The Day Some Men Decided To Discuss My Body Parts…

bartenderI wrote this after a conflict erupted on this blog some months ago but this story is relevant always.

I have always been upset by one person’s critical comments of another person’s body or appearance and have confronted it since I was a teenager.

I am 18 years old in that picture, I was a bartender. I was pretty cute little victim, you think? NOT.

I used to work in this old man’s bar (Saturn). It was a small place, most the customers were regulars but the bar was on one of the major arteries in the city and occasionally someone new would stop in.

One day this these two guys came in. They were younger than what was usual for the place, maybe 30 or 31. Remember I’m a teenager.

I got them their drinks and I can’t recall specifics but they started to piss me off right away. They just irked me with some kind of lecherous thing said under the breath or so I thought. I couldn’t be sure it had actually happened.

Based on that and the fact I was a TOTAL professional, I left it go. After all these were paying customers and I work for the boss, always.  So I ignored the thing and went back down the bar to where some of the regulars were… aka friendlier territory.

The two men had a another drink and perhaps another, each time I served them there was some kind of subtle exchange I didn’t like and each time I ignored it. Instead I offered them a nice smile, very hostess-y. I was pretty sure the whole bar was oblivious to what was going on but then it happened.

“Yeah, her breasts okay, I guess. They’ve got a nice shape but they could be a little bigger,” one of the men said as if he were whispering.

Well I’ll be fucking damned.

I was facing the cash register at the time and I spun around, slammed my hand down on the bar (Mars Mercury) – BAM!

“You don’t like my breasts? How about you put your dick and the bar and I’ll tell you what I think of it, son-of-a-bitch!”

The whole bar went silent. No one could believe what I said so I repeated it. “Right here”, I bellowed, cute face and all, again banging my hand in the spot where I thought the dick should go. “Let’s see the dick, you bastard!

Total silence, though by now the whole bar was staring at these two. The men squirmed for about 4 seconds, muttered something unintelligible and then got up and left and you see nothing has changed.

I have a pretty good bar here and I am in service but I have my limits. I think my limits are in reasonable places but if you think otherwise there are other bars.

People were appalled in the bar that day. The bar was full of men, I was the only women and each of them had a dick. You can just imagine the un-comfort.

My customers had to decide if I was an insane hothead or what. They might have thought so in the moment but fact is I’d been serving them all for a year or more and on a deeper level they knew better.

Do you defend yourself? If not, why not?

 

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The Day Some Men Decided To Discuss My Body Parts… — 80 Comments

  1. Oh Elsa!! I don’t have time to respond because I’ve gotta go start my Saturn in Virgo day. Just wanted to say how much I support you. Thank you for the dimples AND the depth!!

  2. Diana, there is a point where I just become fearless. If my book is ever published, I guess you’ll see why. Meantime every once in awhile you can witness and I think this is GOOD for people not otherwise.

  3. It fluctuates. Mostly because I’m not sure whether or not I’m under attack. If I *know* I’m under attack I hit back with pretty much everything I have though. Unless I feel bad about hitting back, and then I hit back only a little or I try to rise above so that its apparent to the world how small they are and how great I am (and yeah, I know thats kind of petty heh).

  4. You know, I didn’t feel one bit bad about that. MY total feeling was, ‘What? You think I am going to put up with that shit? Are you crazy?”

    It is not fault people misjudge me. It would be if I misrepresented myself but I don’t… especially on this blog.

  5. Man, but that’s great. Sometimes I worry I’m not witty enough to defend myself so I just let it go. I convince myself pretty easily that I don’t care so I shouldn’t defend myself. But I do! I just don’t have the balls to say anything!

  6. Oh my gosh that is so funny…

    Yahh uncomfort in the bar because you made them feel actual sexism…The men were wondering in there heads..Wow I don’t want to do that..
    What if I am not big enough..

    Basically you made them feel what its like to be objectified and judged like women are judged every day by boobs..

    I think you made a few feel empathy…

    Yaah I defend myself, my temper is legendary..
    It comes out rarely but when it does..

    Mars in Leo in the 12th is like a violent volcano.
    and then its gone..And having mercury so close to uranus both in virgo..It comes out in a viper like direct fast spewing verbal strait to the problem dialogue..

