bystander intervention af

New York in summer, with its millions of people crammed together like sweaty sardines in an ancient, oily tin, is a veritable wonderland of idiosyncrasies, outbursts and xenophobia. On the other hand, it occasionally provides opportunities to spot moments where one can step in and make this city a little less of an angry, festering butthole. I tend to walk away from these sorts of occasions both encouraged and disturbed. For example:

Yesterday I was walking to the train from Central Park (yep, my ass was in Manhattan on a weekend. I feel like I deserve a freaking award), through the remnants of the Bastille Day celebrations on 60th Street (Now that I think of it, I was given a free pastry just for walking by a dude that was breaking down his tent, so I guess I did get a reward for being in Manhattan after all) and I saw these two dudes smoking a cigarette and staring across the street, chuckling. I turned and saw a woman about my age stumbling with really tall shoes, sort of aimlessly, and I learned from ONE ACT that to not be a total piece of shit, you need to take care of other women, even if it means seeming nosy. Also, fuck those dudes. So I stopped and leaned against a wall to watch her and see if she needed help, and she crossed the street to stand next to me, which is a weird thing to do in New York. It scared me because it made me think something happened to her. She seemed emotionally fine, but she was so drunk or high that she couldn’t meet my eye. Long story short, I got her into a cab, but like, fuck whoever left her alone, and what if something did happen to her? I wanted to ask, but I also didn’t want to pry.

Today, a lesbian couple got on the train and sat across from me, and this older dude sitting nearby started complaining loudly to these two poor Asian tourists that same sex relationships are disgusting and two women can’t make a baby (joke’s on you, dude – that technology is almost here) and two men can’t make a baby and all this garbage. Once I realized what he was yelling about (I had headphones in at first) I asked him to stop yelling hateful language. He was obviously a massive dick about it, but fuck if I’m gonna let this lesbian couple sit here being shouted about while no one even tries to defend them, and plus I grew up with same sex parents. It’s hard to know what to do in these situations, especially if the person being shitty is also a member of a marginalized community, which in this situation was the case.  If it’s a ostensibly cis-het white dude, I will open up a can, but when it’s not, it’s so much more complicated.

Man, hat was a downer. I did have a post all ready when I had my period during the 4th of July, but was too lazy to finish it – here’s how it started:

Last weekend I was lounging in my white underwear and blue shorts and my vagina was like, “Bitch it’s 4th of July. Imma make your ass patriotic as hell right now,” and swooped in to give me the color scheme I needed to make this holiday memorable.

You have to give it to my vagina for spotting an opportunity and seizing it. Get it?? Eh? Spotting? Ugh h8 myself. Joke’s on her, though, because blood stains brown. Anyhow, my underwear is ruined.

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Hopefully that punderful anecdote will make it worth reading this whole post. But seriously, y’all, we have got to take care of each other.

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Summer

It is that time of year again when I am at greatest risk of accidentally having my slightly hairy thigh make contact with a far hairier, far less conscientious thigh due to the careless proliferation of body parts that characterizes men on the subway (and also, everywhere). I think it’s great that everyone is wearing shorts. I think body positivity is wonderful. But your thigh is just objectively gross, and keep it the fuck away from mine, k? As the age-old saying goes, “Your balls are not that big.”

It’s also the time of year when my comfort would be exponentially greater, given the sticky, sweltering heat that gathers all the streets of New York into a sweaty mass of metropolis that smells like an overturned garbage truck, if I could wear dresses every day, but when I still choose jeans and a t-shirt to avoid both the visibility of my crotch to everyone below me on any given subway stairway and unwanted attention from shitty dudes.

Sir, my ass is not there for you to ogle at like you’re watching fucking Chef’s Table. It is for me to sit on and for me to poop out of. Next time I see a dude staring creepily at a woman’s ass I’m going to get really close to his ear and whisper, “She poops out of that.” If he’s really being gross, I’ll be like, “She has explosive diarrhea out of that.”

See also:

  • Copious tourists, whose tanned arms emerging from singlets bearing the acronym “YOLO” inexplicably string across two poles on the subway, giving me the option of jabbing said singlet-bearing torso with my elbow or ducking under disgusting-ass, blond hair-covered armpits;
  • forgetting my office sweater at home and attempting to covertly shove my hands under my armpits like Mary Katherine Gallagher in order to warm them up in the Arctic office atmosphere;
  • Riding my bike to Coney Island, getting sand in my butt crack, riding my bike home from Coney Island with sand in my butt crack;
  • Chafing

My period came early and I am not here for any of y’all’s bullshit

I mean, at least it’s not the same day as Trump’s inauguration this time. But it is the same day as Trump being president, because that’s every day.

