Social Question

SmashTheState's avatar

Do I look crazed, rapey, or dangerous?

Asked by SmashTheState (14220points) September 25th, 2015

Last night I was walking down the street and there was a young woman ahead of me in a dress. I tried to ask her for the time, saying “excuse me,” several times and she just kept walking. I thought perhaps she didn’t realize I was talking to her, so I raised my voice and said, “hello, yes, excuse me, I’m talking to you.” In reaction, without turning around, she pulled out her keys and her pepper spray. Then she continued walking without turning around or saying a word.

I’ve never had anyone pull pepper spray on me before just for talking to them. Here is a recent photo of me from a newspaper article. I was furious at the time this happened, but I’m inclined to give her the benefit of the doubt. Tell me honestly, do I look especially scary or unhinged?

Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

130 Answers

jca's avatar

I don’t think you look scary or unhinged. Maybe she was paranoid for some reason, for example she recently suffered some trauma.

jca's avatar

Maybe also because most people have cell phones where they no longer need someone to tell them the time, she thought you were up to something else. I know for myself, I always carry a cell phone but sometimes it’s dead, and then I have no clue what time it is. When I have to ask someone “do you have the time?” I realize that it’s such an unusual question now, I think it even affected sales of watches, because most people already carry a time piece with them (their phone).

zenvelo's avatar

At night? On the street, trying to get the attention of a young woman walking ahead of you, and being persistent?

I think she reacted in a way that all the slut shaming, “she asked for it”, “legitimate rape”, religious right men would say is the only proper way to react.

canidmajor's avatar

You have said in the past that you are large. A large man, asking such an innocuous question, at night, with no one else around, is a fear-trigger for many women. It doesn’t matter if you look “crazed, rapey, or dangerous”, you could be.
You probably scared the crap out of her. Not at all your fault, just a sad confluence of circumstances.

longgone's avatar

If it was dark, your appearance is almost irrelevant. Anyone calling out and, especially, walking behind me can creep me out, it’s nothing personal. It’s a very primitive response, I feel fearful without logically seeing any danger. That makes a lot of sense, actually. The cavemen who protected themselves only if a potential threat looked dangerous probably did not get to reproduce.

If I saw you on the street during daytime, I would not consider you threatening at all. At night, I might be more likely to be afraid of you because you appear to be tall. If your voice is deep, that’s another thing which will make me more likely to be wary.

In the future, if you are ever in a similar situation, one thing which may work is to be more up-front. “Excuse me, what’s the time?” Also, crossing the street and getting into the other person’s line of sight will help.

chyna's avatar

Ted Bundy didn’t look crazed but he was. You don’t look crazed either.
But as a woman, I would not feel comfortable with a man behind me that kept saying excuse me at night with no one else around. Most women are taught at a young age to be aware of their surroundings and wary of strangers.

Stinley's avatar

Women have been conditioned to be scared of all men, especially while walking alone at night

ragingloli's avatar

The answer is yes, you look dangerous.
Large, massive beard, and wearing what looks like a tactical vest.
At night.

LuckyGuy's avatar

At night on a dark street I’d be secretly reaching for an equalizer, too.

She is already on high alert. She knows that an altercation can easily start with just such an “introduction”. Her private space was already violated by your insistence.

Ideally people should be able to walk undisturbed enjoying their own thoughts. Sadly most cannot.

cazzie's avatar

I think you look rather trendy. If I had been you, though, I wouldn’t have yelled louder after being ignored. That was her problem, not yours, but you may have scared her more. People are weird.

DoNotKnow's avatar

What does someone who is “crazed, rapey, or dangerous” look like?

And do you really think she acted unreasonably? Sounds completely reasonable to me, given the circumstances you described.

Cruiser's avatar

I will say that in most cases except for the very extreme looks do not matter and your appearance IMHO do not cross the line to being visually threatening….but by the fact that you had to qualify the woman ahead of you as wearing a dress to me puts you firmly in the lecherous man category and by her reaction this woman clearly picked up your vibe.

majorrich's avatar

She probably didn’t expect Hagrid to be right there with his epic beard and all. In the daytime no worries. At night she probably only thought b.b.b.big

rojo's avatar

Well, not sure I can judge but I can say you do not fit the norm where I live here in central Texas.

syz's avatar

For me, some interactions on the street with men start with an innocuous question that then turns quickly to sexual harassment and frightening experiences.

Real life example: “Miss, do you know what time it is?” I answer. “Hey, hey, you’re a pretty girl. Come have a drink with me?” No, thank you. “Come on, you gonna blow me off like that?” Please, leave me alone. ”Bitch! You cunt! Fuckin think you all that! FUCK YOU, BITCH!” All this while following me down the street, gesticulating wildly.

It doesn’t take long before you start to fear any interaction with a male stranger on the street.

SmashTheState's avatar

@Cruiser I’m asexual and aromantic. I’ve never felt sexual attraction to anyone. I never will. The reason I mentioned her dress is I thought it might contribute to why she might have felt vulnerable. She was wearing a very short minidress, presumably on her way to a night out or on her way back from one. And while a woman should be able to wear anything or nothing at all and walk down the street in perfect safety, I have enough empathy to see why it might be a contributing factor to her reaction.

Cruiser's avatar

Well then dress or no dress, next time you need to know the time try asking without using the bull horn.~

SmashTheState's avatar

@syz And do you think that our social interactions should all, then, be predicated on the worst examplars we’ve ever experienced? That our lives should be governed by fear and hostility? That common decency should be replaced with squinty-eyed suspicion and profiling on the basis of the worst stereotypes promulgated by Hollywood and the corporate media?

PS: @cazzie Trendy? You know how to hurt a man.

Haleth's avatar

@SmashTheState It doesn’t matter if you’re asexual or aromantic. Your looks don’t matter either. It was all your behavior. When she kept ignoring you and you raised your voice, you set off alarm bells.

Like, if you’re a woman walking alone in the dark, any strange guy is potentially a source of danger. An unknown, rude, pushy guy is like, Oh hell no! Stranger danger!

cazzie's avatar

@SmashTheState well, the kids here are going for that ‘Brooklyn Hipster’ look. You’ve a natural look for it. The hat, the pipe, the beard, the vest. Sorry, it reminds me of the hipster kids around here. I initially read the ‘aromantic’ as ‘aromatic’ and laughed. Sorry, I think it was the pipe. Also, the girl doesn’t know those details about you not being a predator. It comes from our most basic of brain areas. She only sees an above average in size guy. That’s enough for most women alone at night.