  7. Well I do have the balls and there is literally a point where I will fight you to death. ‘Course I imagine people can see this in the eyes and they tend to opt out.

  8. “‘Course I imagine people can see this in the eyes and they tend to opt out.”

    It saves a lot of trouble doesn’t it? I am very rarely challenged but I am completely willing to fight if it comes to it.

  9. Hi Elsa – My problem is I always defend myself, in spades, and then some. This is something I have been trying to work on. Pluto entering my 3rd seems to have made me determined to get my thoughts under control. God knows I will never become a doormat, but I need to really get the assertive vs aggressive thing under control. Becoming a mother toned it down a bit (just a bit), but my initial inner reaction is always to lash out at any perceived attack/affront, rudeness, etc. I do not go around starting fights – I am never mean or nasty just for the hell of it, believe me. My lashing out is always in reaction – to rudeness, aggressiveness, etc. God help anyone who yells at me – holy shit, I let them have it.

  10. GOOD FOR YOU. Nothing to apologize for. Ever. Yes I do defend myself. And I don’t put up with any whining and sniveling while I’m doing it, either. You don’t like the heat baby, then stop fucking around in my kitchen!!!

    (Mars in Aries opposed Pluto square Moon)

  11. that’s one thing i’ve always respected about you… let alone appreciated for the example.

    niceness is overvalued when it opens us up to being doormats.

    i defend myself when i feel i have to. which i’m discovering i should probably do more often.

  12. One of my guy pals told me about a turning point in his marriage, when his wife and best friend was expressing her anger, and he reacted by moping and slumping, and she turned to him and said, “do you KNOW what it’s like for me to see you slump like that? I am not a monster and if you go around acting like I am a monster then we are not a worthy match.” And he said in an instant, he grew up into the man he always he knew he could be. Now THAT’S a man who respects women.

  13. I had neither balls nor a sense of who I was when I was 18, so I have no idea how I would have reacted to something like that at that age. I have to say I admire your comeback. I bet those two knuckleheads thought twice about ever doing that crap again.

    I did manage to defend myself and escape a physical attack when I was 17, but that’s a horse of a different color.

  14. These kind of attacks are always depraved, and if the cowards use a public space thinking they will get away with it, they deserve to be exposed right there, in public.

  15. I can defend myself, but like anabanana said, it is often covert.

    When it isn’t covert, it’s a sight to behold. I have no hot button, exactly; I just simmer until I am so angry I literally see red. I seethe. And when I get that angry, the person pays, although not directly by me. I have no idea how that works, but it’s something that came down from my grandmother. I sure wish I could learn to channel that for world peace.

  16. I hardly defend myself because it actually pisses the other party off even more, to the point where they hurt themselves focusing on me. They forget about their priorities wondering just how much more I’m going to take of their crap, it’s also because no vengeance I partake in is going to help me in the long run. In other words I can’t just defend myself sometimes things can be taken too far, so I tend to keep silent I know what I want and I am going for it. Not drama, can’t afford it. Too high of a price, but for all of the people that hate me because of what someone told them. I feel like I’ve got thousands of people that shame me I can give a damn If I gather a couple of thousand more; especially off of lies or bullshit that shouldn’t matter to a stranger i.e. someone you don’t know. My main reason though is, I ‘m thinking about my next life, and I’m not suicidal just damn smart.

  17. WHaaat? Do you mean to tell me that those guys didn’t just take one look at you, realize you’re italian, and RUN.

    I have italian women in the extended family and they have nicknames like “the general” “the little general” “the boss” etc. etc. NO ONE messes with them.

    Too funny. You don’t look like a cute victim to me.

  18. Mud – I was thinking about this and what struck me is how times have changed. Disrespect me and meet Jesus. Now these girls can’t wait to put their crotchs all over the internet. I can’t help it, I think it lacks class. CHEEEEEEEEEEEEEEAP.

  19. Elsa – yes, the same occurs to me even though I’m a part of that generation in some ways. I guess I just really value my privacy and intimacy with one person. That I’m special to him and he’s special to me is very important in my world.

