in dc: ain’t no holla back girl
This is probably something that belongs on Holla Back DC!. After walking around the city and enjoying the amazing weather, James and I were headed back to the metro through Thomas Circle. It was just past 5pm and even though it was nice outside, the impending sunset* on a school night is the signal for me to head home.
We’d just made it past the first “spoke” preparing to cross M Street. There was a woman, by herself, talking on her cell phone also waiting to cross. While waiting for the light to cross, a van–maintenance or delivery, I can’t recall–pulled into the crosswalk and rolled down the driver-side window. The driver was grinning madly at the woman and we’d just gotten close enough to hear the exchange:
Him: You’re so pretty, you made me stop.
Her: In the middle of the crosswalk?! (We had the light by this time)
So the three of us walked around behind the van and kept on going. And I know there’s still the issue of a lack of respect and that street harassment is a big problem, but it was impossible not to laugh. The woman was laughing too when she related what the guy said to James, finishing with “I tell you, it’s hard for a straight girl out here!”
Shaw Girl and I were discussing this over brunch one day. We need to locate… for lack of a better term, Catcaller Zero. We need to find that guy that started randomly hollerin’ at/talking to women on the street and was either so successful, or told people that he was successful that it snowballed this mess we got nowadays. I think he’s just an urban legend, but it might help if he’d come clean because everything I’ve seen indicates a zero success rate for randomly shouting at women on the street or from within traffic.**
Even so, what did that guy in the van–or any of these other men–think was going to happen? She would be so smitten by his blocking pedestrian traffic just to say hello that she’d hand over her number? Hop into the van? What? And I don’t accept that this guy was hollerin’ just to holla as he was clearly waiting for a response. Gotta think out that next move, man. Just sayin’! 🙄
* Which I still hate that it shows up at 5:30p now.
** You straight guys should take a tip from the gays, we’re all about the furtive eye contact and subtle body language. Give us some fans and it’d be straight up Dangerous Liaisons on 17th Street.