On International Women’s Day, we saw social media influencers across the globe advocate that every day be women’s day. I think there’s great sentiment behind that idea, but it seems like a rather abstract and difficult promise to follow through on.
Recognition lies at the heart of this undertaking. We need to acknowledge the role of women in our everyday lives. Maybe the easiest way to do so is to imagine a world in which women didn’t exist.
Conjure up this make-believe world in your mind.
Immediately, you’ll realize a stark difference in this fictional landscape – there are no people! This factor is easily overlooked because most of us don’t wake up every morning reminiscing the good old days when we lived inside a vagina for 9 months.
Aside from the obvious absence of human beings, the world would be missing a lot of key inventions as well.
Let’s begin with something easy – the Toll House tubs of cookie dough you buy at Kroger. There’s virtually no opposition to the gooey insides of a warm chocolate chip cookie.
You can thank Ruth Graves Wakefield, who sold her cookie recipe to Andrew Nestle and received a lifetime supply of Nestle chocolate. Talk about a baller move.
Sadly, in a world without women, you’d have to say goodbye to beer as well, even though it’s almost exclusively marketed towards men. According to a study conducted by Jane Peyton, the earliest brewing practices in Mesopotamia and Sumeria show that women “were the only ones allowed to brew the drink or run any taverns.”
Whether it’s canned or bottled, warm or cold, in a glass or a funnel, men have women to thank for their choice beverage.
Additionally, this world would be void of dishwashers and you’d be forced to wash your dishes by hand, or more likely let them pile up in your sink until they’ve reached the ceiling. Josephine Cochrane created the first reliable hand-powered dishwasher because (gasp!) she didn’t like doing the dishes. Neither do I. Smart lady.
A few other household appliances made by the hands of women includes disposable diapers, ironing boards and paper bags. Forget about your neatly packed sack lunches, crisply ironed button-downs and shit-free lifestyle because in a world without women, these practical objects wouldn’t be accessible.
Moving on to more serious and perhaps life-saving inventions, let’s say you live on the fifth floor of a New York City tenement building and your moronic next-door neighbor caught their pork roast on fire. In a world without women, you’d probably die because Anna Connelly invented the fire escape.
Now, let’s take a look at death scenarios that could occur in water. We all saw the Titanic. Rose gets toted away with 704 lucky survivors to New York with no problem. Without Maria Beasley, who invented the life raft in 1884, Rose would have died alongside Jack on that fated wooden door, which by the way totally could have held them both.
If you were to need surgery in a world without women, that’s too bad because Nobel Prize winner Marie Curie investigated radioactivity, discovered the elements polonium and radium, and was crucial for developing surgical x-rays.
On rainy days, in a world without women you’d be forced to stay at home because Mary Anderson invented the windshield wiper. Thinking about passing the time on said rainy day by playing Monopoly? No can do – Elizabeth Magie created the precursor to Monopoly, “The Landlord’s Game.”
As you can see, a world without women absolutely sucks. No chocolate chip cookies. No fire escapes. No windshield wipers. Thankfully, this made-up world is not reality.
The next time you load up the dishwasher or get an x-ray, let a woman in your life know how much you appreciate her, tampons and all. After all, she did invent beer.