About This Blog

I consider myself to be a confident woman. I walk with my head held high and my eyes straight ahead. I was taught to be aware of my surroundings and scan my environment; when I pass a group of men, however, I now avert my gaze to the ground or feign interest in my cell phone. I intentionally avoid eye contact, careful not to accidentally invite comments.

I envy my male friends who can go for a stroll at night to clear their heads. I never know when my rejection of or resistance to a stranger will spark violence. Too many times I’ve heard about women followed home or physically attacked when they rebuff the “compliment” a man feels entitled to give them.

After a particularly threatening instance of street harassment this past summer—in which the police were no help—I decided I needed an outlet to work through my frustration, fear, and daily exploitation. I was tired of feeling helpless, so I created this blog to chronicle my daily encounters for 30 days: the location (by dropping a pin on my iPhone), a photo of the clothing I was wearing, and a description of the ordeal.


Last night this British man walked up to me and my friend as we were saying goodbye on the curb in a busy part of the west village. He smugly asked us, "Where are you going?"

"Nowhere with you," I responded. "Fuck off." He called us both cunts. I spat at him.
He looked my in the eye and replied, "I hope you both get raped." 

I took a picture of him; he slapped me and purposefully knocked my phone out of my hands. When the police came, they told us his comments were filed under "freedom of speech" and that even if he hit me, it's only illegal if I am badly hurt. The police took him away in handcuffs as his friends chanted "Long Live Britian" and asked me for two different methods to contact me. They assured me that I would hear from them within a few days. I did not.

This isn't about just Trump. This isn't about just Brock Turner. This is about being a woman in public. This is about rape culture. The only way I can guarantee that I am not harassed is if I do not leave my home. I'm tired of the whole world being like this. I'm tired of the system being rigged against women and people of color. I'm tired of the cops who said, "We have wives and daughters" when he was trying to comfort us instead of, "We recognize that you're a person independently of your relationships with men." I'm tired of not being able to go outside without wondering who will say something next.  I'm tired of seeing so many people witness these things happen and still being the only one to do anything about it.  I'm tired of being told, "Be careful" instead of the men being told, "She doesn't owe you anything"--which is why I joined the nonprofit A CALL TO MEN, which educates adolescent boys and men on a healthy notion of masculinity, including consent and sexual respect.  Do your part: #EndRapeCulture. Talk to your sons, your male friends, your cousins, your brothers. If you see something, say something. This is not okay. It's on us. 

Update: Two full months after the incident occurred--almost to the day-- I received a call from the DA for the first time regarding this case. The DA informed me that they were pressing charges against this man for assault and criminal mischief. Because he is not a U.S. citizen and lives abroad, he postponed his first trial date. His trial is now set for February.

Day 30

9:39am: I am walking to the train and texting my mom when a man in his late 50s yells, "Have a good day, sweetheart," out of his parked van. I ignore it because I am writing a message. He repeats himself louder so I look up at him. He beams.

"Don't yell out of cars--it's rude," I lazily call back as I finish typing my message.

3:43pm: I am picking up some groceries for work. On my way to the store, a man says, "nice; beautiful," as I pass. I stop and snap a picture. He seems... flattered? "Hell-o," he calls back. I finish my errand.

Day 29

4:18pm: I am picking up coffee for the office when I pass by two construction workers. The one on the left waits until I have passed by before he says to himself, "God bless you, gorgeous." I turn around and ask, "What are you hoping to accomplish with that?"
"I just said God bless you," he answers.
"But women on the street don't want to hear anything from strangers," I explain, "I'm just on a run for work; I'm just trying to do my job like you." I hold up my bag of coffee beans as evidence.
"Okay. Sorry. Have a good day. Bye," he says, dismissively. I snap a picture.
"Why? I wasn't harassing you or nothing," he calls after me.

Day 28

7:24pm: I walk to my friend's apartment after work with a coworker to watch the Presidential debate. As we walk through Washington Square park, a man with his friend makes eye contact with me and yells, "I love you."

Day 27

I get brunch with a friend and walk around the East Village for a while. I don't get catcalled all day!

Day 26

11:48am: I wake up at my dreamy date's apartment (ayy) and take a taxi home. I step out of the cab and walk half a block when a man says, "beautiful," under his breath. I look directly at him, fart, wink, and say, "that was for you." I am genuinely very proud of myself and giggle as I walk up my apartment steps.

Later that day, I go a few blocks from my apartment to the subway alone, jump in a cab, and spend most of the day as an extra in a film shoot. I then head to a music festival in Central park (accompanied by a male friend) and take another taxi downtown to meet up with friends at a bar. A friend stays over (again, male) so he walks with me to the subway and then to my apartment. I do not hear any comments on the street when I am with them.