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Thursday, April 09, 2015

Shit You See & Hear

I have some feminist friends who fight the good fight against cat-calling. Honest, as a 45 year old white man it's sometimes hard to see what the big deal is. I mean, if some woman looked at me like I was a piece of meat, one she'd be happy to eat raw, well, honest, I'd be flattered.

I do understand that women don't generally share this view. They say things like, I'm sure most of these clowns wouldn't rape a woman but there's got to be a percentage who would follow through.

So I was extending my ride home the other night and had crossed well over the line that traditionally divides black and white Kansas City. I was at Linwood and Benton when a guy in a car shouted at me, 'Fuck you faggot!' Okay, you're going to call me on language there, but I'm just reporting what he said, and it gets worse (and stupider): 'I'm gonna fuck you up, nigger!'

Yeah, he said the N word, I know it's considered beyond bad taste, but trust me it's not my fault he didn't know the word 'ofay' or 'honky' which would be more fitting. Anyway, he didn't scare me much because I didn't think he was serious. If he were, I reasoned, I have my pepper spray (I carry that for dogs mostly), and a 2-1/2 lb u-lock which would make a pretty good weapon unless he's got a gun. The fact that I could think of such things tells me he really didn't seem that threatening because in an actual fight or flight situation I don't think that clearly.

But he was offering to mug me basically, in the same way that cat-callers offer to sexually assault pretty women riding bikes (or walking or being alive in some way), and people shouldn't have to live that way, trying to figure out real threats from false ones.

So that's part of what I've heard lately riding my bike to and from work. The photos here are things I've seen. The ASB bridge at magic hour, a great old VW Microbus with an antique 'moonbeam' vanity plate, the sun setting behind the Broadway bridge, sculptures in someone's yard in Rockhill (a neighbor told me she's a famous sculptor but I've forgotten the name).

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