SmashTheState's avatar

@Haleth I just read the article you linked. Do you see that this is a recipe for perpetual victimhood? Either I must accept that any woman I ask for the time has the right to expect I’m a rapist and react with cold, fearful hostility, or I must refuse to ever again interact with a woman to whom I’m not related by blood – and stand accused of misogyny. In this way, women can paint themselves as put-upon victims who are either being daily assaulted by the micro-aggressive time-askings of rapey, bearded strangers or being frozen out of social acceptance by woman-hating equal-but-separate sexual apartheidists.

canidmajor's avatar

@SmashTheState: ”@syz And do you think that our social interactions should all, then, be predicated on the worst examplars we’ve ever experienced? That our lives should be governed by fear and hostility?”
@syz gave you a real life example, not a Hollywood or corporate media example. An example of the type I used to experience fairly often, and I imagine that most women experience from time to time.

It surprises me a lot that you, of all people, fall back on the classic examples given by those who enjoy the benefits of white male privilege. You are usually much more sensitive to the differences of status and behaviors and privileges that go with different social types, be they wealthy, poor, white, non-white or variously gendered.

You were very mildly inconvenienced.

She was terrified.

keobooks's avatar

I think you look like Silent Bob all grown up. I don’t think you look at all threatening. But I knowmany women get scared at night walking alone in the city.What’s sad is that they don’t realize that pretending to be deaf and walking faster show that you are scared. When you show that you’re scared, you’re more likely to be a target of a mugging or other crime.

As a woman who has lived in some of the roughest parts of the Mission district and worked in the Tenderloin, I would have had my guard up, but not because you look scary. But I’d make sure you didn’t know that. I would have either quickly checked the time and told you, or if I had no access to my watch or phone I would have said “Time for both of us to get a watch!”

Depending on the layout or circumstances, I would have kept on walking at my usual pace. If I hadn’t just spoken to you, I’d probably have slowed down and let you pass me, and I’d nod and maybe smile. I’d rather have the stranger in front of me than behind me. Also, by slowing down to let you pass, I’m showing I’m not at all nervous, but I’m not clueless. Usually that combo makes you a bad mugging target.

The only reason I might not slow down to let you pass is that I just spoke to you, and you might see my slowing down as an invitation to strike up a conversation. Your might be ok, but at night alone, you might be one of those crazy people who walk around the city all night, looking for people to share your crazy stori s with. Once thos people latch onto you. You can never get rid of them. And sometimes, they get violent when they realize that you’re trying to get into your building or otherwise don’t want to talk to them anymore.

I had pepper spray, but only used it once—on myself because I was stupid and wanted to see how bad it really was. It was so horrible that I decided to only use it if someone actually touched me or blocked me from going forward while being threatening.

DoNotKnow's avatar

@SmashTheState – You seem to be surprised that women feel unsafe while walking alone at night and would not want to interact with some stranger. You’re not a young kid, so I’m surprised you’re just learning about this now.

But now that you know, you seeem to be pushing back and saying that the fear is unjustified. Are you really saying that the calculations women have to go through when evaluating risk is incorrect and therefore should be abandoned? What is the correct level of caution that a woman in that scenario should have exercised? And is this analysis based on pure ideology – or is this emperically based?

jca's avatar

@SmashTheState: One thing not clear in your posts is how close you were to the woman. Were you close enough that you could touch her? Because then, if it were me, I’d be nervous, too. If you were far enough away, like 20 feet, that would not make me nervous. As I’m sure you know, there are various distances that are appropriate, depending on whether or not you know someone and how close you are emotionally. The distance I stand when I talk to my boss is different than the distance I stand when I speak to a stranger in the street.

SmashTheState's avatar

@canidmajor You know, this reminds me of a situation which occured a few years ago when I was organizing the Ottawa Panhandlers’ Union. We’d won a lawsuit and had a bunch of money, and wanted to open our own storefront. There was an anarchist infoshop which had run out of money and were going to have to close. We, the OPU, thought it would be good for everyone concerned for us to work together; we could bankroll the space, they would provide the volunteers to staff the place, and we could share the space to everyone’s benefit.

The problems started when the infoshop informed me every member of the OPU would be required to sign a safe space and anti-oppression statement which said, more or less, that we agree to examine our privilege and work on eliminating the benefits we derive therefrom. Now, on the surface this looks fine. From the perspective of a white, middle-class college radical. But see, these white, middle-class college radicals are telling a bunch of mostly homeless, substance-addicted beggars with mental health issues that they must examine their privilege. One of our members was a homeless, native, openly transgender, meth-addicted, HIV-positive sex trade worker. How much privilege do you think she has? I tried to explain to the infoshop people how our people were likely to react to being told to ”check their privilege” by a bunch of middle-class leftists, and all I got was cold stares.

As I predicted, our people did not react well. There was quite a bit of ”what the fuck“ing and such from people who were not au fait with the niceties of feminist theory and campus identity politics. In the end, the infoshop chose not to exist at all rather than partner with us.

@DoNotKnow I’m not surprised that a woman might react that way. But I am annoyed. Creating a culture based on weakness and victimization is everything which is wrong with leftist politics. Peace is not and has never been maintained by weakness. It is maintained by strength. If women are being systematically raped and murdered, the solution is not to make all women paranoid and suspicious of men; the solution is to arm every woman sufficiently to make them unafraid to talk to a stranger on the street.

This is far from the first time this particular conflict has had a negative effect on my life and the lives of people I care about. As an organizer working with the street, I find myself in constant conflict with women and women’s groups who want cameras and floodlights everywhere. In Ottawa, for example, several city parks had cameras, floodlights, and speakers installed, monitored 24/7. If they saw someone who looked homeless, they would activate the speakers and say, “Leave the park now. Police have been called.” Because, you see, we’re the scary stranger danger that these nice middle class women don’t want to have in their parks. Our existence is a threat to them because we have tattoos and bad teeth and beards and don’t wear suits and ties.

I understand that women do get raped and assaulted and murdered, and that shouldn’t happen. But I also refuse to get into a victimization auction where I have to prove that my victimization is worse than your victimization. I’ve spent my entire life refusing to be a victim and teaching others how not to be victims either. Contrary to popular belief, you do not have the right to not feel threatened. You have the right not to be harmed. How you feel is a matter of supreme indifference to me. If you happen to find the sight of poor people – or blacks, or homosexuals, or Jews – threatening, then feel free to wear a blindfold. You don’t get to make my existence anathema because you don’t want to see me.

