All Mouth

NOT for sale: human trafficking

You know what, kraken-lovers, I had a brief Twitter chat on Saturday night (see, I am capable of talking as well as screaming) which reminded me of something that has sent me even closer to the crumbling edge of the clifftop that stands betwixt sanity and derangement. In fact even though this incident occurred ten years ago I still have momentary fantasies about sharpened chopsticks and bollock dissection. That’s because one day, while walking to work, a strange man felt compelled to tell me to “Smile, love!”.

What a festering fucker of fuckerish festerment. There I was at a pelican crossing waiting for the traffic to stop when a man in a white van (excuse me stating the obvious there), who had stopped at said light, leaned out of his window to tell me to jump to his screeching tune. Well as you’d expect I duly told him to go fuck himself and wandered on my way. Yet even though the incident ended there, over and again I’m forced to wonder why so many men think that telling random women to perform like circus seals is actually acceptable.

Now, before you tell me that this is harmless, I’m here to tell you that it as sure as shit is not. That’s because when bloke tells a woman to “Smile, love!” what he’s really doing is attempting to assert his control over her for his own cheese-covered stiffy and testosterone-fuelled satisfaction. And that’s exactly how I felt at that pelican crossing, that regardless of who I am or what was going on in my life at that time, my priority should have been to make the world a more pleasant place for a man I didn’t even know. It’s as if these guys think that exactly half of the population is a living, breathing song n dance troupe just awaiting an instruction to can-can.

Now these men, or as I like to call them ‘tombolas of ignorance, drying thigh-spaff and lemming shit’, never see this as harassment. Worse, when told that it is harassment they inform we women that we are bitches, need a sense of humour or deserve a hard shag. You know, because their unprovoked, unwarranted and unwelcome demand isn’t nearly as violating as our refusal to do it with a click of the heels and a salute. It’s the equivalent of me randomly telling passing men to “Twerk, love!” but when they quite rightly don’t, take such grievous offence that I call them impotent fridge humpers who deserve to be intruded upon with one of Satan’s many and varied flaming todgers.

Worse, if a man tries to enforce in public his prurient demands upon a woman he doesn’t even know, then what in the fuck is he willing to enforce in private? On the street it might be a smile but in his own home it might be anything else your imagination can dredge up. And that’s what’s uppermost in women’s minds when they get told to grin like meth-addicted monkeys, that if they don’t do as they’re told then this guy is infinitely capable of demanding more. All he has to do is get his victim alone and it’s downhill all the way, right to a police interview room and a DNA swabbing she’ll never forget.

Yet, the only way I’m going to listen to a random bloke when he clicks his fingers is if he’s begging me to call 999 because his large intestine has just slopped out of his arse and into the road. Anything even vaguely less urgent than that will be rewarded with his detailed re-understanding of the English language and quite possibly a re-understanding of what his penis is capable of when it’s wrenched at a 90 degree angle. That’s because, as a 42 year old woman, I am a thousand things but a puppet for a fucking stranger isn’t one of them.

And for once this means that as a woman with Bells Palsy, facial paralysis which means only the right side of my face displays a smile, any wank-wisket who attempts to demand a grin will get something decidedly uglier. Although how fucked up is society that my being wonk-faced is actually an advantage? Surely there must be less drastic ways of preventing men from acting as if I’m a mere extension of their pestilent minds.

So while I don’t largely have a problem with men telling me they like how I look (unless they do it with a leer or while they have their cocks in their hands) I do have a problem with them telling me how I should look. All of which is why I’ll be ready for the next demand that I “Smile, love!” and, believe me, it won’t just be my face that’ll be ugly. It’ll be the fact that it’ll take an entire police force to pull me off the fucker.

This entry was posted in Culture, Public, Sexism and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to All Mouth

  1. Leslie Brown says:

    I tend to take no prisoners when some random guy tells me to smile, ever since an absolute nobber commanded me thus as I was sitting on a train, on the brink of tears as I’d just heard my father had died.
    What sort of entitlement mentality makes ‘smile it might never happen’ the default response to someone obviously in distress?
    I used to ignore them mostly, but not any more.

  2. Halo says:

    I was buying the local paper the day after my Dad was killed in a road crash. It was the local front page news. Some chirpy bastard told me to “cheer up love, it might never happen!” At which point my face melted into tears and the checkout assistant who was serving me asked if I was alright. When I explained that the front page headline’s pedestrian was in fact my Dad, she stood up out of her seat and hugged me. I’ve been mentally searching faces every time I’ve been back in that neck of the woods to find that chirpy bastard so I can insert a copy of the local paper into his rectum. And then tell him to “cheer up, you miserable cunt” right afterwards.

  3. Laurasplog says:

    I was given feedback at an END OF YEAR REVIEW for a respected blue-chip company that it was felt I needed to smile more and to look like I enjoyed the work.

    I was not customer-facing, and fucking hated the job.

    That aside, could you EVER imagine “not smiling enough” being given to a man as feedback for justification why he wasn’t getting a pay rise?

    Cunts. Wish I’d stolen some Post-Its at least.

  4. Elspeth says:

    I worked as a barmaid for 2 years and there are barely enough fingers in the world to count how many times I was told by some half cut arsehole to smile.

    The bar is jammed, someone called in sick, I’ve been here for 6 hours already, I’ve got another 4 to go, my feet hurt, my head hurts, the sweat is running down the crack of my arse and several other places I won’t mention…. Smiling on demand for some prick who’s 1 drink away from being chucked out is at the very bottom of my list of “stuff to do at this moment.”

    And that doesn’t even begin to touch on the demands on the street/public transport/at the pub.

  5. Rootietoot says:

    I had a bail bondsman tell me to cheer up once. A bail bondsman who’d I’d just paid $200 to get my son out of jail. I stared at him and he said “ok maybe not.”

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