    Maybe it’s the outcome of the aids scare after all of the free-love-peace sex of the 70s. Instead of giving your love you “show” your love? But that doesn’t make sense as it doesn’t strike me as love but as commercial/business gain.

    hrm. Here’s to hoping that capricorn pluto brings back some class. Every woman I know longs for hats and 1940’s outfits where women were pretty, classy and strong in a strange way. Speaking of hats – I discovered the wonders of wool felt with a brim – NO SNOW on your face when it’s comin’ down fast and furious. 🙂

  20. You betcha. I have a Scorpio male “friend” who insists on getting inside everyone’s head. Nooooo, it’s not because he cares, it’s because he wants to demonstrate his mental/intuitive prowess and needs an ego boost. Thing is, he’s wrong most of the time. He pulled this shit on me for the last time last week (got my motivations wrong AGAIN) and I had this to say:

    “I do want to stay friends, but I also have some boundaries that aren’t likely to dissolve anytime soon. Which can be outlined:

    1) Nobody gets inside my head without an invitation.
    2) If you insist on barging in anyway, your assumptions had better be correct.

    I think we can work through our tendencies and idiosyncrasies. I promise to try my best. :-)”

    Haven’t heard from this amateur psychoanalyst in a week. You see, in my experience, people who try to “figure you out” and tell you so aren’t doing so out of love; they’re doing it to display their mental/intuitive agility and quite probably fishing for an ego boost in the process. Those who really want to get inside your head because they innocently want to understand you will, well, ask how you feel. I’m nobody’s mental gymnasium, not even for a Scorpio.

    Thanks, I needed to vent. What an asshole.

  21. Sorry, forgot to edit. I repeated a lot in the last paragraph that had already been said in the first. Oh well!

    Elsa, I hope you and your brass balls aren’t freezing up there tonight!

  22. LOL, that was awesome! And funny, too!;)
    I was in my late 20’s before I got to where you were as a teenager… Kudos, lots and lots:)

    And Merry Christmas!:) Wish you and your family a fun, joyful and relaxing holiday:)

  23. honey,
    I will remember that one, it is perfect. Kudos to you and your sense of self at such a young age. Perfect.

    You have given many a woman a perfect answer to the never ending T and A harrassment.

    much thanks to you!

  24. Elsa, you’re pics always remind me of Ashley Judd, gorgeous!!

    Heck yes I defend myself, and others too. I just despise disrespect…who do you think you are???

  25. “‘Course I imagine people can see this in the eyes and they tend to opt out.”

    When I was 17, I was alone at my girlfriend’s house while she was at school. I skipped classes that day. Her truck driver dad came home unexpectedly during his usual work time. I was sitting on the couch when he hurried over, knelt before me and told me to show him my breasts. I said “no” and didn’t budge. I was 5’0 and 100 lbs. He demanded that I show him my breasts again, I repeated NO! and stared at him. Suddenly he looked frightened and said “okay, okay . . . just don’t look at me with those eyes” and literally ran out of the house. Later, I learned he’d been sexually molesting his daughter, my friend. When I told her what happened, she actually said she was glad it had happened to me and not to our other girlfriends because they couldn’t handle it! Cap rising with Chiron on ascendent

  26. i never heard this kind of thing from men. even obnoxious drunk fools.
    women, on the other hand, do it a lot. just in a different way. snide whispers just loud enough that everyone can hear them. constantly trying to break someone down. and, yeah, no one can stand up to that sort of scrutiny without someone finding a reason to fault them. if nothing else… “she’s so hot, i bet she’s a stuck up B*tch.”

    …there is a sort of guy out there, though, that will abuse a woman’s (culturally ingrained) tendency to try to appear nice and at some point it seems, you have to tell them to piss off. repeatedly. because nothing else will get through.
    took me awhile to realize this though.
    i think people tend to think i’m an easy target. neptune square pisces mars? and, well, i try hard to be nice and forgiving until someone hits a boundary and then, bam! a little explosive, then :/
    took me awhile to bring in the boundaries to places that made sense. i honestly couldn’t believe people were trying to do the things they were trying to do until there was no way to ignore it. ignored my intincts in that regard. have figured out quite a bit over time about what it means when i get that feeling about someone, though. tricky business that. don’t want to be paranoid and constantly mistrusting people… i try to believe the best until i know otherwise…

    i don’t think you grew up in that same culture though 😉

  27. i think maybe my virgo ascendant puts off that kind of commenting from men. don’t know. the whole aura of innocence.
    i’m sure all kinds of things get said when i’m not around. but that’s a form of male discourse and it’s not my responsibility to deal with it if i don’t know about it.

