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WTF, Dudes?

April 8, 2013

I’m a feminist. But I don’t hate men. And if I do, I keep it specific, hating only on one specific guy who’s set himself apart as a shining beacon of how to nauseate anyone, male or female.

But sometimes, I’ve been known to curse an entire half of my species, never mind the fact that my closest friends and most of my family members are male. The past few days have been prime examples of brilliant beacons of jackassery that, sad to say, I have yet to encounter from a woman. Call me sexist if you must.

The first was pretty mild and could be interpreted two ways. I was taking a break from skiing when a guy working Guest Services complimented me on my rainbow suspenders. “Thank you!” I said sincerely, since I didn’t get rainbow suspenders for my ski pants with the hopes of blending into a crowd.

“Those are so awesome,” he gushed. “I will give you straight up cash for them, no questions asked.”

I laughed, “I’d totally take you up on that, if not for the fact that my pants would be down around my ankles by the end of the day without ’em.”

“I’d pay extra to see that!”

I gave him a raised eyebrow and went on my way. I was willing to give him a pass on that, just because the non-creepy way in which he said it gave me the idea that he just thought seeing someone try to ski with her (or his!) pants falling down would be pretty hilarious. I mean, I’d be laughing my ass off if I saw that.

The guy this morning, however, who catcalled me when I was innocently trying to walk to the library with soaking-wet hair made his intentions pretty clear.

As did the delivery driver for a sushi restaurant I like to order from, or used to. When he dropped off my dinner, he gave me a hug (aw, hell no) and asked how my birthday had been, since the last time I’d ordered had been right before that auspicious day. Fair enough, I suppose.

Then he asked how hungover I’d been the next day.

“Uhhhh…” I said, taken aback, “I didn’t drink enough to get that hungover.”

“Aw, your friends, no good! I’d take you out to drink and do it right.”

I laughed awkwardly. He’d managed to work his way inside the entryway to my apartment building, so there was no good way of shoving him back outside and firmly locking the door.

“What you like to drink?”

“Uhhh, beer?”

“I get you beer with your dinner next time. You tell me what you like, I take you out after work and drive you to the bars. It’s on me. Here’s my number.” He proceeded to write it on the bag containing my dinner. “You call me at 9:30 when I finish, okay? Or I call you. I have your number.” And indeed he did. My apartment’s non-functioning doorbell, my greatest line of defense from pesky door-to-door salespeople and Jehovah’s Witnesses, means that I need to have delivery drivers call me when they get to my building. This guy was no exception.

He left after that, leaving me still standing at the open door with my jaw dropped open. Then I shut it, shrugged, and locked the door. Surely he was just trying, in his own misguided way, to flatter me for some extra tip money that he sure as hell hadn’t received.

But apparently he was serious. At around 10:00, just as I was settling into another episode of DS9 and contemplating how empty my life is going to be when I finish this set of DVDs that encompasses the last season and how I’ll really need to find something to fill the void, like maybe The Office or something else on Netflix, I got a call. It was the delivery driver. I didn’t pick up. Fortunately, he didn’t call back.

I currently have no way of explaining how I feel about this. I’ve been flirted with and flirted back with service professionals before. I know enough to realize in my own service profession that, as wrong as the institutions and traditions surrounding it might be, giving one of my middle-aged male guests on the hill a coy smile could result in a tip large enough to treat my first ex-husband to dinner in one of the finer establishments downtown.

But as far as I can tell, I gave this guy no invitation to use my number for anything other than, “Hey, I’m at your front door. Can you come get my food?” Unless awkward and uncomfortable laughter and polite responses are now considered to be come-ons.

Which leaves me unsure as to my next step. I enjoy this restaurant’s sushi, and doing pick-up or dining at the establishment defeats one of my main purposes in ordering in–if I wanted to put on real clothes and venture outside at 8:00 p.m., I could save myself some money and go to precooked foods section of Safeway. But what am I supposed to say? “Hey, when you send the delivery driver out, could you either make sure it’s not the usual one or tell the usual one not to hit on me?”

