Something came to my mind while attending a week-long event in the city I work in: people use gendered pronouns for inanimate objects and folks they don’t know. Assumptions are still present among an increasingly diverse and accepting community.
We’ve heard the loch ness monster (or Nessie) referred to as she/her for as long as we can remember, along with boats, airplanes, other big rigs and even bosses in video games.
After some quick Googling to find out why ships are referred to by she/her pronouns, I came across this UK website with the explanation and it’s actually wholesome.
“Although it may sound strange referring to an inanimate object as ‘she,’ this tradition relates to the idea of a female figure such as a mother or goddess guiding and protecting the ship and crew,” the Imperial War Museums (IWM) website reads.
However, IWM notes it can also be attributed to other languages having feminine or masculine nouns.
And while perusing the internet for other answers to these gendered inanimate objects, I’ve come across several explanations that airplanes are oftentimes referred to as “it.” As it should be. Maybe I was wrong.
But can we please start normalizing using they/them pronouns for somebody we don’t know? As I’ve covered in a recent post, more and more folks as of late are identifying as LGBTQ which, in turn, means they may not identify in the binary and may not be comfortable being referred to as she/her or he/him.
Furthermore, it’s in my own hot takes that referring to a group as “guys” is becoming more gender neutral that it’s becoming widely used among people outside the binary as well. However, referring to a group as “folks” or “people” should also become more widely used.
But if you’d like to add more spice to addressing a group, I found this site that has some pretty cool ones (none of them are mine, I take no credit whatsoever):
- Krusty Crew
- Theydies and Gentlethem
Happy knowledge hunting, losers!