15 things that go through my mind when catcalled
1. Oh Christ I’ve been spotted. All hopes of inconspicuously going about my day have been shattered. I had been under the illusion that I was a normal human, capable of living my life unnoticed by other humans. Oh god. Dream world gone. Hello reality. We meet again.
2. Can I pretend it didn’t happen? Can I just keep walking and hope he doesn’t follow it up? Probably not. I am blushing profusely.
3. Oh god he might think I’m blushing because I feel flattered. I’m not sure why I’m blushing but it’s definitely not in a giggly happy way. It’s in an ‘I want the floor to eat me and spit me back out in Mongolia’ kind of way
4.So he must know I’ve heard him. Do I acknowledge it to him or ignore him entirely? I don’t want to seem rude but I don’t know what to say
5. Maybe I should be rude. I didn’t ask for this and it’s stressing me out. I wouldn’t ordinarily ignore a person but maybe if they make you feel like this it’s ok?
6. But maybe it’s a compliment? Maybe I should be thanking him because he’s technically paid me a compliment.
7. If I thank him is that an invitation to follow this up? That would NOT be ok.
8. Why am I considering thanking a person for making me worry like this? Intended compliment or not I feel panicky and I shouldn’t have to thank someone for that.
9. Why do I feel panicky? It’s just one comment. Why can’t I just let it go and get on with my day?
10. I feel panicky because that guy doesn’t know I’m studying for a degree and that I play 8 instruments and that I try my best to make other people happy. He’s decided how worthwhile I am based on whether I’m sexually desirable or not.
11. Will everyone do that? Maybe it doesn’t matter how hard I work. What if I’m not desirable enough? Will I have fewer opportunities?
12. God it might be sarcastic. He might be able to see that I didn’t brush my hair this morning and I’m wearing my baggiest shirt. He’s probably trying to make me feel bad.
13. Holy Crap. It might not even be meant for me. How self-centred of me to think that that comment was definitely meant for me! I was pretty sure it was for me, I didn’t see anyone else, but what if it wasn’t?! That’s so arrogant of me! I’m a terrible human being
14. I’ve taken way too long to respond. I have to decide now. The moment’s probably gone for a witty retort but there’s still time to thank him for his comment if that’s what I wanted to do. Maybe I should leave it. Or maybe I should apologise for taking so long? I’m not sure why that warrants an apology, but maybe it’s better than saying nothing at all.
15. Maybe I shouldn’t wear these jeans next time. They’re clearly asking for trouble.