When I came home from being followed to my car in the dark after Halseyfest last year, I told my dude at the time what happened and he totally mixed me off. Not like I was crying or something, but I was mad being like, right?? Why would this man follow me and my son like that? Glancing over at us, and doing all this extra shit in the weirdest way possible. Ducking behind stuff then peeking out then looking the other way if I looked at him. It was totally creepy, weird, all that.
But the dude I was dealing with didn’t seem to care at all. He said something like, oh the guy probably just wanted to help you or something because I was holding a lil fold up table and a bag of books that I was selling. I said back, bruh, no that’s not how it happened. Like that is an infuriating response even looking back. I had to just walk away after that conversation. Somehow that interaction was worse than the incident itself. It was further confirmation that this is all just what guys do. Not cool.
You know and I don’t even remember what I was wearing that day. That’s annoying. Not because it would have been an explanation for being harassed, but I generally don’t remember myself that day. I only know how I felt at the end of the night. Preyed on, looked over. That memory precedes how the whole event went for me. It was a last minute thing, but I spent hours talking to people about my book and watching The Nork Project work. I’m sure I was wearing something cute. Now I can’t recall. I just know that I had to keep being on the move.
-Rachel Wagner 2020