Let me tell you one small something that happened yesterday morning.

As I alighted from the bus that conveyed me to my work place, a young man was making cat calls. Me, I almost never respond to anyone making psst sounds at me. If you can’t politely call out ‘hello’ or ‘excuse me, please’, then forget the message. But this one was persistent and as though he read my thoughts, he switched to ‘Excuse me!’ So I grinned to myself and turned back to him. He moved closer and pointed at my chest, muttering some words.

Man. You should see the little rush of embarrassment that ran through me as I looked down at my shirt and noticed that all the buttons on my chest region flapped open! And there was no camisole! And I cannot wear full fleshed bras even to save my life! Ha. I thanked him, walked a distance and buttoned up.

But this is what I really want to say: there are many guys who notice such things like a girl stained from her period, a torn slit in a skirt, straying bra straps, panty lines, unzipped trouser, a woman’s wrapper almost falling off and many of such sights. But you know what they do? They ogle and laugh and make jests and point fingers and take pictures and put them up on Instagram and Facebook with captions like ‘bitches’ ‘hoe busted’ ‘o boy, see bobbi’ ‘if they rape this one now, she will start talking’ ‘doomed for hell, indecent bastard’ ‘look at her, no shame. Cannot buy ordinary pad, but can afford that ugly makeup. Winsh’ and many other silly comments that will follow.

We live in a world where a woman is guilty of everything, both what she knows and what she knows not.

©Jennifer Chinenye Emelife

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8 thoughts on “…A woman is guilty of everything

  1. There are free trade zones, and there are no go areas in pointing out wardrobe mishaps to strange women. What i do, when in critical situations like wet stains in a woman’s hinds, is tell the nearest other female to tell the erring woman about the crisis. But if na only bobby dey swing free, or na fly dey unzipped, I ogle until she gets the message. It is only a cad that broadcasts.

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  2. Guys who hoot or boo when a woman is caught in a compromising moment are neither human or humane at all. As human, we are bound to err. But, by the unique nature of a woman, she is expected to be cautious and selective in her choice of clothes. Dresses that would be comfortable, convenient and protecting should be her choice. But when all attempts to tell a woman to cover up a bit is seen as partiarchal ploy against gender equality, then one should be wary of what to say.

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