And this is what I mean when I say I know myself. This is what I mean when I stress the importance of being that giant. This is what I mean when I act a bit “stand-offish”; when I don’t laugh at your jokes, or return your text, or ask why. Reading King’s article made me nauseous. I squirmed across my bed as I read it face down on my belly. I could feel her tension, her unease, her disregard for her gut feeling and her too late realization that if she continues much longer she will end up very upset with herself. With the world.
I did a brief stint as the girl who cares, as the nice girl, first when I was 14 and again when I was 20. Both times I found myself in rooms with boys I didn’t want to be in. With that sinking feeling in my gut that I should’ve listened when I recoiled at his first laugh or nod or “gift.” Whether that was a note or a dinner or a video game or a cigarette or a beer. And that last time when I was 20 and realized I had slipped up for the first time in 6 years, I promised myself that I would never find myself in that situation again. Never risk that sick feeling again for fear of offending some boy or out of fear for appearing to be the angry bitch.
My anger sustains me. So for the rest of college and all the years since, I’ve been the angry girl, sometimes actually pushing boys away from my drunk friends. Leaving full beers on the bar no, thanks. Stepping on boys toes on the dance floor I said I don’t want to dance. Elbows in their ribs. Getting up and switching seats on the bus. No. If you can’t hear it from my mouth, then hear it from my body–hear it from whatever pain I can elicit. I hope my rudeness offends you. I say that as a Hispanic female. I don’t have to be chatty or nice or white or quiet or sweet.
I don’t owe you anything and I don’t fucking care if you like it.
Carry yourself with the confidence of a mediocre white man.