SmashTheState's avatar

@jca I was perhaps six to eight feet behind her. And because I’m not a complete cro-magnon and aware that I’m a large, bearded man, I was making sure to make enough noise that she could hear me there so as not to surprise her or look like I was sneaking up on her. I’m used to people – male or female – being nervous around me. But this is the first time that someone not only refused to even acknowledge I existed, but pulled out a weapon.

DoNotKnow's avatar

@SmashTheState – I urge you to drop the political idealism for just a moment and answer the question. You are this woman, walking home and you make some internal assessment of your safety. Some voice behind you attempts to talk to you, and then when you do not, he raises his voice (or at least makes a “I’m talking to you” comment). Can you not see how she may have felt less-than-safe, and made the decision she did to protect herself?

That woman is not a political movement. She’s a person who just wants to get where she’s going without getting assaulted, raped, or bullied by someone who should know better.

josie's avatar

Seems like you were being overly persistent to get something like the time of day.

If some dude started repeatedly asking me what time is it, I would think he might be crazy.
That wouldn’t scare me but it might make a lone female, at night, nervous
I bet this was a test, and she failed the test

SmashTheState's avatar

@DoNotKnow And this reaction, writ large, becomes the current fear-based police state in which we are all forced to live. Any sociopathic scumbag who promises to put all the scary, bearded, tattooed people in prison forever and ever is put into office. No, you don’t get a free pass just because you’re frightened, and neither does she. I would really like to know where this noxious entitlement originated where people believe they have a right to never be exposed to anything which makes them feel angry or sad or frightened or offended. You have a right to be safe. You do not have a right to feel safe. Your feelings are your concern, not mine. Can you really not see how dangerous it is to everyone to create a culture of victimization?

josie's avatar

I knew it was a test

DoNotKnow's avatar

@SmashTheState – The thing is, we likely agree on the state of many of the things you are discussing. But your inability to answer the question is odd. It’s as though you can only see people as pawns in a large power struggle of ideas rather than….people.

SmashTheState's avatar

@josie I don’t own a cellphone or a watch. I had no idea what time it was. I was six to eight feet away and wasn’t sure if she heard me when I said “excuse me” a few times, If I had known she would react this way, I wouldn’t have asked. The whole reason I came here to ask this question is I was baffled by her reaction. I understand that I’m a large, bearded man and can be threatening. But on a major street with cars driving by when there’s still light in the sky, it seems like a massive overreaction to go for the pepperspray and keys-as-Wolverine-claws when asked for the time. I’m not a MRA neckbeard and don’t deliberately go out of my way to be threatening to anyone. But judging by the reactions in this thread, I’m clearly out of step with the degree to which it has become customary to jetison common courtesy in the name of feeling safe.

josie's avatar

@SmashTheState If knowing what time it is so important to you how come you don’t buy the means to tell time. How come it’s somebody else’s job to tell you?

jca's avatar

I feel that nobody has the right to tell others how they should feel. She felt what she felt and her reasons will never be known to any of us. However, I know for myself, my personal safety is paramount and if I feel my safety is compromised, someone else’s opinion of the situation is not going to govern my actions.

Pied_Pfeffer's avatar

If women are being systematically raped and murdered, the solution is not to make all women paranoid and suspicion of men; the solution is to arm every woman sufficiently to make them unafraid to talk to a stranger on the street.

No, that’s not the solution. That’s saying that it should be required for all females go through survival training against a personal attack, be it verbal or physical. Is this because it should be expected that they will be attacked at some point? And you wonder why some women are on guard?

The solution is in changing the culture in which it is “okay” to verbally, emotionally, and/or physically attack another person. It won’t eliminate all personal attacks, but it might cut down on the cat-calling, date rape, partner abuse, etc.

—-
As for this particular example, it sounds as if the woman never saw you if you were walking behind her. If this is the case, your appearance has nothing to do with it. You have no idea what her story is. Maybe she is hearing impaired. Maybe she has been mugged or worse in her past. Maybe a friend or family member has been assaulted before.

On the flip side, she had no idea who you are. Put yourself in her place.

All that is known at this point, based upon the information provided, is that she was armed and that she had no interest in talking to you. Why should she have to respond to you just because you wanted her to?

SavoirFaire's avatar

@SmashTheState I am also a large, bearded man who has been surprised when others found me (or even called me) scary. Some things to keep in mind: a stranger doesn’t know that you aren’t threatening. They do not know your sexual or romantic orientation. They do not know your personal politics. They have no idea whether or not you are armed, trained in unarmed combat, or willing to use force. What they have is their life experience, which in most cases will be a mixed bag of stereotypes, socialization (some of it helpful, some of it terrible), and the knowledge that we are living in a society that regularly engages in victim blaming.

Is a lot of what goes on in this context profoundly fucked up? Absolutely. But blaming this woman is absurd. When women look at me and get scared, I don’t blame them. I blame the men and the society who have put them in this position. You know the solution to the problem: tear down the sexist, violent society we live in and replace it with something better. Treating this as a personal affront accomplishes nothing. In fact, it’s just more victim blaming—and yes, you can both be victims of a third party in this instance.

As for the question of privilege, it is not an on/off. That is to say, you are not either completely privileged or completely unprivileged. There are different types of privilege, and one can benefit from some while not benefiting from others. A poor white male does not benefit from class privilege, but he still benefits from white privilege and male privilege.

SmashTheState's avatar

@DoNotKnow Maybe because for most people the issues I’m discussing seem abstract. Your argument seems to be predicated on me understanding that this is an issue of immediate importance to women who do not feel safe. Can you understand that for me and the people I care about this is an issue of immediate importance about how we’re increasingly being persecuted for our social class? This is not an occasionally-at-night issue. This is a repeatedly, daily, all-the-time issue. Just last month, for example, I made the front page of every newspaper in the country. We objected to the local business lobby putting up steel spikes on the edges of concrete planters downtown for the specific and explicit purpose of driving us away. We’re untouchables, undesirables, the scary, tattooed, poor people with bad hygiene who feature in the nightmare fantasies of soccer moms, and who get harrassed, ticketed, arrested, beaten, and occasionally murdered by police for not having the money or inclination to look like a bourgeois suburbanite.

It’s not about ideology, it’s about me and the people I care about being hurt.

@josie Maybe because I’m old-fashioned. Maybe because I still believe in things like community and sharing. Maybe because I refuse to give in to the culture of fear and distrust. Maybe because I’m so out of touch with the mores of an increasingly empathy-free society that I think asking someone for the time falls under the heading of “common decency” rather than “outrageous rapey come-on.”

