Some of us have been watching with interest the sex strike story unfold. To recap, American actress, Alyssa Milano, has suggested that women follow her lead and go on a sex strike as a response to new abortion legislation (something to do with reclaiming our reproductive rights).
Since Friday, when she first tweeted the call to shutdown, thousands of women have pledged their support, including Bette Midler, and now everyone is gripped and asking questions including: Is a sex strike a thing?
Is it a bit unfair on the men involved? Who is having enough sex to know that a sex strike is in process? And might a sex strike be a bit of a wasted gesture if the consequence is business as usual?
Meanwhile, the concept of an intra marital strike has got us thinking about strikes on the domestic front in general.
Withdrawing other perks that are taken for granted could prove highly effective, if you wanted to punish the man of the house and make him realise what He was missing (no idea why it's come to this, but let's run with it). Off the top of our head these strikes might include:
1. A cheese strike
Or a strike on buying delicious foods and essential items in general. It is Us that ensures there is a chunk of Gouda in the fridge at all times. It is Us that gets in the stocks of loo paper and the fresh dates (man chocolate substitute…must be mejodol). Without our intelligent shopping they would be starving and at the same time fat.
As it is, thanks to our careful planning there are no Doritos in the house any more, no chorizo (a tip gleaned from Boris's new lady: that is why he has slimmed down! Full chorizo ban). The negroni ingredients have run low – no accident that – similarly the Choco Leibniz, full fat Greek yogurt, dips, all have gone and been replaced with slightly challenging nuts.
2. Your mother's birthday-prompt strike - and the rest
Sister's. Godchildren's. Best friend's moment of glory, you name it - without our constant vigilance they would be known as the Couldn't Care Less One. Their own childrens' important life events, exactly the same. They know not what stage they are at: Year Four? Year Eight? Where do they live exactly? Are they 21-ish or more like 23? If we were to strike they would definitely miss their own daughter's graduation.
'Going on a sex strike is a facile new low for these narcissistic young feminists'
3. Packing reminder strike
E.g. Us asking, the night before the holiday, 'Have you packed swimming trunks?' Answer 'Not yet, I'm about to' (code for 'Ohmigod that was a close thing'). The only trouble is that if we strike on packing reminding that's the first day of the hols gone, wasted shopping for flip flops, sunglasses, shorts, and the like.
4. Kitchen superviser strike
When He cooks, you need at least you, ideally plus one another person, on wingman duties such as checking ingredients (you do know that's lemon squash in that bottle don't you?); gas power (default setting Vengeful Dragon); timings (did you put it in when the big hand was straight up, do you think); amounts (not tablespoon, teaspoon! Jesus, it's nutmeg, what is wrong with you…?) and so on.
5. Dealing with the handyman/builder strike
Now that strike would finish them off. Any man would rather take directions from a stranger than attempt to communicate with the builder and or handyman. Very strange dynamic to witness this one: is it guilt plus fear, or total absence of common ground plus fear? It always starts with arms folded legs apart and the sort of tight-jawed expression defence secretaries assume when first encountering troops in the field.
6. Booking holidays strike
Arguably might not get there at all. Certainly there would be an EasyJet luggage penalty involved. A car hire fiasco. An air b and b that turned out to be more a b and b with no AC. Horrible
All of these seem to have significant negative repercussions for Us. On reflection the sex ban would be safest.