Friday, August 31, 2012

What the fuck, world?

I've been feeling diffusely angry and discontent lately. There are many reasons for these feelings, not the least of which is that I'm on a deadline to finish my dissertation by December 6th. 

But today? Today these feelings of  utter despondence with this world were compounded by getting cat-called and harassed twice by male strangers in 3 minutes as I walked home from work today.  As I make the slow trudge home in 90 degree heat-- hungry, needing to pee, and feeling the early pangs of what apparently is some sort of pinched nerve in my lower back-- on two separate occasions, WITHIN THE SPAN OF THREE MINUTES, two different black men think that, likely because I am a black woman, they can express to me their opinion that I am attractive to them in some way. 

The first one walked right up next to me to inform me that I looked "very nice" and then kept calling things after me after I sped up and walked away from him.  The second man is a guy that seems to think we're friends because I walk past him often on my way to and from the subway.  I think this man has often informed me that he "likes my hairstyle" whenever I'm walking to the subway on a Friday night with my hair in it's nice, lesbian-y faux-hawk.  His comments without fail make me annoyed that I can't try to look nice without annoying assholes providing unsolicited commentary.  Today, however, as I walk by, he interrupts his conversation with his fellow loiterers to yell out at me "Hey! Lookin' good girl!" And then, as I refuse to acknowledge that I'm hearing him, "Black girl! Black girl! White girl! White girl! Black girl!" and so on.  I mean, first of all, what?? Second of all, ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME? 

Why is this the kind of bullshit that I have to put up with, most notably on days when I wear a dress or skirt.  I am left significantly more alone if I'm wearing pants.  It didn't matter that I was clearly tired and hot and minding my own business and DO NOT KNOW THESE PEOPLE. I was wearing a skirt and am female and one of few black people in this neighborhood. So of COURSE any other black man in the vicinity has every right to yell at me on the street.


And even before this bullshit happened, I was thinking what I've been thinking a lot lately: Not a single soul on this planet was popped into this world with their consent.  We are all here completely without our own choosing.  None of us had any choice to be born or not. And yet here we all are, plopped out into this crowded, hot mess of humanity, and having to find a way to make it through.  And as we try and try to survive, and do the right thing, and contribute to the world in some way, we are bombarded by idiots and victimized and stolen from and discriminated against.

It fucking sucks guys. And we all deserve better.