“No matter how cynical you get, it’s never enough to keep up.”Lily Tomlin

canidmajor's avatar

@SmashTheState: Do, please, reread @DoNotKnow‘s responses. This was not about a political situation. This was a one on one interaction. I’m sorry that my use of the word “privilege” triggered that story, apparently stepping out of the political into the personal if difficult for you.
I have been assaulted by men, simply because I am female. No other reason. In another thread, which I can’t find because search is busted, there were men complaining because women were afraid, then we were compared to laptops which might be stolen.
Yes, if I perceive danger, polite conversation and “decency” go out the window.
Are you also angry when a black person takes many defensive measures when pulled over for a traffic violation? Yeah, yeah, hate the police, but not every single police officer is a racist bully.
And some of us women, who would be afraid of you in that circumstance, also work against injustice, unfairness, inequity.

You want us women to not be wary to make a positive political statement of which you approve?

JeSuisRickSpringfield's avatar

Your picture makes you look like a hipster. Your behavior on this question makes you seem like a tool. Both make you seem incredibly self-involved, which tells me your activism is more about making yourself feel good than helping other people. Hell, you’re even using this as a way to advertise:

“Tthis reminds me of a situation which occured a few years ago when I was organizing the Ottawa Panhandlers’ Union.”

“Just last month, for example, I made the front page of every newspaper in the country.”

Neither of these statements is actually necessary to make the point you were trying to make with them, so all you could be doing is trying to up your street cred here. But this is par for the course, really. You’ve done this on every forum I’ve ever seen you on. You are always keen to tell everyone who you are, how cool you think you are, and post photos of yourself. Fluther is just one more place for you to stroke your ego.

SmashTheState's avatar

I’m getting frustrated and angry. I’m going to take a break for a while. Just want people to know I’m not ignoring anyone or reaching for pepper spray.

josie's avatar

@SmashTheState
Maybe you are all those things

Maybe the woman in question is not all those things.

And so it goes.

It seems silly to focus so much repressed anger at a stranger. It’s not like you have to have her as a roomate.
I think you are creating a fairly miserable existence for yourself

Good luck with that

Cruiser's avatar

I am guessing more than a couple Jellies would now like to change their answers.

cazzie's avatar

You don’t know her story, @SmashTheState, and she doesn’t know yours. You were both strangers on the street late at night. This is you affirming your own belief system to hate everything because she was scared? My first thought would be this guy is a pest because your phone should have the time on it, so it is very weird to have to ask strangers for the time now a days. You must use a lot of energy to hate everything. That’s sort of wasteful.

Coloma's avatar

Looks should have nothing to do with anything, but they do and if your tone of voice was commanding, combined with your stature and looks, yes, this women may have felt intimidated.
No offense but you do present a formidable physical presence and something also tells me that you can be intimidating in your verbal approach as well.
If some big, intimidating guy yelled out to me ” yeah, I’m talking to you” I’d probably scamper off in haste as well.

Bottom line, yes, I would consider both your looks and most likely, tone of voice to be intimidating.

ibstubro's avatar

I’m a 54 yo white male, and I would have felt threatened.

She never looked at you, by your own account. The fact that you were a male stranger obviously intent on getting her attention on a street at night is intimidating enough.

She’s probably thinking that the best case scenario is she turns around to “Do you have a dollar you could spare?”

jca's avatar

@SmashTheState: “It’s not about ideology, it’s about me and the people I care about being hurt.” No, in this case, it’s not about idealogy, it’s not about you and the people you care about being hurt, it’s about the woman fearing for her personal safety.

stanleybmanly's avatar

I think everything hinges on your clothing and demeanor. And here I would like to compliment you and your avatar and it’s uncanny and striking duplication of Fidel Castro circa 1961. As for the photo with the pipe, I doubt very much if you were attired as such at the time of the encounter. But all of this is irrelevant. The thing which marks this entire exercise and your feigned concern the farce you intended, is that the woman in this episode is paranoid and narrow minded as you fully realize, and therefore unworthy of your concern. She is beneath your contempt, and an embarrassment to our species. By the way, where do you buy your tobacco?

ucme's avatar

Yes, you look like you rape badgers then hide them in your beard to feast on at a later date.
Poor woman was most likely repelled by the stench of swine fat & sweaty testicles XD

Dutchess_III's avatar

@Stinley women are not “conditioned” to be wary of men in certain situations. It is through very personal experience that we have learned to be wary of men.

I would have freaked out too, @SmashTheState. It wouldn’t matter how you looked, or dressed (think charming, well dressed, handsome Ted Bundy,) I would have become scared. There is nothing for you to be angry about.

kevbo's avatar

I went on a weeklong retreat once and got off the plane in my hometown in a very chill mood with a song from the retreat stuck in my head. The lyric was a melodic repetition of the word “you.” I found myself singing the song as I was walking down the airport concourse to baggage claim. I didn’t think anything of it until a woman about 30 yards ahead of me stopped in her tracks (maybe it was me and here and a couple of other people in the concourse) and waited for me to pass. So here’s someone who got creeped out by a decidedly unscary looking person who was singing in a goddamn airport where there are police and TSA everywhere. So I would chalk it up to that woman’s projections and not take it personally.

The other thing I’ll add is that if a stranger ignores you, and it’s not some kind of emergency, then let it go and ask someone else. A persistence like that is aggressive regardless of the recipient.

jca's avatar

Good point by @kevbo. It is aggressive to keep at the woman, despite her not answering you.

Stinley's avatar

@Dutchess_III I disagree, I’ve never had a personal experience that has made me wary of men, of being out alone, being out at night, etc but yet I know these are the situations that are “dangerous” for women. I try to behave in the way that @keobooks mentions so that I do not portray myself as victim, but I think myself lucky that physically I also look tall, strong and fast and that this would put a potential rapist off.

jca's avatar

When I was about 16, I got on the bus and I didn’t have change of a dollar. I asked a woman sitting in the first seat “Do you have change?” I asked her twice and she ignored me. I don’t know if she spoke no English or whatever. I am a white woman and I was and do appear very “middle of the road.” After asking twice and being ignored, I didn’t raise my voice and persist. I asked someone else.

rojo's avatar

Still wondering what being rapey looks like? or for that matter what rapable looks like

jca's avatar

I should clarify above, I wanted “change of a dollar” not that I was looking to be given change.

canidmajor's avatar

You seem to be taking the element of choice out of things, in order to serve your own political agenda. Interesting irony.
You cite privilege in some story about a storefront thing yet do not acknowledge your own. You want the target groups, women and gays to behave in ways that puts them directly in harm’s way, without addressing who the majority of political aggressors are.
Who is behind the spikes on the planters in your city? You’re Canadian, yes? My guess would be white men. Who has historically disenfranchised portions of the population in white dominated countries? Yup, again it’s white men.
My friends who are men of color, nice men, good men, are not offended by women being wary, tired of it perhaps, but not prone to blaming the women.

