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Who needs some stupid women’s anything anyway?

The ’60s were my coming of age – and I do remember them. We were invincible, intolerable, in line to change the world and in awe and support of anything that wasn’t the established order.

For most of the decades since then I’ve been working in a male-dominated business, operating in a male-oriented world, living on a male-run planet in what I always believed was a female-created universe.

And the one thing I refused to buy into was a “women’s” anything (shoes don’t count).

Hated those pages in the newspapers I came to edit – and change.

Hated the idea of Rotary Anns and Ladies Auxiliaries.

Why did we need a women’s anything?

And I certainly didn’t need to live or work or play in a female ghetto when the whole world swirled with yin and yang.

So, 35 years later I arrive in southeastern Massachusetts as the new editor of the daily newspaper, to be introduced to the executive director of the Chamber of Commerce.

“We have a women’s division,” said the charmer over lunch. “Perhaps you’d like to speak to them sometime.”

Push my buttons? Guess.

And why in the name of the Mother Goddess, in 1998, in one of the most educated, affluent, semi-urban areas of the United States was there a WOMEN’S group at the Chamber of Commerce?

I privately railed against the concept for years. Until I got to know the women who are a part of it. In those same years, I also came to appreciate the power, the energy, the knowledge and the sheer comfort that comes from a band of sisters.

We’re not a ghetto. We’re a community. Together we can give support and laughter and opportunity and a sense of greater self to one another.

Welcome to woMYnZONE.

It’s a place in print and on the web where we can be our best and worst selves, share advice, enjoy the moment, talk about the future or dish dirt with the best of them.

This is our place and our space. And if you have something to say about anything, anytime, features editor Dana Barbuto and I want to hear from you. And so do thousands of women across Southeastern Massachusetts.

Send us any submissions, suggestions, advice or comments on ANY subject. And let’s get the party started.

Chazy Dowaliby is editor of The Patriot Ledger and The Enterprise.

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