The story starts with the line – “I was a man in the wrong place at the wrong time”. This immediate denial of his part to the proceeding story indicates to me that it must have been a woman’s fault as he essentially excuses all men from blame.
Braidotti when discussing post modernism describes the decline of the modernist hopes as:
“Symptomatic of these changes is urban space, especially in the inner city, which has been cleaned up and refigured through post-industrial metal and Plexiglas buildings, but it is only a veneer that covers up the putrefaction of the industrial space, marking the death of the modernist dream of urban civil society.”
The reader can feel the excitement of the character in visiting a structure that epitomises Braidotti’s description of what marks “the death of the modernist dream of urban civil society.”
This text on the whole, it is felt represents the male as being the all powerful and intelligent and when a man did not fit into this stereotype, he was then referred to as girl (whimpering like a schoolgirl) thus demeaning woman.
There were strong elements of male bravado, for example when the cabbie assumes that the problem Rick is dealing with must be “Girl Trouble” and his friend that picks him up(essentially saves him) had just spent the night with a glamour model. Also when Rick states that he “handed the driver two hundred quid from the wallet” gives the impression that even though he is unemployed he is still able to splash out great sums of money just to run a red light.
I feel this story further cements Braidotti’s view that there is an “ongoing struggle with language to produce affirmative representations of women” and in this short story females are degraded by consistently being referred to as:
1. Girls and not woman
2. Objects of desire - gorgeous Greek girl or mischievous little housewife or She had a spot on her chin the size of a dung beetle thus rendering her unattractive.
Even when he lands the job at the end, there is no reference to the Alexis being responsible for his good fortune, just a reference to her bedroom eyes, subjugating woman further.
With regards to visual imagery of women, the only image of a woman is that of a naked slim woman, which it is felt, was totally unnecessary.