And since I haven’t figured out how to deal with the situation yet, I’m wearing my comfiest flannel, petting my cat, and grumbling about how men are pigs. One of these days, I’ll get over it–just as soon as the douchebags of the world get over the idea that persistence pays off and even the strongest “no” secretly means yes.

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39 Comments
  1. You should enjoy your Sushi by all means necessary.. Maybe you should tell him you prefer girls or something,,works all the time for straight girls 😀 Nice read

    • Thank you! And I’m not sure how well that would work…some of my friends haven’t had time to blink between saying, “I’m a lesbian,” and hearing, “Ooh! Threesome?”

      • My response in that situation would probably be “oh, are you transitioning to female?”. And/or pepper spray.

      • I’ll have to remember the first one! It would really depress me if I had to carry pepper spray down to my own front door, though.

  2. I would most definitely be calling the restaurant to get him fired. Totally unprofessional and inappropriate to use a customer’s phone number to ask for a date. No excuses! Ugh. Gross. Pigs.

    • That is my plan the next time I call, and call I will–I like sushi too much, and I like not having to drive to get it. I thought it was an established rule of any service profession that you do not ask paying customers for a date, and you DEFINITELY don’t call their phone to pester them further!

      • Haha I hope we get to read about this! 🙂

      • Oh, if there’s a modern-day Shootout at the OK Corral confrontation (hopefully with fewer guns and livestock), this will doubtlessly be the first place I turn!

  3. Just wondering, but did you become a feminist after painfully realising that “no” means “yes” in the male version of any language, or before you discovered that openly feministic women represent a challenge men can’t resist due to their primeval instincts of hunter-gatherers? )

    • Actually, I’ve been a feminist since I was but a wee lass! My mother, as nuts as she was, did her best to convince me that Cinderella and Snow White went on to get their Ph.D.s and found their countries’ versions of UNICEF once they got that marriage business out of the way. But even if modern men are getting too in touch with their Paleo-Lithic roots, shouldn’t there be some warning bells going off when the “prey” decides she’s had enough of that shit, turns tail, and starts running after the hunter with fangs bared?

      • Bared fangs are expected after marriage. Running after the hunter never happens in romantic movies. Disney messes up their heads too. Boys’ moms never tell them Cinderella went on to get a PhD. Oh, by the way, did she really? )))

      • Well, the original versions of the story only mention the generally horrifying fates that befell the stepmother and stepsisters, so all I know for sure is that Cinderella did not have to dance at her wedding wearing iron-hot shoes until she fell over dead or get her eyes pecked out by birds on her way from the ceremony. Since it’s open to interpretation, I say she did get her Ph.D. in mental health counseling, because good grief, even if you had every reason to hate those women, living through those sights must do a real number on your mind.

  4. This is very funny to read, If the guy that delivers my food did that I would be creeped out, probably because I don’t know any of them at all! This post cheered me up though 🙂

    • I wouldn’t say I know this guy either! The only reason he knew about my birthday was that I mentioned it in passing when I ordered in the hopes of getting free edamame or something. I was quite creeped out that he remembered.

  5. Good lord, that is creepy. It never ceases to amaze me how obtuse men can be about things like this. Yes, essentially cornering a woman in her stairwell while you make a pass at her is a surefire way to woo her…

    Also, I live in Denver as well and love me some sushi-now I will wonder!

    • I’m reticent to share the restaurant’s name because they do make some damn fine sushi, and I’d hate for them to lose all their business, but if they deliver to the Capitol Hill area, you have every right to wonder.

  6. The male ego has very few limits. The word no is like that whistling sound only dogs can hear — men can’t hear it. We know what we say. They know what they hear. Big difference.

    • Indeed! In some cases, I think the whistling sound is that of the obvious “I’d rather eat two-day-old roadkill than go on a date with you” flying right over their heads. Maybe we can get a team of dog-whistle specialists on the case?

