Monthly Archives: May 2010

“Looking good on that bike.”

I was sitting on my bike at the intersection of M & 23, waiting for the light to change. A tall man dressed in a blue suit holding an expandable file-folder walked up to the curb on my right, stopping about two feet from me – “Looking good on that bike, that’s right, you sit back and get tan on that seat,” is what the upstanding middle-age man said to me. When I didn’t respond, he stooped closer to me and said, “Goddamn chinc” (I’m an adopted American-Korean) and then strolled across the street, staring at me the entire time. I didn’t say anything – I didn’t know what to say.

Submitted by CMB on 5/26/2010

Location: M & 23

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Upskirting at Courthouse Metro

Photo taken by Erica

Yesterday this happened:

Today, as I was emerging from the Court House Metro Station, a man got uncomfortably close behind me on the escalator. I had headphones on, but even so, I heard the familiar fake shutter-click of an obnoxious phone camera, then felt the unmistakable grab of a stranger’s hand under my skirt. I turned around (we were at the top of the escalator now), yelled “WHAT DID YOU DO? WHO THE HELL DO YOU THINK YOU ARE? THIS ASSHOLE JUST TOOK A PICTURE UP MY SKIRT AND GRABBED ME!” as loudly as I could. He tried to push past me and I hit him as hard as I could in the shoulder (he was a big guy, he barely felt it). He smiled that horrible-dude “I can do whatever I want” smile and leisurely jogged away, holding his phone. I was crying at this point, just feeling powerless and awful. There were tons of people around since this was at 8:30 AM in Arlington. No one even looked up as I was yelling at him that I could tell, but I don’t know what I would do in that situation either. A nicely dressed older woman walked past me, and I said through my tears “That person just took a picture up my skirt and grabbed me, what should I do?” and she shook her head and walked on. I sat on a bench and cried for a while, got a cup of coffee, called my sister, and went to work.

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“sexy, sexy mama”

My friend and I were walking to the Dupont Metro Station last weekend. It was around 6 PM, while the sun was still out.

Before we approached the station, we came across two men (on bicycles). They had just turned on to the same street and headed in our direction. After a few seconds of sharing a sidewalk with them, I heard comments, “sexy, sexy mama”. Immediately, I became irritated. I couldn’t believe this was happening to us!

I turned around and saw two men (around their early 20s) and said, “Shut the fuck up”.

One man replied, “Are you talking to me?”

“Yes, I’m talking to you! If you don’t leave us alone, I will take out my pepper spray and use it on you – you fucking moron!”

We were left alone after I confronted them.

During this 5 minute altercation, no one around us had said anything. People continued on with their activities, as if this was normal! It was rude and another reason why, women in DC should carry something with them. For me – I never walk out of my house w/o pepper spray. We are not fucking meat here!

Submitted by I hate DC Pigs on 5/26/2010

Do you have a personal experience with gender-based public sexual harassment or assault you would like to submit? Just click here and fill out the online submission form. All submissions are posted anonymously unless you specify.

“You can’t smile and answer me?”

Photo by infomofo via flickr

As I was walking home the other day after parking my car near my apartment, I passed two men walking the opposite direction on the sidewalk. One of them looked me up and down and then said, “Hi, baby. How are you?”

I ignored him and just kept walking past, at which he stopped, turned around, and said, “What? You can’t smile and answer me?”

Automatically, without thinking, I turned around, smiled, and said “Hi. I’m good, thanks.” I turned back and continued home.

I know that my harasser didn’t say anything graphic or explicit or hurtful, but I was furious at myself for giving in, for letting him dictate my response. I hate that I am so conditioned to do what I’m told. There’s no reason that I should’ve responded — and there’s no reason that he should have felt entitled to a response.

Submitted by Salem on 5/26/2010

Location: M St NW, between 11th & 12th Sts

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“Thick and juicy like a cheeseburger.”

Photo by stu_spivack on flickr

Photo by stu_spivack on flickr

I was walking to Target this afternoon and a homeless man walked up to me, blocking my path. He told me he wanted to eat me up. He said, “Girl, you thick and juicy like a cheeseburger.”

Then he did some kind of bizarre dance, presumably to charm me into allowing him to eat me up. I managed to cross the street without having to confront the crazy, but not before this guy called out, “I’ma eat you up! I’ma take a bite outta that juicy ass!”

Submitted by Moxie Britches on 5/25/2010

Location: 14th Street & Park Road, Columbia Heights

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Goethe Institut Harasser

This weekend, I experienced the most abusive verbal street harassment of my life. I was walking with my sister in Chinatown to get coffee, and a man who appeared to be homeless was sitting in front of the Goethe Institut and asked us for money. I very politely apologized and said that I didn’t have anything to give him (which was true- I very rarely carry cash). We continued walking, and the man glared at us and said, “You won’t give a white guy money, but you’ll spread your ass cheeks and bend over and let some coon stick it to you.” My sister and I were shocked. We turned around, mouths wide open, and I said, “Excuse me, that is not OK.” We continued walking, and the man shouted after us, “I hope you choke on a coon dick.”

My sister and I were both incredibly shaken by this extremely violent and racist attack, and we kept walking in hopes of finding a police officer, but none were there (which is rare in that area). After we had gotten our coffee, we started walking back. We were going to bypass the guy to avoid any trouble, but we saw someone about to leave him some leftovers. I quietly said to the guy, “Excuse me, I know you are trying to help, but I think you should know what this man just said to my sister and I.” The man looked as shocked as we had been, took his food, and said, “Man, you can’t talk to women like that.” As we walked by, my sister tried to subtly take a picture of the harasser with her phone. He got really angry and started to get up and come towards us. We quickly ran across the street, where I called the police.
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“Not today.”

Photo by the TruthAbout... via flickr

My husband and I were walking to the ATM and this man was seated outside the Goethe Institute begging. We were crossing the street and he asked us for a handout. My husband replied “Not today” and we continued waiting to cross the street.

He then shouted at us that we would have given “him money if he was a n*****” (the man was white). Not one to tolerate such language, I turned around and told him he’d better watch his language and that I would certainly never go out of my way to help anyone who was so blatantly racist. He then called me a c*** and told my husband to “Put his b**** on a leash”. The light had changed by this point so we crossed the street to the bank. It was only once we were over there that I noticed he had a t-shirt on that read “Ladies show me your t***”. A true charmer. If you see him, definitely don’t give him money!

Submitted by anonymous on 5/23/2010

Location: 7th and I

Do you have a personal experience with gender-based public sexual harassment or assault you would like to submit? Just click here and fill out the online submission form. All submissions are posted anonymously unless you specify.