Motes and beams, fella, motes and beams.

stanleybmanly's avatar

@kevbo are you sure she didn’t stop merely to listen to and clearly hear your singing?

Dutchess_III's avatar

Might look through this question.

@Stinley Most women have had very negative experiences regarding men. You haven’t, therefore you aren’t afraid, therefore it isn’t “conditioning” else you would be afraid too, for no other reason other than you’ve been conditioned to be afraid. We have another Jelly here who hasn’t never been harassed or threatened sexually, and she isn’t afraid either.

Stinley's avatar

@Dutchess_III I am afraid. I try hard not to show it though. That’s what I was trying to say.

stanleybmanly's avatar

@jca Despite my rant above on State’s pepper spray woman, in situations like your change episode there are just too many possible sensible reasons for that woman’s behavior. I mean everything from deafness, to extreme insecurity, to simply “having a bad day”. Around fifteen years ago, I was walking with this big bulging bag of food, beer and booze held out in front of me on my way to the poker game. As I passed an apartment doorway a woman came rushing out and crashed right into me. She stumbled, recovered, looked at me with an expression of stark panic then fled without looking into the street, tripped and fell and was fortunately lucky enough not to have been killed. I still had the bag of stuff, and I was putting it down and moving to help her, the look of sheer terror on her face told me that I was better off simply proceeding on my way. I still wonder to this day what threat that woman felt from a frumpy middle aged man with a big bag of groceries.

Dutchess_III's avatar

No telling @stanleybmanly. But chances are she was threatened by another male. Or maybe just a mouse.

Jaxk's avatar

Everything about you screams intimidation. You purposely dress to be intimidating, your attitude is intimidating, and your insistence at getting attention is intimidating. Now you want to complain because she seemed intimidated. Get real. You wanted to talk to her and she obviously didn’t want to talk to you. If you don’t want others to be intimidated by you don’t try so damned hard to be intimidating. If anyone has a right to be offended, she does.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Good point, @Jaxk. Maybe someone else said this, but it would be really strange to have someone asking for the time in this day and age, too. Everything about the situation would be scary.

DoNotKnow's avatar

^ “Do you have the time?” == “Show me your phone.”

rojo's avatar

Do you have the time
To listen to me whine
About nothing and everything
All at once
I am one of those
Melodramatic fools
Neurotic to the bone
No doubt about it

Sometimes I give myself the creeps
Sometimes my mind plays tricks on me

Dutchess_III's avatar

Do you have the time = let me get close enough to grab you.

stanleybmanly's avatar

@Jaxk Ease up on the State. We weren’t there to assess either him or the woman. My take is he asked for the time, then pushed the issue. Her reaction may have nothing to do with how he looked. It might simply be a case of “never talk to strangers”

Dutchess_III's avatar

But @stanleybmanly the actual question was about how he looked, so…

stanleybmanly's avatar

Touché’ Dutchess!

Jaxk's avatar

When I first met my wife, she had just started with the comapny as a receptionist in the building I worked in. I thought she was good looking and wanted to ask her out. I was hanging around the lobby trying to think of some clever way to ask her for a date. I finally just came out with it and she said OK. She later told me that she was so relieved that I wasn’t there to steal her purse or worse, that she agreed. I had no idea that my hanging out in the lobby would be intimidating but it was. I learned a lesson that I’ll never have to use. We’re still married.

Coloma's avatar

Being an uber friendly type I ended up with a creepy, stalking UPS guy a few Christmases ago that took a fancy to me and was very solicitous about helping me unpack a foam love seat I had delivered. Of course I declined and the guy then actually lied about not getting a signature from me, called his office and told them he would be late returning from his deliveries because he needed to return to my home for a ( not required ) signature and THEN…showed up at my door again hours later saying he was off work and wanting to get together with me! Creepy to the 10th power, AND..the guy was, ( I am not exaggerating ) almost 7 feet tall and built like a Sumo wrestler.

I am 5’3 and he could have crushed me like a fly in a nano second. I managed to get him to leave and reported him immediately to the UPS people who were very concerned. The guy was a temp driver for the holidays and for someone who is not a paranoid type, I did keep my gate closed and locked for several weeks hoping I didn’t piss him off and he was going to return in the night to strangle me in my sleep.
Women really cannot be too careful and it was a spooky feeling having this experience and living alone on a secluded 5 acre property at the time.

jca's avatar

@stanleybmanly: I didn’t think twice about the woman who didn’t want to give me change. My point was even a white, “middle of the road” looking teenager gets ignored or avoided, too.

Dutchess_III's avatar

In the question about sexual harassment that I linked to above, Adirondackwannabe made a comment that really made me sad. I know him well enough to know he is a perfect gentleman, but when you don’t know someone and they approach you…..it’s scary, especially if you’ve had frightening incidents happen in the past. When I was 16 I had a flat tire. I knew how to change it, but some older guy, my dad’s age, stopped and took over. Then got angry because I wouldn’t go out with him.

He said, ”@Dutchess_III I’ve picked up on the terror before, and I wasn’t doing a single sexual thing. I was going up the sidewalk, and a woman and two children are trying to change a flat tire. I stopped to help, because those lug wrenches tighten the lugs big time. I’m carrying a briefcase, well dressed, and doing nothing threatening or sexual and we’re in the open in daylight on main street.. She was terrified of me. I could feel it. But other times I’ve walked women into dangerous places, and they trust me completely. What gives?

kevbo's avatar

@stanleybmanly, I guess I’m doing some mindreading, because I couldn’t know why unless she told me. That just seemed to be the jist of the incident.

talljasperman's avatar

Maybe the lady was deaf.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Nope. She heard him. She pulled out her pepper spray.

flutherother's avatar

Jeeezus K hrist I just pepper sprayed my computer screen. ~~~
Great question though.

tinyfaery's avatar

Where do you live? Steel spikes? Maybe you should move.

