March 19th, 2008

Eroica

What is WRONG With Some Men?!

There have been only two times in the Sister-Unit's life when she has been alone on the side of the road with a flat tire. Both times a man has stopped to give her help she doesn't need (she is quite capable of changing a tire herself.) Both times the man has hit on her.

The first time was years ago, at night, and this man got so aggressive she had to lock herself inside her car to keep him off her. She carried mace for years after that.

The second time was yesterday afternoon, when she was on her way to work. Her right rear tire shredded. As she was starting to change it, a young man pulled over and offered to help. My sister is a strong woman, but in "social" situations she can be a doormat. She wanted him to go away, but to be polite she let him help. So he made sexual advances the whole time he worked, even asking to "take her home." At least this time it was broad daylight, and he kept his attempts to broad hints and sly touches... She gave him all her spare money ($8) as a clear "thank you" because she didn't want him to linger.

Guys, a damsel in distress (real or imagined) is not looking for a hot time with a knight in convenient armour. She just wants to get on her way. Women alone know they are considered targets and are fearful (or should be) of men who offer help. But some really need help, and can't turn an offer away.

Be a gentleman. Keep a respectable difference from her, don't hover. Talk about the situation, stay business-like.

Ladies, get AAA. Stay in your car and wait. Tell any Good Samaritans that help is on its way. If you end up with a "hero", stand back. He wants to work, let him. Some men think that a woman who stands within grabbing range is flirting with him. Keep your car door open -- if he approaches you, get in and lock it before he can get close enough to push you in and climb in with you. DO NOT GET INTO ANY CAR WITH A STRANGE MAN. Run, make lots of noise -- I'd rather take a bullet than let someone drive me away from rescue.

If this sounds a little hysterical, sorry. My sister was nearly molested. It makes me worry about my friends, too. It's a jungle out there...
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