Mona Hanna

Fantasy/romance writer Mona Hanna. I like kittens.

Racism, I think.

I had a bad altercation today, which I think had something to do with racism. I live in Australia, and I was born here and have lived here all my life. My parents are Egyptian so my appearance is one of Middle Eastern descent.


I must say first up I have a real issue with people being chivalrous to me. I know that's weird, but I don't like people holding door open for me, unless it just natural to stop a door hitting me. I don't like people allowing me to go ahead of them, especially if they are at the place first. And I don't like people stopping their cars for me to cross the street, unless it's at a marked pedestrian crossing. I realise this is strange, but it's just how I am.


Today I was waiting to cross the street. I wasn't at a marked pedestrian crossing but there is a place in the middle of the road there for people to stop to wait for cars, I think because there's a school nearby. Anyway a car stopped for me, and I waited for him to keep going. This is what I usually do. He stayed still. I waited some more then waved for him to go, then walked away and swore because he wouldn't move.


The man wound down his passenger window and stuck up his mddle finger at me and started yelling at me. He said something like he was just stopping to let me go first. I stuck my middle finger up at him and told him to piss off. He drove off then pulled over and got out of his car.


I thought "Shit," and quickly crossed the street. He kept yelling at me and I said piss off again. He ended with "Go to hell you fat slug."


I was quite shaken by this. I kept walking towards the shopping centre where I was headed, looking over my shoulder to make sure he left. He finally did. I then went to the gym where I was headed and went about my day, but I was quite freaked out.


Let me say I know I started this and I know I was rude to the man. But I felt rolling down his window to yell at me, then actually getting out of his car to yell at me, seemed to me quite a severe reaction. I have to wonder if I was a pretty skinny white woman if he would have had the same reaction. Was he so upset because I'm an overweight woman of Arabic descent? Did my appearance offend him so much, or was it just my attitude? I'm not sure if he would have yelled at a pretty white woman. I come across racism all the time, usually without me doing anything, so I'm not sure if what happened had anything to do with that.


I know the situation was partly my fault but I felt the guy overreacted. I'm a very short unfit woman, and he was a big guy, so how could he not see him getting out of his car and yelling at me would be very threatening? It scared the crap out of me!


Sorry for bothering you guys with this story. Feel free to tell me I'm an idiot. I probably was.