Is The City Really Any Safer?

A while back I headed home to Brooklyn from Manhattan on the unreliable NYC subway. It was late at night. I don't remember how late. There were a substantial number of people on the train so I'm guessing more like 1am than 4am. A bunch of people get off at the 7th Avenue stop in Brooklyn, myself included. We all begin our foot journey home.

As I walk home I try to keep pace with the pack of people who have just left the subway station. I'm small with shorter legs than most so I trail the pack slightly but I am in it's sphere. I notice the dude (of average height) in front of me looks back to see if anyone's following him home. Bravo, sir for being street smart. We walk several more paces and he looks back again. This time he speaks. "Can you walk in front of me. You're making me very uncomfortable. Please (obnoxiously), go ahead." I look behind me. There is no one there. He makes his demand again. I think to myself, "Me? You want me at 5ft 1inches weighing in around 105lbs to walk in front of you because I'm making you nervous? Are you serious? I can't walk in front of you because your pace is such that my significantly smaller legs can't keep up with you all in front of me. If you're scared of me, maybe it's time you moved back to Witchita or whatever crime free place your from." I didn't say that out loud, instead I said, "What?"
He replied briskly, "Please. move ahead."

How is this full grown man scared of me it defies logic. You'd think if there was a wave of muggings committed by midgets and petite females I would have heard about it in the news. It wasn't like I was dressed in Ninja garb or that I was in my paranoid glory carying a large stick with me around the city. Maybe his younger sister spent their childhood beating him up. Maybe his mother was 4ft 11 inches and chased him around the house with a rolling pin. I don't know.

I walked in front of him. And then I thought, I bet this is a ploy so that he can mug me. At this point I invited such a turn of events. His obnoxious tone of voice had thoroughly pissed me off. If he had tried anything I was going to kick his ass. And so here's a tip for men out there looking for gender equality. In general men don't get attacked by a lone female they don't know. But if you fear that it's your night to be struck by criminal lightning here are some ideas of how to prevent an attack. Look behind yourself. If you see someone you suspect is up to no good take any number of actions. I walk faster. I cross the street. I hop into a cab. I go into a bar. I stop in a bodega. You know what I don't do? Talk to my possible assailant.


myka said…
When I'm afriad someone is going to attack me I scream obscenities into the night so that they will think I'm a homeless crazy person capable of doing anything.