I’m not sure about the inclusion of this matter in my ‘Wot I Loved’ blog but the situation makes me laugh so much that I think I have to.
Somewhere along the line, I’ve become an old hag. OR if not that, at least completely invisible to young men. I live on the edge of a student area in Bristol and, between my house and the corner shop, I will normally pass at least four young men with fashionable haircuts and complex footwear. They are all called Matt or Tom and they look nice. Attractive,well-dressed and pretty manly, given that they are babies.
But here’s the thing: THEY DO NOT SEE ME. To them I am completely invisible. I am nothing. I am above their top age of sexual interest and I therefore might be eighty for all they care. I am Past It.
This weekend I was walking along to the postbox, wearing a nice skirt and stuff. I had sunglasses on, so you couldn’t see the wrinkles round my eyes, and I’d just dried my hair and put on some make up. I looked as good as I’m likely to look these days without five hours in makeup, and so, when I spotted a group of male students walking towards me, I prepared myself to be looked at.
I’ve never actually enjoyed these looks, it should be said. At best they’re embarrassing, at worst they invoke my natural feminist fury. But since the age of about fifteen, they’ve become a fact of life. I am in possession of a vagina, ergo I get looked at by men.
So. These lads. Walking towards me in a group; laughing and joking; young and good looking. I prepare to look away in embarrassment as they take a good look at me. Or to cross to the other side of the road. Or to (I’ve done this a few times) tell them to fucking well fuck off because I’m not a piece of beef.
But none of the above prove necessary, readers. They do not see me. They cannot see me. Even though they have to break ranks to let me pass on the pavement, they do not see me. I am just another old lady wandering around in the road. Probably lost, having escaped her nursing home.
I went out this morning, wearing LIPSTICK. And: same. A stream of them walking to university, all fresh and young and virile. And . . . nothing. I was nothing. They did not see me.
Fortunately, I am laughing about this. Laughing a lot. It’s a sad time, but a funny one.
And that’s about it. I should probably go back to my hairnets and talcum powder. Bye.
This blog is part of my Wot I Love series, which I started after recovering from ME. For more info, take a butchers at this.