I know I said in the first post (which you can read here) that this would be a mini-series. But a mini-series can just be two, right? I may have grossly overestimated the amount of times I’ve been inappropriately flirted on.
The only other story I can think of is the time I was walking around St. Louis with my boyfriend and his parents when a man came up to me and tried to hold my hand, and I just said “No, thank you.”
There, now it’s three inappropriate flirtations. Boom. Mini-series.
Once upon a time I spent a summer interning for a blogging website in San Francisco. If that sounds super glamorous it’s because I like to make it sound super glamorous by not mentioning details. The details being that I spent a lot of days in my pajamas, eating meals over Skype with my sister. Also, I didn’t understand the concept of writing to an audience that was more than just myself, so everything I wrote for the website was long and weird and rambly. Classic me!
That summer, I lived with relatives who I’d never really met – my aunt, uncle, and their two kids. It was awkward in theory, but we all became comfortable relatively quickly. Mostly because on one of my first days there, my aunt told me I should be a host on the Filipino TV Channel because I was “skinny but had big boobs.” This is my favorite lie I’ve ever been told.
Here’s where I’m probably supposed to tell you what it’s like to live in San Francisco when most of my life experiences have been limited to the suburban Midwest. Well, it’s cool and great and blah blah Full House blah blah Fisherman’s Wharf blah blah so many hills blah blah I saw a naked man riding a tiny bicycle during Pride Fest. I don’t know. You have Google. Read a top ten list about it or something.
The only unique perspective I bring to the discussion on San Francisco is with the following story.
I was on the final leg of my commute back from work to my aunt and uncle’s house. It was Friday, I’d just gotten paid, and I was walking from my bus stop back to the house, staring at my paycheck. Just being a super responsible adult, walking down the street of a major city with my paycheck flapping in the wind whispering, “Please mug me. You’ll barely even have to try.”
I heard someone yell “HEY!” and I looked up from my paycheck to see a car making a u-turn in the middle of the street to pull over right next to me. My second thought was, “I hope they don’t rob me.” My first thought was, “I hope they don’t ask for directions because I’m really unfamiliar with this area and also just generally terrible with directions.” Solid prioritization of thoughts.
None of my thoughts involved potentially being asked to “chill later,” which was what these two young gentlemen had pulled over to ask me. They also asked my name, my ethnicity, where I lived, what I did, and why I couldn’t chill with them later. All very normal questions that make you feel super safe when shouted by complete strangers from their car. I said something very composed like, “Sorry. No chilling for me tonight. Please don’t try to take pictures of my legs and sell them on the internet.”
They seemed completely unfazed by the entirety of the interaction and drove off. They didn’t even verbally berate me for saying no to the chilling invitation or try to follow me home. (Chivalry isn’t dead yet, ladies!!)
I continued walking home, trying to process what part of my physical demeanor signaled that I was down to chill with strangers who ask me personal questions.
Then, I saw my uncle driving home from work. He pulled up to the sidewalk and I thought, “Wow! What a fantastic coincidence! My uncle must have gotten out of work earlier than usual. Hey, I never noticed how prominent my uncle’s mustache is. Did my uncle have a mustache this morning? Also, I thought his car was blue?”
At which point I realized that it was not my uncle, but a new stranger who pulled over to the side of the road because he needed to tell me that I was “the most beautiful girl he’d seen all day.” Except it was only like 2:30 pm, so I think he was trying to leave his afternoon options open.
Then, he proceed to invite me out to lunch where he promised he would “treat me like a lady.” I remember because he was very persistent about how lady-like he would treat me. And I, again, said something super composed like, “Sorry. No lady lunches for me. Please don’t memorize my face and create a life-size replica of me.”
He was more fazed by my lack of interest than the previous car strangers. He ended the exchange by saying, “Well, if you change your mind, here’s my number.” And he handed me a flyer for his window washing service.
And that, kids, is the story of how I met your father.
Stay tuned for the next episode in which your Aunt Robin and I have a long conversation on healthy relationships, and we both cry while watching a tampon commercial.