I’m sure y’all were wondering with bated breath, When will Leah post about her period again? It’s been an awfully long time. Is she pregnant? Let’s hope so, because then she and Beyoncé will have babies in the same year. But also, let’s hope not, because Trump is the president and also that Pepsi commercial with Kylie or Kendall or Kookie whatever the fuck exists now.

The reality is, I forgot. Because I was busy bleeding out of my vagina. Sue me.

This time, however, I did not forget. Because within the series of moments during which I discovered that my period came early, I was treated to a series of almost-as-exciting discoveries outside of my body.

I was feeling like I wanted some privacy (there must’ve been an instinct deep inside of me that knew my vagina was about to fuck me up) so I went straight to the single capacity bathrooms at work – AKA pooping bathrooms – and all were occupied but two. I went into the first one, and the seat was straight-up COVERED in pee. It was like a fucking Jackson Pollock painting, except instead of a paint brush that an artist purposefully draped over a canvas that no one sits on, it was a stupid fucking penis attached to a stupid fucking man.

I then proceeded into the other bathroom, and, lo and be-fucking-hold, the seat was up, y’all! What in the goddamn ass is going on? I work in a building with literally the smartest computer engineers in the country, who make hundreds of thousands to millions of dollars a year. These people have wives. These people have mothers. And I’m even more horrified to say that there are male coworkers of mine who think it’s fine to leave the seat up in a multi-sex/gender bathroom.

Every time a dude sits on a toilet seat covered in another dude’s piss, somewhere in the world a dog adopts a bunch of orphaned kittens.

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Anyway, after putting down the GOT-DAMNED seat that some piece of shit decided to leave up for my ass to take care of, I had to shove a piece of cylindrical cotton up my hoo ha and proceed back to my desk for several hours of bending double in pain, and I just don’t feel like being cool with dudes being garbage right now!

Go see a star war

I was unable to take my Lexapro twice over the weekend because my garbage can psychiatrist didn’t get back to me in time, so I’ve basically been a black hole with legs this entire week so far. Hairy legs, to boot. Good thing it was fucking gale-ing outside like the whole goddamn world was ending (which it is). Just the cherry on top of my shit sundae.

I’m only now starting to feel like I did prior to the weekend and missing those doses, and my gratitude for having access to this medication has been deepening throughout the day. Was that how heavy everything felt before I started the Lexapro? I think perhaps I’ve been feeling a combination of that, the inauguration, and my frustration at work.

Plus, everybody else is all fucked up, too. Since the inauguration I’m certain I’ve seen less patience and more desperation in the people around me. I didn’t think New York could become a more suspicious and self-serving place, but it feels as though it has done so. Or perhaps I’m projecting onto the people around me.

Either way, there are a million things going on and I’ve barely been writing at all. I thought of turning this into a once-a-week blog, but I’m not going to. I’m supposed to be writing every day as a rule, not an exception. I should be writing about that dude that lit a cigarette next to me on the subway and the mom and daughter tourist duo that ogled as everyone else on the train actively ignored him with nonchalant intensity, like only New Yorkers can do. Or my thoughts on the women’s march and those who attended, many of whom had never marched in a protest before. Or how I went to see Star Wars and the dickheads behind me chatted the whole time like they were raised in a fucking barn.

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I wanted to make some joke about “alternative facts” but everyone else has already done a better job. Good luck out there, all of you.

I’m on my period, Inauguration Edition

Yesterday was full of…what’s the opposite of irony? Is irony too nebulous a concept to have an opposite? Well, yesterday was a little on-the-nose for me, in terms of the inauguration and its surrounding activities.

Yesterday at work we had to pull in some members of the larger team to help with some work our auxiliary team had. Most of this involved stuffing thousands of envelopes, an activity you will be surprised to find out some people don’t really know how to do. To be fair, it’s slightly more involved than just putting paper in an envelope because this is *~*~GoOgLe~*~* but not by a lot. Long story short, I ended up having to deal with training, organization, and direction above my pay grade, as I get paid less than the other two people on the team. Anyhow, to get to the point:

One of the auxiliary team members we grabbed was – surprise, surprise! – a mediocre, straight, wealthy white dude! Do you see where this is going? He put on the inauguration (to make fun of, no less) as we were stuffing envelopes, and the comparison was laughable. He stared intently into his computer screen, hands idle, while poorer, browner, gayer, and womanly-er people diligently stuffed envelopes around him, for literal hours. I was put in charge of a few people, who were all finished before everyone else (#HBIC), but not of him, so I didn’t feel comfortable telling him to get back to work – and the person who was in charge of him wasn’t doing anything. So, to spell it our for you dummies, while the rest of us did our work industriously, the one whitest, wealthiest white guy in the room sat around and watched the whitest, wealthiest white guy in the room get recognized for the most powerful position in the world (while I silently suffered from burning menstrual cramps, let me remind you). Also, he used sexist language and made fun of me when I called him out. This is a self-proclaimed male ally. GOD FUCKING DAMMIT!

