sprite writes
broodings from the burrow

May 23, 2006

anyone have a killer line?
posted by soe 2:20 am

You know, the one that shoots down the person hitting on you in a public place?

Guys approach me on the street with some regularity, asking me if I date “brothers.” Usually if it’s that innocuous I just reply that I would, but that I think my husband might have issues with it. I laugh. They laugh. Everyone has a polite out. As if you’d accept a date with a random stranger leering at you from a car window or a street corner.

I’ve learned when I travel alone to wear a ring with a jewel-like stone. It doesn’t stop everyone from hitting on me, but I feel like it cuts down on it.

Other encounters, however, are harder to brush off. There was the guy in a church courtyard/public lunch spot who touched my toe and told me I needed a ring for it. There were the elderly men (old enough to be my father, if not my grandfather) who made dirty comments about me as I sat obliviously reading my book in a “family-friendly” pocket park next to Eastern Market earlier this spring. When I noticed, I bolted, and it freaked me out for weeks. In London, a certainly drunk and possibly homeless man kissed me — with an astonished Rudi and a snickering security guard standing right next to me. My cousin later told me I was taking politeness a bit far.

I used to think I was the only one. But then I talked to a few girls at work and it seems to be a cultural thing. One colleague was so irked by an encounter on her walk to the Metro one morning that she learned PowerPoint by creating a presentation containing her response. Another once had someone come on to her at a bus stop. He licked her. She belted him.

Tonight Rudi asked me to pick up beer for him. I had already passed Whole Foods by, leaving a liquor store as my option between there and home. I knew when he asked that it wasn’t going to be a pleasant experience. I was wearing a skirt. I thought about saying no — particularly since I wasn’t going to drink any of it. On the other hand, Rudi doesn’t shirk from buying personal things for me, so that didn’t really seem to be a fair excuse.

Ultimately, though, I didn’t want to feel powerless. I don’t want it to be my problem. I don’t want to have to alter what I wear and where I go and how I conduct my life just because I’m a woman and some stupid git can’t keep his comments or his leers to himself.

But there’s always one. Sure enough, some guy comes up to me as I’m paying for the beer. “Wow, look at those legs. Are you a kickboxer?”

“Yep,” I replied, remembering Amani’s advice to look as if the person hitting on you is remarkably laughable and inconsequential.

“No, you aren’t.”

“Then why did you ask?”

“I just got out of the army. Where did you come from?”


I bet if I’d threatened him with the drop spindle and US6 knitting needles I had in my bag, he would have left me alone. Of course, I bet if I’d done that the liquor store clerk who idly watched the whole encounter would have called the cops.

Instead, I just walked home, getting madder and madder as I went along until I arrived at home fuming.

Maybe next time I’ll ask him if these sorts of encounters ever work and why he bothers if he’s guaranteed rejection every time.

Maybe I’ll ask him what he’d think if some skeevy old guy were hitting on his daughter.

Sadly, I bet he wouldn’t see the correlation.

So, anyone have a killer line to end those sorts of encounters?

Category: dc life,politics. There is/are 1 Comment.

You already know that there is no catch-all line that works every time. Each individual skank is unique.

For some, you could claim to be a lesbian. Others would see that as simply a challenge, to convert you to heterosexuality through their perfect manliness.

Some would be put off if you started ticking off their bodily imperfections – small package, large gut, hairy knuckles – others would see this as attention showing that you really were interested.

Some would be deterred if you quite bluntly said “I’m never going to fuck you.” while others would fail to believe you.

Claiming to have a sexually transmitted disease might gross them out, but probably won’t make them stop talking.

Using a spray bottle, like you would use to train cats, would be extremely satisfying, but could lead to escalations of violence.

No… probably the best way you could teach people not to behave that way, would be to ask them for their name and number, and then post a story about them, including all the personal information they gave you, on a special Blog where you collect stories about the skanks you encounter.

Comment by Grey Kitten 05.23.06 @ 2:49 pm