The catcalls, with the boys making lewd suggestions about how I would like to spend my Wednesday night, actually didnt come as a surprise-nor did the descent from lewd suggestive abuse, to blatant sexual threats- when they had failed to illicit the desired reaction from me.
I sat outside on my favourite step this afternoon- and heard a very familiar voice shouting about his dick- perhaps it was the recollection of the words- but I recognised this boy immediately as the inadequate little ringleader- who felt that the best use of his time- was to shout abuse at a woman he didnt know-and could easily intimidate. So I stopped him. I asked him if he was the boy who had done that the other night. He claimed it wasnt. I explained that actually, while I wasnt saying it was him- for a 5′11”, well built bloke, and his friends, to shout at a 5′3′ woman, walking alone- was actually a pretty shitty thing to do, and that I was glad it wasnt him- as it was a cowardly thing, that only one of lifes inadequates would do. He said he wouldnt, and blushed, as he sought to avoid eye contact- while his friend looked sheepish. He didnt look quite as intimidating at 5 in the afternoon. He certainly seemed less sure of his sexual prowess when talking to me head on- without the help of his friends and a darkly lit underpass to intimidate me.
My mum used to do things like this, she said go for the ringleader 'cos once you mark them out they don't know what to do with themselves and it shows their mates what pathetic little pricks they are. My mum is rather awesome if a little bit scary.