February 2, 2018

The Framework Project Interviews Jenn Schiffer

Jesus Christ, this interview with Jenn Schiffer is fantastic. I wish I could just quote the whole thing, but this paragraph should pique your interest:

So how do we be seen as good at our job while also doing some emotional labor in order to make sure that the people who look up to us or could look up to us have an easier path than we did? I saw this a lot when I was in university, where my professors, especially the women professors, were very tough on me. And I saw that they were trying to groom me to have a thicker skin and stuff, and in retrospect it’s like, “Oh, I appreciate that you were that tough on me because things were tough for you, but wouldn’t it be great to break that cycle? And how do we do that?”

OK, maybe one more:

We were talking at lunch about the Pepsi commercial. People were complaining like, “Yeah, the commercial sucked,” and they were drinking Pepsi. And I’m just like—we have Coke—and I’m just drinking my Coke like, “Oh, yeah, sure, yeah.”

Sorry, I can’t stop. I want to be Jenn Schiffer when I grow up…

I had this frustrating meeting yesterday with a bunch of New York City JavaScript meetup organizers I had never met. And they were saying, “Oh, your meetups are great! How do we collaborate?” But I had mentioned how one of the meetups didn’t have a code of conduct, and I was like, “You need to have something in place whenever,” and he was like, “Oh, they’re so negative, though.” And I’m like, “You know what else is negative? Being harassed at a tech meetup.” It was just a really frustrating meeting where I felt like I had to explain myself, and it’s like, “You brought me here to give you advice. I’m giving you advice, and you’re fighting me on it, and I have the experience, and you don’t. So what is the point here? Was the point just to bring a few women”—because a few of my collaborators are women—“a few women in here to make you all feel better about yourselves? Because it’s not going to happen.” It was just a huge waste of my Monday, and so I’ve just been in this mood and then during lunch, I was like, “Ugh.” And then Anil came and was like, “What’s up?” And I’m like, “Ugh! Just had the full dose of the white male experience,” which everyone has who’s not a white male. Ugh, the fucking code of conduct discussion all the time. And then I went on that guy’s meetup site, and there’s a code of conduct on there—he doesn’t—ugh, God. What a world.