Last night I was at a restaurant/bar, just enjoying the NCAA national championship game with some friends. Everything was going just swimmingly. We found a large booth, got our beers and deep fried cheese curds (yes, they’re as amazing as they sound) and started watching the game.
Not long after I had finished my first beer, my friend next to me gives me a nudge and says that there’s an old guy (probably 55 or so) that keeps staring at me.
I turn to my right, and, sure as shit, there he is just-ah staring away. I quickly look away, hoping that since we made eye contact, he would stop looking at me.
Now, I know what you’re thinking, “C, he’s just looking at you. Don’t be so sensitive!”
I was thinking that too, however, he started looking at me kind of like how starving cartoons look at their cartoon friends and turn them into burgers. All smirky, like they have all the power to pounce on them at any given minute.
I’ll pause so you can finish shuddering, because just the thought of him looking at me like that makes my skin crawl.
After a few more attempts and icy glares towards him, some given while even making eye contact with him, he still didn’t get it.
As if that weren’t bad enough, when I stood up to let my friend out of the booth to go to the bathroom, my other friend at the table said she watched him look me up and down.
I’ll pause again for the shudder…
SERIOUSLY?!?! Why, why, why can’t men take the hint?! If a woman is giving you all the signs to leave her the hell alone, you do it. No questions asked and no ifs, ands or buts.
Not only do I hate this guy for objectifying me and successfully giving me the heebie jeebies, I also hate him because he made me feel uncomfortable and made me, in the 45 minutes that this was happening, not want to be a woman.
I mean, how ridiculous is that?! I can understand if you don’t want to be a woman in certain situations when you’re swimsuit shopping or when you’re on your period, but to not want to be a woman because of the way a man makes you feel, it’s just the most horrible feeling. When I got home last night, I was feeling at the lowest of lows.
I hated that I kept thinking that if I was a man, I could have just sat there drinking beer and enjoying the game with my friends. However, because I’m a woman, and our patriarchal society tells men that they can look at, creep on and treat women any way they want, I sat there wishing I wasn’t one.
A friend said that his type of male gaze was all “just because I was too pretty.” To which I replied that I could give a shit less if he thought I was pretty. Just because you find someone attractive, you don’t have any right to ogle and objectify them, making them feel so uncomfortable to the point where they have to yell at you to leave them alone.
For any person saying that we already have gender equality, I argue that if the power were equal between the sexes, I wouldn’t have sat in that booth last night, wishing I was male, all so that I wouldn’t be made to feel uncomfortable and unsafe.
Until next time,