An Atlanta magazine editor has managed, in one place at least, to eliminate the "Men Working" signs that warn of construction:
Public Works officials are replacing 50 "Men Working" with signs that say "Workers Ahead." It will cost $22 to cover over some of the old signs and $144 to buy new signs, said Public Works spokeswoman Valerie Bell-Smith said.
Good, founding editor of Atlanta-based PINK Magazine, a publication that focuses on professional women, said she’s not stopping with Atlanta.
"We’re calling on the rest of the nation to follow suit and make a statement that we will not accept these subtle forms of discrimination," said Good, 48.
Evidently Atlanta doesn’t use "Slow Men Working" signs, or perhaps this editor would have thought twice about the request. Atlanta is in the centre of the region that brought the "gracious" lifestyle to a country motivated for a long time by the "Protestant" work ethic, so the whole concept of warning people that anyone is working deserves some prior examination.
Years ago, at a trade show, I used the term "unmanned" in reference to a booth. The Department of Commerce trade representative gently corrected me with "unwomaned," which meant that both sexes had the equal opportunity to shirk their duties. (She was originally from Knoxville; her father was East Tennessee Scotch-Irish and her mother was French. I’ll bet the biscuit gravy at her house was awesome.)