  7. Funny how all men assume we receive their attentions as compliments… I’m with you. It’s disgusting. It’s too much. It needs to stop. Especially from the ugly ones…

  8. Can’t really blame a guy for trying. Though I think his effort was short-sighted and weak, I give him props for actually having balls to try.

    • It would have been one thing if he’d been off-duty and run into me on the street. Even if he’d just left his number on the bag, I might have rolled my eyes, let it slide, and use the bag for used cat litter the next day (the last of which happened). But he then went and CALLED MY NUMBER, which I had not given to him–the restaurant provided it to him to be used for business purposes only. So as far as I’m concerned, it was a landslide of creepy fail on his part.

      • Yeah. I agree. He should have at least been more coy about it. “Would you mind if I call you at your number?” or something similar. Not just insisting that he’ll call you and will see after he gets off. Probably would have yielded a rejection anyways.

      • I’ll admit, it’s a tough balance when you’re in customer service and find the customer attractive. Would I have been offended if he’d left it at, “We should get a few drinks sometime. Here’s my number, if you’re interested”? Probably not–most guys are perceptive enough to realize that a lack of phone calls means a lack of interest. But calling my number, which I had not given him directly (yes, I did give the restaurant my number with the instructions to pass it along to the driver since my doorbell doesn’t work)? Way out of line.

  9. Justin permalink

    Why don’t you just be honest with the person? Let them know that not only are you not interested in meeting with them socially but find the idea unprofessional. As far as creepy cat callers go…what can you do? Is it worth your time to go over there and give them a piece of your mind? Maybe not. If a man is attracted to you he may hit on you, but that doesn’t mean that he will do a good job of it. If you can make your intentions clear to the other person without insulting them, then maybe instead of coming away from that situation with a bad taste in your mouth, you can come away from it feeling complimented that someone finds you attractive, I think you walked into the one about your pants being around your ankles…even if you say something in innocence, that doesn’t mean that the other person knows that or interprets it that way. As a customer service representative it was very unprofessional of him to insinuate anything sexual to a guest.

    • I usually do give my honest assessment of the situation with men hitting on me, but in this case, he not only had me cornered (as mentioned in the post, he’d somehow worked his way beyond the point where I could just shut the door in his face if he took the rejection badly), but he was also effectively holding my dinner hostage. Making a grab for it and risking getting into a physical confrontation with a man who outweighed me by a good fifty pounds didn’t seem like the best idea ever, and since I’d already paid for it over the phone, I was not about to walk away empty-handed.

      As for taking a compliment, I don’t find it particularly complimentary when strangers take a shine to my physical appearance, which was clearly all this guy had to go on. I don’t find it to be an insult, either, but being found attractive to the opposite sex is not one of my life goals. I’d be more flattered if a guy started talking to me about music or TV shows, found some commonalities, then said, “We seem to have similar interests! If you want to talk about this some more, we can exchange numbers.” That was obviously not what happened here, and the way he went about it did give me a bad taste in my mouth (see: effectively holding my dinner hostage).

      I also don’t think it should matter what I say or do. That guy’s actions crossed way over the line when he called my number, and it should be a basic rule of any sort of customer service that you never hit on a guest, unless the guest initiates by saying, “Hey, you seem like a fun person to get a drink with. Call me sometime!” Otherwise, mind your own damn business.

      • Justin permalink

        If you were in fear of a physical altercation, then you did the best that you could do to feel safe and get the delivery person out of your apartment. I’m not faulting you on that by any means…also you wanted that sushi. If you feel that this will be a problem in the future, then you have two straight forward options. 1. Call the delivery guy and let him know that you are not interested in him, but that you enjoy being a patron of said restaurant and would be upset if the situation were to effect that relationship. 2. Call the restaurant and let them know what happened, how it could effect their business, and see what options come up. Maybe suggest a different delivery person? Its a pain in the a** for sure, and its not a fun situation to be in. I’m sorry that you have to go through that.

