Sunday, 15 March 2015

#1 Sunday Segment: Catcalling and Creepy Men.

Allow me to introduce you to a new weekly feature that I am adding to this blog entitled Sunday Segment - not the most imaginative of names, I know, but it's all I've got so far. If you have any other suggests then send them my way. This feature is going to be home to a multitude of things that I would like to share and discuss be it reviews, poetry, silly cat videos... this will be the space for it. 

Today I was inspired by recent posts written by Katie (Buddle and Squeak) and Annika (The Pineneedle Collective) on their blogs tackling the issue of cat calling and creepy men. Reading about their experiences angered me to know that such lowly derogatory behaviour is still prevalent in today's world. It also made me reflect on my personal experiences since starting my year abroad.   

When I arrived here in Montpellier at the beginning of September it was hot, like really hot. My days on English beaches paled in comparison to the intensity of the French sun. Naturally shorts and T-shirt combos were a must. I found, however, that along with baring more skin came bearing the brunt of more unwanted male attention. I brushed the ogling aside and just took it as part of living in a big city and something that I would have to learn to ignore. 

There are so many things wrong with the statement I just made, and I shall get back to that in just a moment. 

One of the first instances of sexual harassment I experienced took place merely weeks after my initial arrival. It was a week-day, early evening, with the sun still shining in the busiest area of Montpellier: Place de la Comedie. Walking briskly to meet my friends I became aware of a presence to my left which, glancing at, I saw was a 30-something man smiling at me like I was his next meal. Deciding to ignore him I moved my legs as fast as they'd carry me; being 5ft 2ins it wasn't very fast at all. 

Said man continued to walk next to me and said hello to me in French to which I replied, with the worst French accent I could muster "Pardon, je ne parle pas le francais". I thought that would be it. I thought he would leave me alone. Much to my dismay he then began talking to me in English telling me how sexy my arse was and how much he wanted to fuck me (I kid you not). I still tried to brush it aside telling him I already had a boyfriend and attempted to get away from him. He still persisted however, gesturing with his hands how big his dick was and how great it was going to be to fuck me. Spotting my friends not far off I still tried to laugh it off and bid him goodbye. It wasn't until I actually greeted my very confused friends that he went away. Even then I only think he left because one of them was male. 

It absolutely sickens me when I think about it and in many ways I still cannot believe it actually happened. What's worse is a couple days later he passed me in the street, once again throwing an onslaught of cat calls and insults my way.

Perfectly sums up my feelings (source)

And yet my only reaction was to do nothing. I tried to laugh it off. Brush it aside. Not make a big deal out of it. And worst of all I accepted it. I was shocked yet it wasn't anything out of the ordinary as I had learnt to deal with it. This is where I rectify my previous statement. This behavior should not be ordinary and should not have to be learnt to deal with. This man in particular, though unfortunately among many others, felt it was his right to treat me the way he did. He saw something he desired and saw no problem with aggressively trying to obtain it. It was obvious he had no filter to determine what was inappropriate behaviour and if anything actually got a kick out of making me feel uncomfortable. 

It's creeps like this that spoil men and masculinity. They need to undergo a serious attitude change needed for the necessary leap towards equality.  To quote Crystal Eastman hailing from the 1920s "we must institute a revolution in the early training and education of both boys and girls". In other words, it is the attitudes of the younger generations that need to be fed with ideas of feminism in order to birth a world of equality. What is alarming is that Crystal knew this just under a 100 years ago and not much has really changed. Us feminists are still wading through custard on the path towards equality, and we're slowly getting there. However, it is the attitudes and mind sets of people that we really need to change. Once we do we can come off the custard path, but only then. 

Thursday, 12 March 2015

White Tee and Yellow Skirt.

T-Shirt - Mango 
Skirt - Flea Market
Belt - Vintage
Converse - eBay

If you recognise these items then go ahead and give yourself a pat on the back for sitting through my ridiculously long haul video. Well done, you made it. If not (why not?), let me introduce you to a couple of new items that have joined my ever expanding wardrobe. This skirt in particular is a new firm favourite that I couldn't stop smiling about after I found it at the flea market - I beg you not to take any notice of my frowning visage in these pictures. I snapped this lovely item up for a meager €2 and thought that the colour and print were fantastic, so really, it would have been rude not to take it home with me. Colour is something I am always willing to add to my outfits as I try to avoid falling into the trap of wearing black all the time. Though having said that, an all black outfit is so chic. However, as Spring is beginning to pop its sunny head round the corner I thought there couldn't be a more perfect skirt to add to my erupting grandma-skirt collection.  

Counteracting the sweet-little-old-lady-ness of this skirt is my rebellious choice of T-shirt. I say rebellious as I actually wore this on a Tuesday. Stand back people, we've got a real thug coming through. Gold teeth and knuckledusters aside, I rather enjoy this top for it's fun factor and it's simplicity. As I mentioned in my haul video, after I saw this beauty was only a tenner (can I still say a tenner with euros? Is it just a British thing??) I couldn't put it back on the rail. I've found my wardrobe lacks a white tee from time to time and thought buying one was well overdue. Also, it's not a crop top. For once I actually bought a whole top rather than just half of one. I may have to rethink my blog title. Lol jks. 

I brought the whole outfit together with my go-to vintage black belt and battered old converse. I did also throw my new denim jacket over the top but forgot to take pictures (oops). I have only had these converses for little over a year now and I'm so disappointed in how distressed they already look. Granted I did buy them second-hand off eBay but they were in such good condition they were practically new. Does anyone else find their converses get wrecked super quick? I'm thinking of buying a new pair once back in England and trying to find someway of looking after them properly. If anyone has any tips on keeping converses looking spic-and-span then do help a sista out. 

Django Django is a recent discovery that I cannot get enough of. They're also releasing a new album next month after being dormant for 3 years, so expect to see them featured on here again! 

Sunday, 1 March 2015

Returning With A Haul.

Hello everyone. After being very absent from the blogging world due to life just getting in the way. I am finally hoping to get back into the swing of things starting with this little haul video here - well it's not little but you catch my drift. Hope you enjoy this and i'll see you in my next post! 

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