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Old 06-06-2015, 10:25 AM   #36
DanaC
We have to go back, Kate!
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Yorkshire
Posts: 25,492
Running the gauntlet. That's such a good way to put it.

I remember when i was about 11 years old, maybe coming up on 12 - my best mate and I often used to walk up the back street, from my house to a local park. There were several houses in that block which had been converted to bedsits, and mostly housed single men.

Running the gauntlet is exactly how that walk felt. Sometimes we'd shout something back (if we were feeling brave), often we'd just try to ignore them - our cheeks burning (poor Maddie got very embarrassed very easily and it always showed in a full-on red face).

The stuff they shouted to us - Jesus. If I caught a grown man saying stuff like that to one of my nieces I'd have the police involved in three seconds flat. But that was normal - that shit just happened. I look back at how young we both were, and how young we both looked, in our peddle-pushers and bright t-shirts - and it makes me feel a little queasy.

Likewise, walking down the street as school girls of 13 in our uniforms was like we'd flicked a red light on over our heads. You knew, as a girl that age, that the blokes on the building site on the way to school would make lewd comments or whistle. Cars would occasionally slow down so that men, not boys, men could comment and leer.

I'm not saying it happened constantly - but often enough for it to form a part of our understanding of the world in which we moved. Want to know what it feels like to be prey? Be an adolescent girl walking down the street of an ordinary industrial town in Britain.
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There's only so much punishment a man can take in pursuit of punani. - Sundae
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