Marvelling at the sheer fucked-up-ed-ness of it all

coffee is the answer to every questionFamous asshole beats the crap out of women, and in the quiet heat of the shower, women think, “Dodged that bullet. But I was never pretty/smart/interesting enough to be picked out of a crowd, anyway.”

Video showing a woman being harassed on the street goes viral, and sitting alone on the commuter train, women think, “This never happens to me. Did it ever? Have I let myself go? Was I ever desirable?”

Women huddle in the corner of the coffee shop, alternately confessing to the above and marvelling at the sheer fucked-up-ed-ness of it all.

Not all women, sure.  But more of us than you’d think.


  1. It’s one of the parts I’ve really struggled with understanding throughout this particular fucked up mess. As a strong, confident woman, I would not have problems going to the cops, or standing up for myself. But the more I talk, and listen, to women, the more I realize that I’m really an exception. Lack of self-esteem and self-doubt seem to prevail. Even talking to my teen daughter – who shares my confidence, fortunately – the tales she brings home about her female friends – and the actions of some of their male counterparts, are headshaking. We haven’t improved a lot over the decades – even if we like to think we have.

    • I’m pretty sure I’d go to the cops … but who knows? I’m also pretty sure I can punch someone hard enough to break their nose, or kick them hard enough to crack a rib, or stomp them hard enough to sever a vas deferens (the latter being a preferred imaginary scenario for obvious reasons). But again … who can say.

      How messed up is it that we console ourselves, that we find safety in the (false) belief that we’re not attractive enough to be the target of catcalls and abuse? Brutal.

  2. Watching this unfold and the Ferguson MO murder and subsequent videos of police violence has been a hard reminder of how dangerous it can be for many people in this society that treats me just fine. In recent days, friends have revealed that they had been warned through the grapevine about Gomeshi. Others, that they were raped and never reported it. It’s like we sit in the same movie theatre and see two very different movies. Jesus I hope MLK was right about the arc of history bending towards justice, we have so far to go.

    • Years ago, P and I attended the “Hard Liquor and Porn Film Festival” at the (temporarily licensed) Bloor Cinema — all parody films, though the hooch was real. One of the features was filmed using that old 3D technology, the kind where you needed to use red and blue glasses to get the full effect. Close one eye, and see closed captioning intended for women; close the other and see copy meant only for men. It was funny, largely because it seemed implausible: how could the exact same image have such radically different interpretations? But it isn’t funny, not when played out in real life. You’re completely correct about that.

  3. Completely messed up.

If you think I’m talking about you here, yeah, you’re probably right.

If you think I’m talking about you here, yeah, you’re probably right.

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