Lately, inconsideration and assholism have been spreading rampant through the five boroughs. Yesterday, it was apparently as high as the temperatures.
My job is flexible and wonderful (though they think I'm crazy) and let me work at home so I can do mid-day runs. I work 8-12, run an hour or hour and a half, shower, and am back to work, full of energy (plus I get some miles in the heat, essential for the Vermont 100 Miler). It was hot but I was feeling fairly good, maintaining a rather impressive pace for such heat. I was running in a sports bra and running skirt, thinking about Vermont, Vermont, Vermont, trying to let the stress of work wash away before I returned to it.
Unfortunately, some asshole decided to add to the stress. A kid - really, he was, he couldn't have been much more than 19 - whistled. I stopped, and said, "Why did you do that?" He didn't answer. "Why did you think you should do that? Did you think I would like that?"
Finally he answered. "If you don't get the fuck away from me, I'm going to punch you in the face."
Seeing as he outweighed me by at least 100 pounds, I got the hell away from him (middle fingers extended). As I ran off the Roosevelt Island Bridge, he yelled, "Slutty" at me. So you want me and then when I resist, I'm a slut?
I told the security guards I was threatened and of course, being men, they didn't do anything. (Men sometimes stand up but other times don't. Frustrating. What if it was your daughter who just told you some jerk threatened to punch her in the face?) The rest of my run I was frightened. I kept looking around to see if I saw him. I was SO ANGRY. I was out there, doing my favourite thing in the world, when he had to ruin it. Why? Why? He didn't even know me, why ruin my world, my day, my run?
Later that night, after a fun dinner at our favourite Indian place and the costume swap at the weekly Burner happy hour, Gwendolyn, Wayne and I were leaving, saying goodbye to friends, clutching new garb, trying to decide between a cab and the subway. My friend asked me a question, so I stood chatting with Rebecca for a few minutes when all of the sudden, a large man with a hot dog was pushing Wayne across the sidewalk, yelling at him. I left Rebecca, got in between the two of them, pushing the guy away from Wayne. "Stay away from my boyfriend!" Wayne tried to pull me away, but no one hurts my boy.
Apparently this jerk had told Gwendolyn's breasts, "You've got nice boobs." She replied, "What makes you think I want to hear that?" He said, "You got nice boobs." She said something along the lines of, "You must hate women to disrespect a woman like that." And then Wayne said, "What are you saying to her?" And then the drunk guy punched him but apparently was so drunk his hand barely touched Wayne's cheek. Luckily. This guy, again, was much much bigger than Wayne.
He tried to fight back with Wayne and I wouldn't let him near. Then of course all these Burners come out and everyone is confused and no, we're not drunk, we were just minding our own business. Then this nice pastor passes and apparently he's some famous spiritual leader with a detective son and he calls up his son and promises to have the NYPD over to prevent him from doing anything else.
Shaking, we hail a cab. I'm grateful for the quiet and peace of our home. I'm grateful all of us were safe, though I wish we were really always safe. Safe in our bodies, safe in our minds, safe in our streets.