Written by Dotty Winters


Save the homo vanilla gravitas

White men are* becoming extinct in the boardroom. Break out the bamboo shoots, Dotty Winters has a plan for their repopulation. *They’re not.

small child in executive chair
I must admit I was a little surprised when I heard that Tesco chairman John Allan has announced that white men are becoming an “endangered species” in top business jobs as companies take on more women and ethnic minorities.

As someone who spends a lot of time in boardrooms it didn’t seem to quite chime with my experience, but I knew I must be wrong, because John Allan is a white man of a certain age, and, as we all know, they are the fact-y-est of all the humans. That’s just how science works.

So, I was sitting and pondering why my experience feels so different from the world he was describing, when it struck me: woodlice. White male board members, much like woodlice, must be forced to huddle in the tiny damp places where they are still safe from predation and sunlight. Sure, if you live under a rock it may feel like the whole world is run by white men woodlice, but in the real world they are rarely seen.

As soon as I realised that Mr Allan must be right, and that white men really are endangered, I got to work on my plans to protect this most valuable of species: homo vanilla gravitas. After all, if there is one thing that we must all do in the fight for equality, it is step up and speak out for the rights of white men. Like Mr Allan, I’ve drawn my analogies from the world of wildlife; this is because I am a lady, and I like kittens and leopard print.

Operation Heron

We must immediately create safe spaces for homo vanilla gravitas in boardrooms. Their main natural predators are male pattern baldness and female board members. We can do little about the first of these but we must step in to prevent their relentless destruction by women.

Male board members are delicate and exquisite creatures, like koi carp, so it makes sense that with immediate effect we place pretend plastic businesswomen outside all boardrooms, to prevent real businesswomen from attacking.

“Nothing brings the audiences flocking to zoos quite like the adorable sight of a cuddly board member wrestling with a beach ball – think of the merchandise you could sell.”

Operation Panda

Given how fast numbers of male board members are declining (according to no one John Allan) we can’t simply leave them to their fate. Urgent intervention is required to allow populations of homo vanilla gravitas to recover.

We need to round up any remaining specimens and place them in zoos, where we must all hope and pray that they breed. Sure, they have a pretty terrible track record of breeding in the wild, but we must not be deterred.

If we succeed in creating a breeding programme, then the countries which are most successful can offer baby board-men to other countries, as a gift. Nothing brings the audiences flocking to zoos quite like the adorable sight of a cuddly board member wrestling with a beach ball – think of the merchandise you could sell.

Operation Rhino

We need to get to the root of this problem. Why are female board members so intent on the destruction of homo vanilla gravitas? There must be a reason. I think it is for their shiny suits. Girls love shiny shit.

So, we remove the incentive, by removing the suits. Standard Issue orange jumpsuits should do it. Lots of white men have been vocal in their support of orange jumpsuits, so we know they probably like them. We could ask them, but we don’t want to interrupt them when they might be breeding.

Operation Dogs Trust

Folks, we all need to play our part in this important project. For just £1,500 per month you can adopt a white male board member. In exchange, you’ll get a framed print of your very own board member, regular board reports and 360-degree feedback assessments of their performance and a cuddly toy businessman.

I hope you will find my ideas useful, I commend these recommendations to the board, and will be happy to take your questions. However, I urge you, we must act fast. It is only a matter of time before rich American dentists move in with rifles and cheque books.

And, before you write in, remember, #NotAllHomoVanillaGravitas.


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Written by Dotty Winters

Nascent stand-up, fan of fancy words, purveyor of occasional wrongness, haphazard but enthusiastic parent, science-fan, apprentice-feminist.