Thursday, October 16, 2008

Mating Calls

I work near a bunch of construction sites in the city, so for the first time in my life, I got to watch some dirty guy in an orange vest and a hard hat whistling at a woman passing by. I didn't think anyone actually did that outside the movies and stereotypes. Catcalls are the perfect combination of ill-timed lust and laziness for failing to attract women, or anyone, really. Beagles and taxicabs, maybe, but a human being, with consciousness, already moving towards a destination? Please tell me no one has fallen for that since our neanderthal days.

But this dude whistled and the woman ignored him and his construction buddies were congratulating him and — okay, it's not about the woman; he's flaunting his masculinity to his co-workers. Fair enough.

The other day, same thing happened, but now I'm utterly baffled. This time it was a cab driver, maybe in his mid-fifties, no passengers, waiting for the light to change. Woman in her twenties walking the other direction, and the cab driver opened his window, stuck his head out, and called to her. "Hey girl, wanna ride?" or whatever generic substitute for charm and affection the pop stars are saying these days. The light turned green and he drove off.

I have no idea what the point of that was. "Dear Penthouse Forum: I never thought this would happen to me, but..." it didn't happen to him. Did he expect her to forget about wherever she was headed, turn around, and chase down his cab? I can only imagine his disappointment — another one got away. Damn that traffic light!