Vive la difference!

A language instructor was explaining to her class that French nouns,
unlike their English counterparts, are grammatically designated as 
masculine or feminine. Things like 'chalk' or 'pencil,' she described, 
would have a gender association although in English these words were 

Puzzled, one student raised his hand and asked, "What gender is a

The teacher wasn't certain which it was, and so divided the class into
two groups and asked them to decide if a computer should be masculine or
feminine. One group was comprised of the women in the class, and the
other, of men. Both groups were asked to give four reasons for their

The group of women concluded that computers should be referred to in the
masculine gender because
1. In order to get their attention, you have to turn them on.
2. They have a lot of data but are still clueless.
3. They are supposed to help you solve your problems, but half the time
   they ARE the problem.
4. As soon as you commit to one, you realize that, if you had waited a
   little longer, you could have had a better model.

The men, on the other hand, decided that computers should definitely be
referred to in the feminine gender because:
1. No one but their creator understands their internal logic.
2. The native language they use to communicate with other computers is
   incomprehensible to everyone else.
3. Even your smallest mistakes are stored in long-term memory for later
4. As soon as you make a commitment to one, you find yourself spending
   half your paycheck on accessories for it.

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