  28. wyrdling i haven’t heard that kind of whispering since high school. on the other hand i have worked in bars and heard that from men all the time.
    booze…it’s a real bummer.

  29. Oh yes… I will defend myself. Like Elsa, I’ll give the person the benefit of the doubt until I know for sure they’re crossing the line, and then I let them have it!

  30. oh, gosh, i’ve spent time around women who did that kind of thing at advanced ages… 🙁

    maybe it’s the bars i go to. i usually hang around in places where i have a couple intimidating male friends around… most definitely a subconscious defensive tactic…

  31. i’m sorry, i’m not trying to discount your experience, w.:(

    I come from the 4th generation of 3+ daughters (only daughters!) on my maternal side of the family.
    i guess i’ve had enough of the dark side to last me a zillion lifetimes so i got lucky this time round.

    i know this type of bashing exists, just not anyone remotely close to me…though i was called a dyke once in 1998 because i was chewing an icecube, lol
    …hope this clarifies…i definitely believe you when you say this is your experience.

  32. i’m in a playful, mischievous, laughing mood/mode today for some reason… and that made ~me~ laugh too (i happen to ~be~ a dyke)

    😀

    (this week hasn’t been a week for laughter, so me laughing today is good 😉 )

  33. I do not defend myself. I was taught to take what comes. I will defend others, mostly just my husband. Occasionally a parent. But that’s about it. I do try and present a reasonable side when someone says something unintellegent about someone else. Everyone forgets that everyone else is human too. We all have bad days or moments, make mistakes, misunderstand. Everyone has flaws, some may seem to have bigger ones, but they are just different ones.

  34. This is still so badass, Elsa!
    You are better looking than Ashley Judd.
    Del is also a badass.
    kashmiri-what is this stereotype, dykes chewing ice cubes?
    I’ve heard the one about them wearing comfortable shoes.

  35. Good for you Elsa, you sure are quick, I love this story! I’m trying to learn to defend myself that well, I usually only think of a good comeback to rude comments well after the ‘event’.

  36. Hats of to you Elsa, I hope i will have such courage someday, i have always avoided such situations.I am learning how to defend myself assertively.

  37. I do defend myself now, but I didn’t used to;
    the reason is because I’m not good at arguing with someone: I’ll just kill the conversation (scorpio mars).
    My angry mars does not come out often, but when it does there’s no reply to that.

  38. Oh Elsa I love this story! I was a bartender for many years, and wholeheartedly approve of your handling of those nincompoops.

    It reminds me of a time I was working at a busy bar in SF… my co-worker, also my friend, was busy and had some exchange with two guys sitting in front of the well. I was mixing a drink (an Absolut cosmo, I remember), and as she walked away, one said to the other, loudly, “What a f***ing bitch”. Well… suddenly the shaker in my hand was flinging that cosmo right in his face. Oops. He was mad, but his friend was rightly afraid and got him to high-tail it out of there, stat.

    Not proud, but still somehow glad I did it. I guess the Aries warrior in me will always defend those I love, ferociously.

  39. this story is AWESOME Elsa! I think I don’t defend myself as much as I should b/c I would never think twice to speak back to others since I’ve had a lot of limitations growing up. Mom (Cap) was tough and at times a totalitarian… I went to catholic school (grammar & high) where a endless number of restrictions applied and it is only now that I’ve learned to break out of that shell. I think of things to say AFTER the fact but in the heat of the moment I become like a deer in headlights & try to run away after being hit. I’m looking forward to the day I can let loose and open a can of whip ass on someone who dares to tread on me!

  40. I never defended myself.. up til about six months ago, but I’m nowhere near witty enough to say something like that. Feels good to have some balls growing though, but someday I’ll have some like you Elsa; right on!

  41. I think your response was great!
    I have always defended myself. However, sometimes it has gotten me in trouble. I have a 26 year old daughter who always defends herself, but sometimes it tends to get her in trouble.

