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Editors Comment: Whistle while you work, the women like it!

Budget Van Insurance head of communications, Emma Maziak believes it is heartening 'that so many women get a lift from being wolf whistled. It is always nice to receive compliments and I for one would be more than happy to smile and wave'.
Editors Comment: Whistle while you work, the women like it!
I JUST couldn't resist this!

After months of banging on about politicians, laws, partnering and many other subjects, I felt you (and me too) needed a bit of light relief.

I had a press release in the other day from Budget Van Insurance about what women think about wolf whistling.

Building sites have changed. If nothing else, because of the fencing and netting which is invariably put up around the construction areas. That is as it should be. I remember many years ago, walking passed a building site and watching in horror as the man in front of me missed being hit by a hammer which had been dropped from several storeys up by inches.

Nevertheless, while we are allowed to view what is going on through observation slits, the workers now don't seem to be able to see out as much as they used to so may be the wolf whistling has to take place during the break time.
Budget interviewed 1,656 women. Almost 50% of them found attention from builders and van drivers flattering. Some 42% said it put them in a good mood and 3% said they became sexually excited. What I found interesting was that 3% (not necessarily the same 3% as before) were so taken with the attention that they went on a date with the man who wolf whistled them. Only 14% of the women questioned did not like the attention, feeling intimidated or angry. Some 80% of women have, at some time or other, been wolf whistled or cat-called by builders or van drivers.

Unsurprisingly, the younger the women the more wolf whistles. Some 86% of women aged between 16 and 24 have experienced it but the percentage dimishes with age. Nevertheless, because older women are wolf whistled less often, when they do receive such vocal male attention they are more likely to be flattered. More than 57% of women between 45 and 54 found it flattering compared with 34% of 16 to 24 year olds. Housewives (this is a very old-fashioned word) loved the attention more than working women with 54% flattered by the attention. Their response to what seems to be a regular occurrence is decidedly positive with 44% laughing in response and 7% responding flirtatiously. Female students are least likely to enjoy the attention with only 39% finding it flattering.

Budget Van also called up a psychologist, Corinne Sweet, who insisted: 'Most (women) can take this primitive, animalistic courtship behaviour in their stride. Modern women are more confident, affluent, educated and powerful and can give as good as they get when it comes to cat-calling men.'

Last word (I know when to keep quite!) goes to Carole Robson, 33, a post office clerk from Hitchin, Herts. She is married to a builder.

She said: ' I think we're all a bit too politically correct these days and there is nothing wrong with a bit of wolf whistling. It always gives me a boost and I hope it continues. I usually laugh in response and sometimes flirt back, usually with a smile but sometimes with a cheeky bottom wiggle!'

Paul Braithwaite, Editor
1 April 2006

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