Friday, March 12, 2010
(The weather went from iced coffee weather to hot coffee weather in less than 24 hours! BOO!)
Maybe the whole "New Yorkers are mean and negative" idea has some truth to it. Take, for example, my poetry professor. We kept the windows open in class on Wednesday and within ten minutes, heard the sweet bells of the ice cream man's truck.
Me: "Oh my god! The ice cream truck! It sounds like childhood!"
(People around shriek and start smiling in agreement.)
Cynical Poetry Professor: "I just want to throw a brick at that sound."
Me (with pained expression): "Why? Don't you think of those chocolate, Crunch bar popsicles?"
Cynical Poetry Professor (in soft, emo voice---what you would think Edgar Allen Poe might sound like): "No, I think of a creepy, wiry man trying to lure kids near his truck and take them."
(People around start frowning and nodding in agreement.)
New York instigates unexpected transformations in people. And this past week, I've realized that I am making an extremely surprising transformation....into a crazy bitch.
It is accepted that all relationships eventually transcend beyond the "honeymoon" period and that comfortable phase which follows also brings out some ugly parts. Well, that's where New York and I might be right now.
These grimy men huddle outside their shops every morning, yelping cat calls at girls who pass by. Some of them do it alone; others, prefer to do so as a flock. All us girls are just minding our business and trying to get to the subway.
But they don't care. They'll taunt you, ask you lame, rhetorical questions (why are you soooooo beautiful) and then whistle as you walk away. It is sooo incredibly disrespectful and rude.
I talked about this with my neighbor and she said does what most of us do: stick in the iPod headphones and just keep looking forward. Well, a few days ago, I was planning to do just that, but I forgot my iPod at home.
I briskly sauntered down 28th street with naked ears. (I was running a little late for a meeting and had not slept much the night before.) I passed a few men with the usual comments. But instead of ignoring them, I went against probably every spiritual recommendation and let them get to me. Each "holler" infuriated me more and more. So by the time I approached the last group of around 7 men, I was beyond PISSED.
"Good morning, beautiful. Just come say hi," the sleazy leader of the pack yelled. A ripple of deep laughter erupted from his adjacent men.
I kept looking forward. Ignore. Just Ignore. Just like everyday.
Then, he decides to be aggressive, steps in front of his pack, raises his voice, and insists, " I SAID good morning." He grinned condescendingly, revealing mildewy yellow and possibly some gold, teeth.
I'm not sure if it was the lack of sleep, the running late, or my utmost irritation with this daily burden, but I stopped, looked at him, and yelled: "Well, I said, SHUT THE F*** UP!"
Not only have I not heard any more cat calls, but my neighbor told me she doesn't, either!!
One small step for me; one big step for New York girls.