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#me

Shall we continue our on-the-nose journey?

Today is the women’s march, and I had planned to attend. But come on! I’m on my period, and the only tampons I have are the ones that you have to stuff up yourself like you’re in the goddamned Stone Age because those were the only ones they had in Slovenia, and I used my last good one last period. Like, I know you were Yugoslavia like five minutes ago, but get with the fucking picture!

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ProComfort my fucking ass – or should I say my vag.

But then again, statistically, 20 to 25 percent of the people in this march will be on their period (unless, of course, all those people decide to stay home). Why the fuck should I have to walk with no bathroom for five hours to protest the removal of my own rights while millions of men stay home on their comfy couches? I guess that’s the whole thing. STUPID IRONY!

I can’t be funny right now, y’all. My sense of humor is exiting my body with gusto in clumps of blood through my vag-hole. How about you make me laugh?!

Doughnuts Go Nuts

I’m feeling hella burned out after a day of disappointment and rejection, and in preparation for a horrifying presidential inauguration. Thank fake Jesus for Yoga with Adriene, or I might have torn my adorable armadillo-shaped table lamp from the wall and pitched it from my bedroom window, with no regard to human, plant, or porcelain armadillo life. Also, thank fake Jesus for Elizabeth Warren, with whom, in my dreams, I am sister wives to Adriene, of Yoga with Adriene.

Is that weird? Is it as weird as this guy going into the subway at Barclays Center?

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If so, I really need to have a conversation with myself.

Actually, I don’t give a fuck. Rejection has a way of either constricting you into a more acceptable position or softening your shame muscles into a glorious man-spread of not-giving-a-fuck-dom. I’m being vague for job reasons, because this stupid fucking blog is public. Y’all know that if it wasn’t, I’d be talking some real shit.

Like the fuckhead at Google that left the GODDAMN seat up when he left the bathroom right before me! Like, he looked me in the eye as he left, leaving the seat up. How do grown men in their thirties and forties live their entire lives without learning the habit of putting the seat down? I started dating someone who liked the lid down when the toilet is flushed to avoid nasty-ass butt germs flying around the bathroom like disgusting, tiny hang gliders, and it took me like a week to develop the habit of putting the lid down. Why are men so fucking dumb and inconsiderate? And before you bang your chest and exclaim, “Not all men!” to no one in particular, calm the fuck down. It’s just your hormones.

After days like today and yesterday, I treat myself with a movie and popcorn for dinner, companion optional. I took the Q to get home, which means walking by Doughnut Plant, and I resisted getting a doughnut. I feel like I deserve a fucking Nobel Prize for that restraint. If I’m being completely honest with you, though, it was only because I got one from there yesterday and earlier in the week too.

When I Googled “eating doughnuts stock photo,” like you do, a significant amount of the images featured pregnant women. Is that a thing? If so, sign me up!

 

 

 

jk mom

Resting Rage Face

I’ve been ragey as fuck all week because of the way mediocre white dudes get ahead while the women around them do the same work with more competence and grace – both in my life, and also in the collective life of our country in terms of our incoming executive branch.

Also because I have spent an inordinate amount of time this weird-weather-week with the exclamation, “Where the motherfuck is the C train?” flooding my brain as multiple E trains (which don’t even go to Brooklyn; they literally stop at the World Trade Center; why do they even run downtown in the evening, god fucking dammit) pass and A trains smugly enter and exit the station, half full.

When one little thing (nothing big, just the crushing weight of the patriarchy over all of us) is irking me, everything else seems so much more annoying. Some dude was spreading his legs like he was fucking crowning on the crowded-ass train this morning and I wanted to javelin my knitting needle straight into his crotch. Too violent? I think the real tragedy in that hypothetical scenario is potentially losing my knitting needle to some shithead’s crotch.

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To temper my impending insanity I’m doing the 31-day Yoga Revolution with Adriene, the new queen goddess of my heart. She is everything. Yoga is…something, I guess. I can finally touch my toes, and it’s like exercising, except you mostly get to sit during it. So I can get down with that. Now I just need to get a yoga mat instead of using my lambskin rug like a fucking Neanderthal.