So yes, I am kind of dressed up. I was just at an internship interview. Yes, I am sitting by myself eating my lunch. Thanks. By the way – what the fuck is your deal? I know you can’t be looking at train schedules for all of those 15 minutes. I know you keep leering at me. You’re not being that discrete, and you are kinda grossing me out. Why can’t I just sit alone for half an hour and eat my lunch without someone thinking I’m there to look pretty for them? I am so grossed out that I felt like I had to avoid eye contact with everyone just because some of them were like you and aparently assuming that a young woman sitting by herself was looking for some kind of attention. You’re pathetic. It took you a good twenty minutes of (not very) sneakily leering at me for you to finally walk away – don’t think I didn’t notice that you were turning around every twenty feet or so to stare some more.
Submitted by E.M.
Last night I was rushing to catch the subway at 34th Street. I was rushing down the stairs to the D platform and this little man with a rockin’ mullet, who looked like he has just walked out of Michael Jackson’s “Beat It” Video, stopped, turned around, looked at me, and had the audacity to say “I lick a lot of pussy.” Eww! I have never been so upset in my life that my phone was off so I didn’t get a picture of this creep. As I was in a hurry I only had time to roll my eyes, give him a disgusted look, and flip him off.
Submitted by Rachel
No I will not take off my shirt or show you my ass for your polaroids. Skeevy asshole. I’m so happy to go back to San Francisco and say goodbye to the Bowery’s poetry scene… Where they knowingly tolerate blatant sexual harassers in their scene.
I talked smack right back at you and played along to hear more of the bullshit. And then pointed out to you that craigslist would be a better place to find women for your polaroid exploits. Put up your ad and get the fuck out of poetry.
Dear women in the Bowery Scene and people there who aren’t misogynist fuckheads, I feel sorry for you that you have to put up with that kind of thing. Why do you?
Dear woman with the shaved head who tonight at the poetry club took off your shirt for this dude in the bathroom, did you feel all empowered when this guy went on to harass other people and show your photo in his book and to boast that he likes the authentically dykey ones the best, next to the trannies?
Dear MC dude of the Urbana slam team, nice job of laughing off sexual harassment to my face. Also thanks for letting me know that “that guy hangs out here every single day at the poetry club.” That makes it all better! I’m sure everyone just thinks he’s SO funny and such a character!
Dear guy working the door… I thought you were laughing with me and were complicit in my fool-baiting. “Thanks” for then when I confronted the dude about his fucked-upedness, then acting like you didn’t hear anything wrong… And for saying that you didn’t hear anything hostile. Because we all know that asking all the women in a cafe, or a poetry reading at a bar, to take off their clothes for a camera and if they have any “intimate” piercings or tattoos is just totally FRIENDLY… It makes women feel all appreciated and welcome and stuff…
Oh also? The tempting offer of a free copy of your poetry book in exchange for the polaroids of my naked body… not tempting at all.
Submitted by Liz Henry
Passing by the local supermarket this morning on my way to work, one of the stock guys from the market (he was wearing his smock/uniform) got altogether too close to me and called me “chula.” [HB NOTE: For you nonspanish speakers, chula means sexy or hottie]. I told him to shut up, that he should concentrate on his job instead of bothering people. He just stood there and laughed. So I got out my cell phone and aimed. This guy must have some experience dodging cameras because he immediately threw his hood over his head, covered his face with one arm, and started desperately twirling around, looking for his shopping cart, trying to get away from me with his eyes covered up, keeping his face hidden. He looked like such a fool. So, I only got a lousy shot of the back of his head, but at least I got the satisfaction of watching him run and hide, like the cockroach he is.
Submitted by Nancy
Hello, I’ve just been gropped on 16th St. and 8th Ave. It was 4pm- bright sunny day, and I can’t believe this just happened to me. I have my wits about me always and I walk confidently with a sort of ‘don’t fuck with me’ look on my face, but it still happened! I was just walking, and this guy walking by, out of no where, stuck his hand out and felt my vagina. I just can’t believe it. If there’s anybody with any encouraging words, I’d love to hear them, because right now, I just feal like I never want to walk outside by myself again- and I hate that. Dammit.
Submitted by Kathleen
I’m only twelve, so I get grossed out pretty easy.
As I was walking home from school one day, a man A LOT older than me stops walking as I walk past. He tries to grab me but I speed up so he misses. “I love your ass!” he calls after me.
Submitted by Fiona
(A special note from the Hollaback team: GO VOTE! Let’s make this world a better place together. New Yorkers: got voting questions? Get them answered here.)
My roommate and I walked twelve blocks to a Halloween party last night, and were harassed by NINE different people. After the first three guys in the first three blocks started calling at us (despite the coats that covered up our costumes!), I remembered hearing about Holla Back and I whipped out my cell phone. These were the only pictures that came out clearly, but the
two doofy old guys were by far my favorite. I walked back to them after they called out to us, and said, “smile. I’m putting you on a website that ridicules creepy people who harrass women on the street.” So what do they do? Smile, of course! I really wish I could say “only in New York City…”
Submitted by Emily