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Saturday, August 01, 2009

Construction Workers: Building Apartments, Tearing Down Women

Thursday morning I was walking back to my house from my boyfriend's with my bike. As I passed some men working on a building Franklin Avenue at Bergen Street a man standing at the bottom of the scaffolding began to say something inappropriate in reference to riding and biking and me. Most of the cat calling on my street involves the typical "hello beautiful/sweetheart," but this was more sexually aggressive and explicit. I was a bit stunned, but just continued walking back to my house.

After bringing my bike upstairs, I got ready for work and began to walk back down the street towards the subway. As I approached the construction site again, I readied myself for the same guy to throw some comments at me. I was almost past him when he started saying more inappropriate things (along the lines of the "ooh baby lemme do this and that..." GROSS). At that point i turned around and said "Stop harassing me. I just want to walk down the street without being harassed. It is inappropriate to make those comments and it's rude. I am not a piece of meat and I should not be treated like one. I am a person too. Don't ever say anything like that again to me or anyone else!"

What infuriated me the most is that he kept trying to say "Ok, now you have a blessed day ma'am," while I was telling him off - really condescending! After the fact, I wanted to go back and say, "I will not have a blessed day. NO THANKS, ASSWIPE!"

The worst part is that I'm probably going to see that guy when I walk from my house to the subway in the mornings, and that makes me a little worried. If he thinks it's ok to say those things to ladies, who knows what else he thinks is ok to do? I hate feeling threatened on the street where I live. ARGH! If this guy continues to bother me, what should I do? Keep on telling him off? Contact the police? Carry pepper spray? Move?

Submitted by GS