And you don’t look scary just pretentious.

talljasperman's avatar

Maybe the lady was in a strange neighborhood and had the heaby jebies.

Coloma's avatar

@talljasperman Women are not idiots if they choose to express caution around male strangers on the street or anywhere. A lot of women end up being accosted because they do not want to appear to be rude to strange men and ignore their gut feelings about certain situations.

talljasperman's avatar

@Coloma Sorry. I edited my statement.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@Coloma to this day I usually avoid eye contact with strange males. It isn’t a precaution I really need to take anymore, but I learned it so early on, like when I was 12, that it’s just who I am now.

ibstubro's avatar

When did she see you, @SmashTheState?
Did you ever actually ask her for the time?

The story is unclear. Were you always behind her escalating tone of voice and demand for attention, or did id start with a face-2-face?
I guess it’s a creepy story either way.

Dutchess_III's avatar

He was behind her, asking for the time. He “kept” saying “excuse me,” louder and louder, and doesn’t understand why she freaked out a little.

syz's avatar

@SmashTheState 1 in 6 women in America have been the victims of rape. 1 in 6. Sorry if your feelings got hurt.

Dutchess_III's avatar

The stats for aggressive sexual harassment are lots, lots higher than that.

DrasticDreamer's avatar

Honestly, no, I don’t think you look creepy, but that’s just it. There is no “one size fits all” for potential rapists. Unfortunately, as a woman who has experienced countless creepy men on the street since I was 12 years old and been screamed at for turning men down or refusing to give my number, had my personal space completely violated by multiple men thinking it was okay to stick there penis up against me in public, chased down by a van full of guys, been followed in cars so many times I can’t count, had things thrown at me for saying “I have a boyfriend” etc. etc. etc, there’s a chance (though I don’t like it) that I would have reacted the exact same way. As a matter of fact, I will not walk on a street at night, by myself, if there is a man behind me. I will stop and act like I’m tying my shoe until he/they pass me. It’s not a matter of letting “bad experiences” or fear control your life when the experiences are literally so countless that they are a very much part of a woman’s reality.

It doesn’t matter how old you are (if you’re past puberty), what your skin color is, how tall or short you are, or what your weight is. I do not for a second think that all men are rapists, but I have to be cautious because that is what my experiences have taught me.

I do think it sucks, a lot, because I’m sure it doesn’t feel good to a lot of men. But in those kind of situations, I’m not going to give a crap about how I’m making a man feel – because I’m more focused on staying alive and not being raped.

Dutchess_III's avatar

^^^ That. I learned very quickly to never slow dance with a guy who wasn’t my boyfriend. Strange men see it as an opportunity to grope, and not in a discrete way, either.

DrasticDreamer's avatar

@Dutchess_III Exactly, and I wasn’t even talking about dancing with people. There was a man on my local light rail who took a crowded train as an opportunity to shove his penis up against my butt, in front of everyone. I moved, he followed me, I told him to stop and back off, he didn’t. I was young – about 18 at the time – and it took another man in his 50s to get the guy to listen. If it happened to me now, I’d handle it much more aggressively. But yes. I have horror story after horror story of what strangers (men) have done to me. In no way does it have anything to do with letting fear control my life. It is, simply, reality.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Exactly. You have to be absolutely careful about every little thing you do because no telling how a guy is going to take it. The slow dancing lesson was but one of a thousand things I learned to avoid.

Dutchess_III's avatar

One guy threw full beer at me, at an out door party, when I rejected his advances. Two other guys got up, he ran, and I left.

Cruiser's avatar

@Coloma Women are not idiots if they choose to express caution around male strangers on the street or anywhere. Damn Straight…If a lady in a dress or wearing Oshkoshbgosh overalls is pulling out pepper spray and car keys it is because she senses she has a damn good reason to.

Dutchess_III's avatar

And that’s why we love @Cruiser! One time my little Vega ran out of gas on a two lane highway between the town I grew up in and Wichita. Three guys in a car stopped. I gave them $10 and asked if they’d go get gas for me. They said they would, but a couple of them were insistent that I ride with them. I absolutely refused. Two of them started getting a little agitated, then finally the third said, “Come on guys! Really? You really expect her to get in the car with three guys she doesn’t know?”
So they took my money and left. A cop stopped a few minutes later, laughed at my naivety in believing they’d be back. (I was sure the good guy would see to it.) The cop said he’d stop back by later to help me out
The guys came back with the gas.
The one good guy asked me for my number. I wouldn’t give it to him (knee jerk reaction was to say “No.” I was 17 and had had way too many experiences at this point,) but looking back I kind of wish I had, or at least gotten HIS number. However, I didn’t learn that trick, of asking for their number instead, until a couple of years later, when my beautiful sister said that’s what she did when she got incessant requests for her number.
Was that you @Cruiser? ;) ♥

Cruiser's avatar

@Dutchess_III P’rolly not but rest assured it is was me I would have bought you the gas and made sure you made it home safe.

Dutchess_III's avatar

:D. You would have had to have gotten my number cuz I wasn’t going home at that moment!

zenvelo's avatar

Here in my mostly middle class suburb, I realized that what @SmashTheState feels unjustly harsh is what young African American males feel everyday just walking down the street across America, where white people will cross the street to avoid perceived (but not real) danger.

cazzie's avatar

Ah.. I think you live in the wrong place. You would fit right in here at a place called Svartlamoen. It started as a squatters area that won it’s right to exist despite local businesses protests. A car dealership had to move out and the buildings now house a daycare and a concert venue. It is still rather fringe but it has legitimised many a free spirt’s ideas of how to live. Artists, writers, communists…. They built chicken coops, veggie gardens, there is a ’ free store’ where people drop off stuff they don’t need and anyone can go in and just take something if they need it. They have a free kitchen that feeds any who arrive.

That spike thing has been an issue here. There are Romanian’s here who beg on the street. They are banned in many cities but not here in Trondheim. Some cities are even building shelters for them. I get what you are saying. But the world is a big place.

cazzie's avatar

Probably why I thought you looked trendy too because your look would not be out of place here.

jca's avatar

According to @SmashTheState‘s profile page, he’s going to be taking a break from Fluther.

DoNotKnow's avatar

^ That’s too bad. Hope he comes back. Despite his concerns, we do actually like a range of perspective here. Unfortunately, I think our inability to re-frame a single woman’s legitimate desire for personal safety into a global class struggle with flowery quotes from Bakunin or connections to the military-industrial complex may have been interpreted as piling on within an echo chamber. Strange how resistance to power ends up resembling the very thing resisted.

