|In Which Our Hero Almost Gets Into a Fistfight
||[Sep. 30th, 2010|11:16 pm]
|||||wolfsheim, Heroin (she said)||]|
Many of your were following along on Twitter while this unfolded -- here's the expanded version ....
Yesterday we had a pair of tickets to the final dress rehearsal of the Philadelphia Opera Company's production of Verdi's Otello but trillian_stars had rehearsal herself for the Iliad which opens October 1, so I went with my friend Colin.
The show was lovely, Mark Delavan, who played Iago had injured his knee earlier and performed the whole thing in a wheelchair & this blog post probably would have been about the show were it not for The Weird Thing That Happened After.
We went out to one of my favorite bars, XIX, high atop the Bellvue hotel in Center City and sat down at a table. Right next to us, about a foot and a half away was another table where a non descript 40something couple were having drinks. Colin asked something about the reception on my iPhone and I said I'd never been able to get the signal strength to go down with the "death grip", so I pulled the case off of it and we tried to make the signal go down by holding it in various ways -- we were engaged in this scientific endeavor while waiting for our drinks when the woman next to us said:
"Excuse me, do you have glitter on your phone?"
"Why yes I do!" I said, handing her the case - which, as you know is the most awesome cell phone case ever made. (You can see it here in this photo by Rachel McCaulley.)
"You have Hello Kitty on your phone," she said, turning it over in her hand.
"When there are five iPhones on the table," I replied, "I never pick up the wrong one." I have this conversation so often that at this point it's kind of like a chess opening you've memorized. Her next line is supposed to be "This is so freaking awesome!" but she deviated from the script.
"You've got a @#$%ing problem." She said -- not in the funny way, but in the angry way and things changed a little, like got weird. I could tell that she was really offended by my phone.
She got extremely agitated very quickly and then leaned over to her date and said, "Aren't you going to do something about this?"
At this point trillian_stars arrived and we started talking about the show, but I had one wandering eye watching the action next to us -- the angry woman wouldn't let it go. She goaded her date to "kick [my] ass" and eventually he said "Dorothy, I'm not going to hit someone because you don't like his telephone."
She banged her drink down and grunted "If you can't fight Mr Hello Kittyphone maybe you shouldn't be dating me," and stalked off.
He got up and followed her out and that was that.
Looking back at my Twitter feed, the whole thing from first comment to her boiling over like an unwatched kettle took 32 minutes. It must be very stressful to live like that.
Here's a shot of the Academy of Music, taken with my awesome phone.
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I don't put those in the same category! This is bizarre/crazy. That's despicable.
They're all facets of the same heterosexist/homophobic dynamic. Whether you're shoving a kid into a locker and calling him "fag," or insisting that your date beat some stranger up because he's a long-haired man with a Hello Kitty phone, it's the same toxic crap that says "this is how men should be; any man that isn't that way is clearly gay; gay is bad."
I didn't connect it to the fact that the phone was feminine. It's so clearly wacky that there doesn't seem to be reasoning behind it at all.
2010-10-01 07:19 am (UTC)
Not thatr Homophobia is an act of reason...
but, "It's so clearly wacky that there doesn't seem to be reasoning behind it at all."
I have to agree with you on that one.
Being bashed because of an alternative gender presentation is pretty despicable.
Happens to us gay/trans people frequently.
Yea, but I think the issue is that I didn't know if this was to be read as being because of gender presentation. I mean, I guess so? -- but it just makes so little sense that when I read it, all I could think was, "Why does hello kitty make this woman so angry, exactly?"
I think they key here is that Hello Kitty is pink. And pink is for Girls.
In the mind of a homephobe/transphobe, gender is a rigid, un-assailable fortress. (or rather, a closet, which we should all be locked inside.) It sounds like this person was attacking Kyle for daring to do something considered even slightly gender-variant, which is one of the main reasons all kinds of people are bashed, regardless of if they are actually gay, trans, or otherwise. It happens to butch women all the time.
The issue isn't Hello Kitty, but that a man dared to express his love for her.
Er...grown men are policed for gender presentation all the time - they're not allowed "cute" unless it's with a by-golly-gosh-darned-MALE! theme. And that's questionable.
I thought you were being ironic, but if you're honestly, truly baffled...I'm too boggled to form words.
How did this turn into assuming I didn't know people were judged based on gender standards? My first comment WAS ironic. Sigh.
And THIS comment was simply to say, "Oh, I was thinking of this as random-nutso instead of homophobic-nutso."
So how that turned into me being OH MY GOODNESS, SO IGNORANT ABOUT GENDER STEREOTYPES is beyond me.