Don't Talk To Me
July 11, 2012 9:48 PM Subscribe
How do I deal with strange men who talk to me...even though they're not directly hitting on me, I can just tell the conversation is going to be a 'special' one?
posted by lhude sing cuccu to Society & Culture (68 answers total) 20 users marked this as a favorite
I'm 21/f. I've lived in New York for less than two months, and already I've been approached twice. I used to be approached all the time back when I was 18 and lived in Chicago, and it was pretty much 99% older men asking me watcha reading and stuff. But New York guys are seriously direct...they ask me "where I just came from" and "what I'm doing in this neighborhood," like WTF?
Example One. I was walking down the street (Brooklyn, mid-day) and I saw this Jewish guy in his 30's walking in my direction, and he was like "do you have a clip cause my kippah keeps falling off," which admittedly it was. So I gave him one cause I am a very nice person. But then he kept following me down the street. First he asked me if there were any Jewish places in the neighborhood, and I was like "I'm not from here." He also asked me directions to a certain street I don't know. I directed him to the subway. I was very friendly. I look pretty religiously Jewish, so I thought he was just happy to find a Jew to talk to or something. But then he asked me "So how is yeshiva? Where do you go?" like he was just some old friend, like WTF?? He also asked "Are you Ashkenasic or Sephardic?" Why? Why would he ask this? So finally we got to the subway, and I was like "Well, the subway's there but I have to go into this store, good luck," and hid out inside the store until I thought he was gone. He literally kept following me down the street like we were old friends or something.
Example Two. I was waiting for the subway (Brooklyn) around 9:30 PM, and all the seats on the platform were taken except for the one next to me. I had my backpack on the seat, so this old guy said "Excuse me" and I moved it. He said "I'm sorry," which is just weird cause just sit if you're going to sit, why are you apologizing. This loud siren started going off, which apparently signals the train is coming. He asked me what the siren was, and I said "That means the train is coming." "Oh, OK." To my other side was this girl my age on her cell phone. "Are you with her?" He asked. "No." Ten seconds later. "So, what were you doing in the city? Are you in school there?" Luckily the train magically came just at that moment.
BUT WHAT THE HELL. First of all, why's everyone trying to ask me how school is? Are these guys my grandpas or something? Is this how they pick young girls up? At first, I think they're just being friendly, but frankly I don't think these "friendly" conversations happen man-to-man...I think they're reserved for young girls. There's really no reason to be asking such personal questions on a subway platform.
Second of all, how can I shut them down? I don't want them talking to me and I just don't want it to go there. But at the same time, when I try to ignore them they'll just go "Excuse me, did you hear me?" What can I do when I can't get away? For instance, I'm on the subway platform or I'm already walking and he's actually already FOLLOWING me? I intentionally don't try to appear approachable, but once someone starts talking to me I am reasonably friendly just cause sometimes they really are just normal people asking for directions. Once they start asking personal questions, though, I start pretending I don't hear them...but they just repeat their question until I answer it. That's really the only thing I can think of.
I can't just be like "sorry, not interested," cause they haven't actually said anything that sketchy yet or actually said anything referring to sex/dating/phone numbers.
Also please don't answer if you're just going to say "well, tha's just the way life is." That is not helpful. I need solutions.