course, I’m a feminist.
I explained this to the old lady who lives opposite when she complemented me on my T-shirt and she got it straight away. She nodded and said, “You don’t have to explain. You should just add one word to the end.”
“What’s that?” I asked.
“This is what a feminist looks like. And?”