We discuss street harassment pretty often on this site, as it is a frustrating and sometimes frightning occurence that most women encounter far too often. However, as infuriating as a lewd remark can be, there is one slighty more harmless line in particular that just makes my blood boil.

Say you’re walking down 125th, Stony Island, Georgia Avenue or whatever street that sits in proximity to your city’s local boulevard named for a dead Black activist who would be embarrassed to have that street named after him… and here comes Knuck Knuck, Pookie’nem. Pookie says “Ay, ma! Can I talk to you for a second?” and you, being polite and disinterested in being 1) Pookie baby muva and 2) cursed out, say “I’m sorry, but I have a man.” You would think Pookie would say “Oh, aiiight” and keep it moving. But that’s not Pookie. Pookie’s got ambition baby, look in his eyes…”What, your man don’t let you have friends?”

GOTDAMMIT, POOKIE!  How you just gonna disrespect her relationship like that? If the first thing out of a woman’s mouth is “I got a man”, that means one of two things: she got a man or she just doesn’t want to talk to you. How are you going to challenge a woman when she tells you she’s in a relationship? She don’t WANT to be your friend! If she did, she wouldn’t have lied about having a boyfriend! This is the type of stuff that renders the validations of patriarchy null and void; people this stupid don’t deserve to run the world. This isn’t fortitude, Pookie! This is being an annoying jack*ass! What do you mean her man don’t “let” her have friends? Do you see him there? No. SHE told you on her own that she didn’t want to accept your info and you kept going? Shame.

Pookie isn’t the only one who doesn’t know how to process the “not single” reveal; his cousin, Marcus, who works at First Capitalism National Bank as a VP, manages to come up with a similar response (despite the fact that he only speaks to his cuz at family gatherings, they manage to be so alike…imagine that): “So, does that mean you can’t have any friends?” He doesn’t jazz it up with “Ya man type jealous like that?” like his cousin does, but the annoyance factor is still high.

For some reason, these guys don’t understand that “I have a man” is an easy, polite out for a single woman who just doesn’t want to talk to them (and the obvious answer for a spoken-for girl).  ClutchLadies and Clutch Gents, please make sure that the men in your life understand what that means so that they don’t clown themselves ever (or ever again) by using such a foolish response to a remark that very obviously means “leave me be.”

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  • CaliDreaming86

    Men are just dumb like that. I’ve had men TELL me that I must not be interested in talking to them for the following reasons: I must be married, already have a boyfriend, think they are ugly, had a bad day at work, scared to talk to them, etc etc. Never do they assume it is because I am not attracted to them an/or interested in talking to them.

    A few months ago, a guy who I went to high school with asked me to hang out, but only if I didn’t have a boyfriend. Even if I did, why wouldn’t we be able to hang out? I am tired of the idea that men and women cannot be platonic friends. Like, as a Black woman if I am hanging out with a Black man (which doesn’t happen really) then people assume we are together. If I am hanging out with my white guy friend, nobody assumes anything.

  • the_unforgiven

    The “pretend boyfriend” is a bit sad, god forbid you also be one of the same women who complain about being single. Walking around with a “make believe” Prince Charming in order to reject everyguy who comes your way is a bit sad.

    To each her own, no judgement. Its an annoyance, so be it.

    From the title I thought this article was about the bfs that get jealous of his lady’s guy friends etc. That would be a good rant, but ranting about the street urchins you find is… um… a little demeaning to yourself (women), pointless, and a lil self-centered don’t you think?

    Maybe I’d have to be a woman, but I’m rarely just walking the streets, or rarely in an establishment not populated by the kinds of women who are like me. And even if a woman I’m uninterested in approaches me, the first thing to come to mind ISN’T figuring out a way to lie to this person because they are unworthy of my greatness, isn’t it so annoying someone has taken an interest in me. sheesh.

    Perhaps its a woman-thing I won’t understand. ah well.