I have just been travelling in Venice, it was hot and white. My friends and I walked around the city looking like a portable tv show. There was the guy who was writing a “style blog” that filmed us as we walked passed as was suitably affronted when I asked him to delete it, there was the family of the middle of the middle of whiteness who wanted to capture our coolness. Girl Bye. Generally, the attention was was pretty gross.
One day was filled with people of all genders struggling to take their eyes off my breast. It is quite impossible to not be conscious of oneself when your anonymity is being denied. There is only so long a chic can spend the day batting away looks, turning the volume down on the comments, and pretend that people are not consuming you and generally using you for their entertainment. So eventually, I shouted at one man to “fuck off” as he literally almost fell into my bustier and to another to leave me alone.
After 8 hours of this exhausting shit show, I found myself in the airport covering up after hours of being looked at, followed and made to feel uncomfortable I was physically tired. The idea of going through security was already horrific so I just put my hoody on fam. All this for a bustier, or some black breast, or my body or I’m not really sure why my body seems to bring with it silence, touching, stares, talking and touching.
As summer get’s closer and the wolf gets ever closer to the front door, I have been thinking about how I am going to manage this year. I am older than I am younger now and I have been dealing with being sexually harassed on the street for over two decades now. I fee tired. Walking out your house on a daily basis and making any attempt to live how you feel comfortable invites an onslaught of looks, touches, comments, and stares. I think many people think I want to be looked at and that I want the comments. Nah, I just like corsets and pink.
I started wearing a hat again this year. I used to wear that hat when I was 15, then as now I used to use it to hide. I often want to have invisibility, There is something simultaneously comforting and saddening to see myself using the same mechanisms to get through this shit show. I guess the world has changed as little as I have.