        There is a line in the customer service industry that shouldn’t be crossed. Its unprofessional and gives the company that you are representing a bad name when you cross it. Again, no argument there.

        As for your second paragraph, I’m not sure if you are expressing a general view or one that is specific to the situation. Being found attractive by the opposite sex doesn’t have to be a life goal for it to be part of your/everyone’s life. Strangers will take a shine to you based on your physical appearance. That’s what physical attraction is all about. Physical attraction is based on the appearance of another individual. A male/female will identify the person that is attractive to them and from there things progress. If you find a person physically unappealing then it is unlikely that you would initiate a conversation with them based on the desire to court/be courted by them in the future. This may not include every human being on the planet, but it is by far the majority mind set. So, if you are out and a man were to walk up to you and say: “You look incredible. I don’t think that I have ever seen a woman as beautiful as you. Can I sit with you?” That wouldn’t invoke any positive feelings in you? You would rather the gentleman express his interest in literature, art, and movies before showing any interest in you as an individual that is physically attractive?

      • If a man came up to me and said that, I’d probably roll my eyes and tell him to find somewhere else to sit. If I’m out somewhere, I’m either with friends and would rather talk to them, or I’m reading a book and definitely do not want to be disturbed for something that is, to me, so trivial. I know how much of this nebulous notion we call “chemistry” is based on physical attraction, but I am honestly not interested in any form of physical relationship right now. So yes, a man who wanted to get to know me either as a friend or more intimately would have to start with an informed opinion about the book I was reading or a popular movie, for example, in order for me to have any interest in dropping what I was doing to talk to him. If I don’t want to talk to him, I truly don’t want to do anything else with him. I’m not saying that’s how it works for all women, but for me personally, commenting on my appearance is a huge turn-off.

  10. Listen! You have a right to that delicious sushi, my friend! I would probably just wait for him to get there, look out the peep hole and be like, “That’s fine! Just leave it on the step!” And then slip a 20 under the door hahahaha! Or call the place and be like, “Your delivery guy is creepy.” Either way, I’m afraid subtlety might not be my strong suit.

    • Haha! I think I’ll probably go with the latter, if for no other reason than the under-door-breeze-stopper (there’s got to be a better name than that, but that’s what Google came up with) preventing even a bill from getting under there. I think this is a situation that calls for a lack of subtlety, however!

  11. As one of those male types, even I cringe at seeing some guy desperately trying to hit on someone that is clearly not interested. In fact, I probably have passed up a load of opportunities because I felt awkward with the situation that they were in the service industry and I did not want to seem out of line.

    You know what creeps me out more than guys cat calling a woman? There was a woman who was interested in me and she once told me a story that she was driving and some guy yelled out the window at her that he thought she was hot. So she whipped the car around and followed him until he pulled into a parking lot. What kind of person would do that? No date for her!

    Anyway, great post!

    • Was she doing it to deliberately try and creep him out?! That is truly bizarre, but I do know that I’ve had those days where I’ve contemplated pulling the psycho routine to get rid of someone who was bothering me, but doing that for one comment is taking it a wee bit too far.

      Props to you for not pushing it with women, though, even if that might have led to missed opportunities. There are women out there who will appreciate it!

  12. joshsuds permalink

    Definitely a creepy guy. But, it must be tough for a sushi delivery driver to get a date huh? I wonder if he’d already tried all the normal ways to ask for a date, kept getting rejected, and then thought, screw it! I’m gonna start calling up female customers. Persistence got me my green card and it’ll get me a date too!

    • The last line of your explanation made me giggle. Although now I do wonder he didn’t have his green card yet and was hoping I could provide him with one? If so, I plan to immediately lobby my senators and congresswoman for looser immigration regulations simply so I can avoid getting hit on by delivery drivers. X(

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