I find the ´sexist´ idea and the need to hide identity a little strange, but not surprising.
Okay, I´m from the very old school of thought where one holds doors open for ladies in shops, restaurants, or other such places where there might be a rush to enter or exit a building. This is not meant to demonstrate superior male strength - I doubt I have much of any of that left on any scale - but simply a reflex action based on courtesy, which I find no bad thing.
I left the UK in ´81 and at that time politeness was still held to be the way to go. However, it seems that after that date, things changed to a point where if one did hold a door for a woman she might just as easily be offended and give one a mouthful of abuse. Why so?
This change is very sad, in my opinion, as it seems to represent a warped idea of equality. I have never felt women to be an inferior gender - in many ways they are far ahead of the male, whose only advantage seems to be that of brute strength. Perhaps I mentioned this here before, so forgive me if I did, but I had a little incident based on this doorway dilemma here in Sapin some weeks ago. I was coming out of a newsagents as a lady tried to enter it; I stepped aside to let her pass and she remarked ´un caballero!´ and went on her merry way. I remarked to the shopkeeper that there didn´t seem to be many around any more and she laughed and said no. The next week, getting the paper, I mentioned the incident to the girl at the counter and told her that in Britain it was now discouraged as being anti-woman to show courtesy, that women were offended by it. She told me that yes, some did say that, even in Spain, but the reality was that they all liked it.
Was she right? Is it all some stupid corruption from some of our over-educated sisters? My wife thinks they are all nuts: why throw away any advantage you might hold?