Retro: Toronto, April 2005

Posted on April 3, 2006

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It’s not QUITE spring here…every day I make a poor fashion choice in hope, freeze my tits off and rush back to the shelter of my apartment. Although the geese are unaccountably back (with even more personal space issues) none of the leaves are. On one such hopeful April day last year, I put on a microscopic skirt and heels and went to meet my boyfriend.
Date concluded (I was off to Kuwait and he gave me such a powerful good-bye hug that one passing gay guy said to his boyfriend “Why don’t you ever hug me like that?”), I decided to walk around for a bit down the swankier end of Bloor Street and peer into Chanel windows and so forth. As I crossed the street, I spotted what could only be two Egyptian guys – you know the sort; rotund, moustached, 35-ish. The sort of guys who sexually harass you in Cairo not just to annoy and frighten you, but actually because they think they have a shot. And sure enough, to my colossal astonishment, one said to me as I passed by, “Ya 3asal!”
What the fuck! I thought. Is there no escape from their perfidy? Could have been worse, I know, but am I so accursed that Egyptian guys are trailing me across the world to leer? And sure, I do look Egyptian, but it’s not like I have an Eye of Horus floating above my head – why would they be so sure I would understand? It wasn’t even a hopeful “ya 3asal?” it was firm. So I ignored them, probably confirming their suspicion of my Egyptianness. But it ended my short-skirt-in-public stint. The sons of bitches are everywhere.

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