  42. Cancer sun in the 12th and like spacerockz, catholic school raised, still can’t contain mars conjunct mercury & asc in the cardinal 1st house sextile by pluto. I’m wondering if this is because of my cappy moon, as I will stand up for myself, for kids, and for women or men that can’t seem to do it for themselves. Seems like a father figure/authority kind of thing brought on by my emotions (moon in capricorn)

    LOL at the hand slam! I do that all the time, when things are ready to come out, I’ll get their attention and they WILL hear me (I’m normally soft spoken), except I’ve learned not to use my hand-it hurts- use a nice hard/loud object to make the noise/ get the attention. LOL!
    Angie

  43. Well, I haven’t had too many occasions where I’ve had to defend myself… or rather.. most of the time… if something has bothered me.. I typically let it go, IF it’s someone or something I’m not going to see much or again. I’m pretty much like.. “whatever” lol.
    There have been occasions where I’ve had to defend myself with ferocity… and I have done so, with good effect. Thankfully that has only happened a few times in my life.
    My favorite defense to this day is turning the tables in a sorta fun, light hearted manner, but in which they still get the clue…. I have used this in situations, like at a workplace, where I know I’m going to see someone day after day. lol.
    Case in point.. I used to work in the school cafeteria in college.. there was this dude there.. we were friendly enough, talking and joking.. well ok.. He took to calling me Hooters (yeah that’s right I have big boobs.. lol big deal) ANYWAY…for a while I’m laughing it off, big deal right? It’s just a stupid nickname and well.. it IS descriptive yeah? lol After a while though and he’s calling me this in front of my other co-workers.. he has officially crossed the line.. lol.. so.. one day I go in… there’s a group of workers around and this guy… he of course says “Hi Hooters” or whatever… I whip back “Well Hi There Scrotum!, How’s it going?” LOLOL nice and loud so everyone can hear. Ummmmm Yeah, he never called me Hooters again. 😉

  44. Elsa,

    When I was 15 there was this good looking guy named Joey who was always picking on smaller kids in school. One kid he picked up and put him in a trash can during lunch and teachers did nothing about it. He was a menace to everyone including teachers.

    Anyway one day, during Study Hall, he started his usual picking on the other kids routine and again the teacher just left the room so they could ignore the behavior and not address it. And Joey decided to pick on me.

    I did not do anything to provoke him, he was bigger than me and I didn’t want trouble. I was sitting at a table with 5 other boys sitting at the same table when Joey decided since he couldn’t get a rise out of me then he would start to pick on the other boys. The other boys were even smaller than me.

    I finally decided I had enough and I got soooo mad I stood up real fast (just as the teacher walked back in the door) and hauled off and socked Joey with everything I had. Joey didn’t move. It was like hitting a brick wall. And I knew I was in deep trouble and waited for the return blow. But it never came. Joey just stood there with shock and disbelief on his face. The teacher just smiled and turned right back around and walked out the door again.

    Joey never picked on anyone ever again. I was a hero to many and I couldn’t believe what I did myself.

    Just thought you’d enjoy this story.

    Be Blessed!!

  45. Yes I will. I have Mercury in Sag conj. Saturn and Square Pluto so if I get angry enough…and with semi-sextil to my Mars in Scorpio I see it as I will use some serious words to blow you away and I will use them with the aim of my stinger to go exactly where I want to them to be effective to not only wake you up but to make sure you never do that again.

  46. @Mark – good for you!!

    @Elsa, When I was bartending/cocktailing, guys would sometimes say things under their breath too- but, what really crossed the line, was if they actually touched me. I had a standard comeback that worked every time… (In an Irish brogue) “Try that again, and you’ll be pull’n back a bloody stump, ya will!”

  47. @Carrie… I’ve been to Ireland and some of my best moments were in pubs, at the twilight of the day. Loved the warm spirit of those places. If I could wish for a great comeback it would employ humor and shock, as yours above did.

    Kudos to you Mark… that was awesome.