SavoirFaire's avatar

@syz If he were still around, I imagine that @SmashTheState would point out that he’s in Canada (where the rate is more like 1 in 17 women). Obviously, there is no “acceptable” rate of rape, and I don’t think that statistic changes the point you were making in any serious way, but it is a significant difference.

@DoNotKnow “Strange how resistance to power ends up resembling the very thing resisted.” Indeed. Again, I can understand the shock and disappointment that he experienced, but I think he is blaming the wrong person. In arguing that everyone should behave as he wants them to behave, @SmashTheState comes across as oddly authoritarian.

@SmashTheState I know you’ve left us for a time, but here’s my final thought on the matter (just in case you care): the change you are seeking is a long-term one. In the words of Lucy Parsons: “Anarchists know that a long period of education must precede any great fundamental change in society, hence they do not believe in vote begging, nor political campaigns, but rather in the development of self-thinking individuals.”

Being angry at this one woman who exists in a society organized to make her this way isn’t productive. She recognized what society is like and chose the only option it has given her in the absence of epistemic certainty (which, of course, is not a real option anyway). As several people have pointed out, that is not irrational. She was exhibiting the behavior of a self-thinking individual, but was unfortunately limited by the circumstances in which she exists.

If you’re just venting your frustration, fine. But if you actually think she is at fault here, then it seems your empathy suffers from a surprising blind spot.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Oh gosh. I really wanted to see if the comments and the experiences we shared allowed him to see his actions from a different perspective. There is no way a strange woman could know if he was “safe” or not, and it’s best to err on the side of caution. It’s not even a personal thing. It’s not like the woman was thinking “Oh, God. He looks like a rapist.” What she was thinking was, simply, “It’s a male. He’s following me and yelling at me.” But….maybe he’ll come back.

zenvelo's avatar

@SavoirFaire I wouldn’t call him authoritarian. I’d call him a Trotskyist.

SavoirFaire's avatar

@zenvelo According to @SmashTheState, anarchism “means only that all relationships must occur by consent.” The opposite, to him, is authoritarianism. This woman clearly did not consent to interact with him, so his insistence that she should have done so is—by his own definition—authoritarian.

Buttonstc's avatar

I’m going to quote the same truism that I did in his previous Q regarding gay people having an obligation to come out of the closet:

“Many questions are really statements in disguise.”

And that’s definitely true in this question as well. Why do I say that?

Because the woman in question (according to his own account) never once turned around. Read it carefully. He repeated it twice.

So, whatever he looks like or doesn’t look like has absolutely no bearing on the issue whatsoever. It’s a total red herring enabling him to bemoan how much people judging him and his friends hurts them.

According to his own account, the woman NEVER TURNED AROUND TO LOOK AT HIM.

So, how the hell could she have possibly judged him on how he looked unless she literally had eyes in the back of her head?

I wonder if this incident he describes actually happened or whether he just wanted to post a provocative rant and then storm off with hurt feelings?

Of course I’m not a mind reader so there’s no way to know for certain why he chose to post this Q.

But I find it strains credibility that a man as intelligent as he would be totally unaware of why a woman walking alone at night would not want to interact with a male who’s a total stranger to her.

Coloma's avatar

Bottom line, insisting that another person respond to us in a particular manner we deem “right” is controlling. A perfect stranger owes you nothing and if you are being verbally pursued in a manner which is pushy, aggressive or insistent it is a potential red flag warning that someone may be dangerous. Tone of voice is everything as well…not to say that there are not plenty of charming psychopaths out there. haha
Ted Bundy used the pity ploy with a lot of his victims.

He wore a fake cast on his arm and would frequent a popular lake resort asking young women if they would help him launch his boat. He was good looking, charming and appeared to be a really nice guy, until he hit you over the head and shoved you into his car with the missing door handles. lol

Dutchess_III's avatar

@Buttonstc How do you manage to put what I’m thinking into writing so succinctly? It was just some half formed thoughts rolling through my head, and you nailed it.
The literal answer is, Yes, from the picture he posted, he does look dangerous, menacing and threatening. From the answers he’s posted in the past, it it appears to be a perception he wants to cultivate. However since she never saw him she couldn’t base her concerns on that. She based them solely on the fact that he was a male, following her down the street, yelling at her.
It’s too bad he isn’t here to clarify what it was that so upset him about her actions.

Buttonstc's avatar

@Dutchess

I think it’s pretty clear what he was so upset about because he goes on and on about it even tho people are telling him clearly that her actions were not at all unusual given the circumstances.

He keeps referring to how (most likely in broad daylight) so many people avoid eye contact with him and his fellow panhandlers and how hurt he feels that they are all treated this way.

And thus his Q about whether he appears “rapey” or whatever. It’s not really a question at all (since the woman never laid eyes on him)

It’s just his convenient entrée to a prolonged rant about how people judge him and treat him so badly, bla bla bla.

He wasn’t really looking for an answer since he kept arguing with whomever actually answered his Q. He already knew what type of response this would elicit from most people (in the exact same way he knew how people would in his long ago Q react to his stating that gay people had an obligation to come out if the closet.)

He started that out as a Q also but it was clear he just wanted the opportunity to answer his own Q and belligerently disagree with anyone who disagreed with HIS preconceived answer.

As I said: many questions are simply statements in disguise.

And I still wonder if this mythical woman he refers to actually exists or is merely an amalgamation of all those (male or female) whom he perceives as having treated him so badly.

He finds it quite convenient to forget that many panhandlers can be quite persistent, obnoxious or rude (not all, but many) so naturally a lot of folks avoid eye contact.

He acts as if he is automatically entitled to anyone he meets interacting with him. As @Coloma wisely observed, this is extremely “controlling” to say the least.

Nobody owes anybody anything (except freedom from harm) when encountering perfect strangers in public. And he is certainly intelligent enough to realize this. But he just doesn’t like it. Too bad. That’s called reality.

Blackberry's avatar

Bad timing man. Should have just let it go and asked someone else. I’m a clean cut guy and still wouldn’t be able to do that in tje same situation.

Your looks are subjective depending on the person. I’m from Oregon so guys like you are normal to me lol.

Buttonstc's avatar

@Blackberry

The funniest part of all this is (by his own account) she never even turned around. So she had absolutely no idea what he looked like. His looks are totally beside the point. He was just fishing and ranting.

This Q is a total red herring :D

BTW: are you liking Oregon better than down South? You used to be stationed in Tenn.?

