If you weren't already familiar with the concept of irony, let freelance writer Lara Sharp's recent experience act as a guide.
Sharp was sat by a pool reading a best-selling book titled, Men Explain Things To Me when she became a victim of mansplaining by a total stranger. Yes, really.
She described on Facebook how a man, around the age of 65, asked her what she was reading, and she told him.
He then, according to Sharp, asked what it was about, and a perfectly polite poolside chat quickly went downhill.
She described their exchange:
Me It's a book about how men explain things to women and...
Him: Oh, so it's a book about men mentoring women!
M: No, not exactly. Not at all, actually... It's actually about how men...
H: What do you do, young lady? Do you work, or do you have kids?
M: Umm, I write.
H: Oh, you're a writer?
M: Well, I write...
H: Who do you write for, young lady? Women's magazines?
M: Umm, no. I write for Myself. And, I'm 47.
H: You're freelance?
H: What genre, young lady?
M: Memoir, mostly.
H: You write about yourself? I guess most women do! What's your book called, young lady?
M: I'm 47. What's my book called? It's called... umm... Facebook. I mean, I really just write on...
H: Are you looking for a man to mentor you?
H: I can really help grow your book. I can help you. As your mentor!
M: You can help me grow my... book? As my... man mentor? This book isn't about that. It's a book about...
H: Absolutely! I'd be happy to mentor you! I'm retired. I've got plenty of time to mentor a young lady.
Sharp asked him if he’d retired from publishing, and he said no, he ran a chain of corner shops that were a family business.
M: So, you spent your life in the family business, owning corner stores, and you didn't even sell magazines, but you can mentor me in the Publishing industry?
H: Well, young lady, selling magazines in a corner store has nothing to do with the Publishing industry. Consider that your first lesson!
M: You're absolutely right. (Holds up 'Men Explain things to Me') And, this is extremely relevant to you. You should read it. Mansplaining is...
H: Oh, no... Thanks, young lady, you can keep your book. I've never been much of a reader...
M: OK, right, not a reader... well, I'm going do some writing now. Because you've mentored me, and it has really inspired me.
H: Fantastic! What are you going to write about?
M: I'm going to write out this entire conversation, from my notes, and to the best of my recollection. I do that a lot. Then, I'm going to put it in my... Facebook... Book.
H: OK, great! Let me know if you need any more of my help!
M: You've already been really helpful. Thanks for mentoring me!
Then, the man allegedly suggested they go to dinner, before advising that she should put a photo of herself in a bikini on the book’s front cover.
He asked her name and she replied:
M: Gloria Steinem.
H: OK, Gloria, call me, I'll take you to dinner! I'm going to think of a new last name for you. Something less Jewish sounding. It'll be better for your career! We can talk about at dinner! Be a good girl, Gloria!