  48. This is a very funny story! l try to defend myself and others. l have no problem with strangers…
    but people l know or some relatives can block me sometimes and it hits me later.
    Depends on the situation and people…

  49. So many comments! Seems it´s been miles i´ve scrolled down now 😉

    GREAT ONE, Elsa! Mars-Mercury…*smile*

    Just one more story from me: i was working in a bar in the Hamburg red light district off Reeperbahn when i was 23. The place was called “London Pub”, very small, very red light still, so it attracted all kinds of english speaking people.
    One day a bunch of American army soldiers came in on their day off – highest grade and the one in charge was a sergeant, i remember. He desperately tried to get the guys to behave, but to no avail really, so i had to take over and manage the crowd (about ten of them). As i was alone behind the bar and we had two rooms for people to get served, i had to be here AND there. So one of the guys speeded behind the bar and stole the glasses, one by one. Put them in his crotch… When i finally saw him do that (i would have to pay for all that was missing), the sergeant whispered to me to just let him, he (sergeant) would give me the stolen items´worth back. Of course i charged him doubly…;-) But – i´m not good at playing dumb and i never was, so finally i grabbed the thief -to his surprise! – pushed him against the wall, reached down into his pants, pulled the glass out and said VERY loudly: ” I figured yours wasn´t THAT big!!”

    Spoiled the fun for him, but sure raised it way up high for his comrades!

  50. I’m a long time lurker and first time poster. All I can say BRAVO!!! I would do the same, I have Natal Pluto in 12th house. I’ve been taught since I was young to never start a fight but never back down either. I will definitely tell your story this Thanksgiving to relatives (in-laws) and BFF (best FREMIES forever). This will be my ICEBREAKER after a cocktail of KLONOPIN:-) Wish me luck.

    p.s. I love your pix

  51. As someone who’s been in the restaurant biz, that was A-W-E-S-O-M-E!! Your response was completely appropriate start to finish.

    Once when I was waiting tables, a loud man was bragging about the size of his penis as I was walking up to the table. He turned and asked me if the restaurant had a ruler and I quickly said, “No, but we do have a flashlight.” The ladies howled and he sat down and shut up. Ha!

  52. I personally think that this is a great story. I also see why you would go off on those two jerks. I have never cared for conversation about a persons body parts no matter what their gender. Other than saying wow that person has a beautiful smile weather they are male or female is one thing but discussing some one as if they were up for sale or something that should never be done. It is beyond rude in my opinion. Rudeness should not be tolerated ever especially after a point. There is always a point of no return and once past that the person in question should defend themselves or they will be run over always. At least that is the way I see it.

    Oh and by the way great picture if you were 18/19 years old in that picture then you have not aged much at all same beautiful lady now as you were back then.

  53. Gorgeous then and gorgeous now! I applaud you for what you did because they needed to know it wasn’t acceptable to treat you the way they did. There’s a certain point at which you can’t allow others to walk all over you.

    I’m a Libra (obvs), but my rising sign is Scorpio, so I think it makes up for the so-called wishy-washiness others seem to think Librans have. Like anyone else, I don’t like confrontations, but when necessary, I will step up to the plate. And when I do, watch out, because that Scorpionic sting will come out when needed. I don’t use it willy-nilly, but neither will I be pushed into a corner to tolerate the intolerable.

  54. This is great food for thought. I’m pretty flat chested so I don’t get much in the way of leering about my body parts. I would have said that I let most things go, but Mark’s post just reminded me of something that I haven’t thought about in probably two decades.

    In junior high we had two class bullies. They were girls, they were twins and they were merciless – I got a lot of flack from them both. I was a bookish, pretty awkward kid. One day, in woodwork, twin number one announced to the class that I had started my period. She started pretty quiet, then got a little louder, then louder – and I finally snapped. Was holding a woodwork mallet and clocked her on the shoulder.

    I was a) in total shock at what I’d done and b) expecting to be sent to the principal. Whole class went silent and she started wailing. The teacher came over, she told him I had hit her and he said I probably didn’t mean it (I really did, even though it was wildly out of character – I was on the debate team) and that maybe she should move to another bench.

    Neither she nor her sister ever bothered me again. So I guess I do have boundaries.

  55. BRAVO, Elsa. Men need to learn that it’s NOT ok to judge a woman by her body parts, nor is it acceptable to make comments like that in public. Also – WOMEN need to stop judging other women by their shape, weight, clothes, haircut and accessories!

  56. OMG that has to be one of the most brilliant comebacks EVER Lmao!!!!! Elsa, youre amazing. Seriously. I would have never thought to say that, and if I did, I dont know that I’d have your guts at 18!

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