Cruiser's avatar

@Buttonstc *He already knew what type of response this would elicit from most people * IMHO you are giving him way more credit here than is due. If he truly knew the type of response he would get from his question I doubt we would have seen his myriad of defensive responses and his subsequent bail/respite from Fluther. Genuine people who have conviction for what they believe in do not fold and beat feet.

Coloma's avatar

Well…for as smart as he is, he does have a chip on his shoulder the size of Mt. Rushmore. lol

Buttonstc's avatar

@Cruiser

You may very well be correct. But since I’m not a mind reader and he’s gone, I guess we’ll never know :D

@Coloma

Ha ha. And he must be stoop-shouldered from lugging it around ;)

DrasticDreamer's avatar

@Blackberry Haha! Another Oregonian here, and that’s precisely one of the reasons he doesn’t look creepy to me. There are a lot of people here who look similar. However, I still maintain that “creepy” doesn’t look like anything specific.

Dutchess_III's avatar

I agree, it’s not usually so much looks as behavior and speech that define creepy. However, we can make snap judgements based on looks. You can’t really fault people if others dress in such a way as to be deliberately intimidating.

A couple years ago I was at a convenience store. I had noticed a black guy who came out before I went in. He was dressed like a gangsta, with the do rag, saggy jeans etc. Physically he was giving off that “I’m a gangsta!” vibe. He kind of had that faintly menacing scowl on his face, like he had to make sure that he let everyone know, at all times, that he was a bad guy. He wasn’t from around “here!”
He had finished putting gangsta gas in his gangsta car and was pulling away from the pump as I came out. There was a GINORMOUS gangsta pot hole in front of his car. If he’d hit it would have wiped out his oil pan. I didn’t know if he’d seen it.
His window was down and I said loudly, “Hey man! There’s a huge hole in front of your car!”
He looked at me, his face smoothed into a gentle, good looking young man, and the corners of his eyes crinkled up in a smile, and there was a smile in his voice as he said, “Yeah I saw that! I’m kinda scared!”
That just cracked me up! I grinned and kind of rolled my eyes and shook my head. He gave me the most honest, and dazzling smile in return.
I laughed and said, “Well, I’ll come in after you if I have to, but you look like you’re going to clear it if you just go straight for a bit. Just wanted to make sure you knew it was there.”
He laughed, too, and there was a light in his eyes, and a small curiosity in his voice as he said, “You know…thank you very much!”
“You’re welcome!”
I watched him as he eased over the hole, and he glanced back at me a couple of times. I kept nodding to let him know he was clearing it, then I gave him a thumbs up to let him know he was good to go.
We waved goodbye as he drove off.

He was a very nice guy, and from that brief verbal exchange, and the eye contact we made, I would have trusted him implicitly in any situation, if we had met again.

I would not have been sure without that exchange, and all I had to go on was his attire.
‘Hangs head.’ I probably would have crossed the street.

DoNotKnow's avatar

@Dutchess_III: “A couple years ago I was at a convenience store.”

Phew! thought this was going to go in a different direction. :)

Dutchess_III's avatar

Well, glad he put this in Social!

dappled_leaves's avatar

As others have said above, it’s not your look that makes you scary. It’s the fact that you ignored the boundaries of the woman you were trying to talk to. She indicated (for whatever reason that you will never know) that she did not want to engage with you, and you insisted, as if it was your right to decide if and how the two of you would interact. You showed her in this action that she was not safe around you.

Dutchess_III's avatar

GA @dappled_leaves.

Hmmm…I just noticed that in his details he noted that she was in a dress. Wonder what that has to do with anything?

He also said he was “furious” at the time. I’m sure she sensed it, and that made her feel even safer. That’s another danger women face for refusing advances. It just sucks all the way around.

Coloma's avatar

I have to say that “rapey” has become joke of the week here with my house mate. We have made reference to several men and a few of our animals saying ” Uh oh, he looks rapey.” lol

canidmajor's avatar

The more I think about this, the more convinced I am that (as a few others have said) this Q is just a load of crap on which to A) have his rant, B) convince us that he is REALLY IMPORTANT a personage by whom we cretins should be awed, and C) to tell us again that if we don’t agree with him we are just the Trained Sheep Of The Establishment and that we need to be cowed by his statements that we are as stupid as dirt.

He wins, I keep taking these types of questions at face value and answering them in good faith as if he would care.

Silly me.

Blackberry's avatar

@Buttonstc I lived along the east coast and south for the past ten years and I don’t miss it at all. Especially after colorado, it’s obvious the west coast is the best coast lol.

Buttonstc's avatar

@canidmajor

You got that right !

@Blackberry

Good for you. I’m glad you’re happy. Right now I’m missing the Northeast coast, Philly in particular :)

_Seek_'s avatar

I’m late to this question, but whatever.

I’m a 29 year old woman.

You look like most of my friends.

When I am walking alone in public I do not engage with anyone – male, female, tall, short, big, small, or indifferent.

The motto “better paranoid than dead” has served me well for this long, and I see no good reason to change that pattern of behaviour.

Make whatever judgements you like about whether I’m right or wrong. I give no fucks. I don’t tolerate humans well in daylight in well populated areas; I’m certainly not going to go out of my way to interact in a place where my level of safety is severely diminished.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Well, you seem to tolerate us humans fairly well on Facebook. ~

” I give no fucks.” Dang, I’ve missed you here!

linguaphile's avatar

@Dutchess_III, et. al… I am Deaf and I have ways to know that someone’s following me or talking to me from behind. Since I don’t have my hearing to tell me what’s happening behind me, my use of my peripheral vision is heightened (as evidenced by recent research, the ability is ‘astronomically heightened). I pay attention to reflections in shop windows, can see feet behind me if I look down, can see how people walking the opposite way shift their path to make room for people around me- there are clues everywhere. Even a slight turn of my head will give me information about what’s behind me. So, she could have been Deaf and taken out her pepper spray.

If I was being followed or talked to, I would have stopped abruptly and moved out of the way so that I would have a full view of the follower in front of me, regardless of gender, age, race, or appearance. I hate that feeling of being followed too closely.

That being said, I have no idea why she reacted the way she did to @SmashTheState. My guess is as good as everyone else’s.

Response moderated (Flame-Bait)

Answer this question

Login

or

Join

to answer.
Your answer will be saved while you login or join.

Have a question? Ask Fluther!

What do you know more about?
or
Knowledge Networking @ Fluther