I need to start by saying I don’t go into the hell that is Brixton without some serious prep. I’m not stupid and this gentrification hasn’t really stretched to the dodgy junction of McDonalds, Ritzy and KFC. No, I go for the fancy dress and wig shopping that is a must if I’m to maintain a fancy dress standard of sluttiness. But I’ve learned. Brixton is a predators playground.
So I wore trainers, black leggings and a loose-ish black top. I was dressed for inconspicuity. I don’t think that’s a word. I was dressed to go in, out and, not attract attention from any of those that see the High street as an opportunity to chirps. It’s a shopping area! Show some respect to those that retail therapy on mental health days. OK upon reflection maybe I did look like something out of Hunger Games.
And I was going really well. After the horror of the 345 bus which has to be the slowest bus ever I managed to make it past the Nandos without temptation. I don’t bother with the shops until the department store and I was doing really well until I turned into Acre Lane.
I saw a guy who could only be described as addicted to bleaching. His skin looked angry and painful, his hands were a different colour and …. It’s just not right. Worse he’s with a chocolate brother with no bleach highlighting his bleachicity. That’s not a word either but, you know what I mean. Who told people that bleached skin looked good? I know it’s a psychological condition brought on by bullying, conditioning that light is right and a few celebrity artists jumping on the bandwagon. But can we maybe stop focusing on weaves and relaxers and look at this as a more urgent focus please?
Anyway he spots me. Fuck. I ignore the spot and walk on trying to pick up pace but Brixton isn’t made for brisk walking. I don’t think anyone else has somewhere to be urgently. He stops and shouts, “Hey, hello sexy.” I ignore him pretending not to be able to hear. This is partially my fault as I’d taken my headphones off so clearly I could hear. But if I looked like someone with somewhere to go he’d ….
Seriously? This man is shouting like a) my name is sexy and b) he knows me? He doesn’t know me. And what makes him think that I didn’t stop the first time but his shouting even louder is going to make me think he’s worth talking to?
Now I have confused people looking at me in what is effectively gym gear thinking, he can’t be talking to her. I rush on into a shop and that’s it although I’m feeling rather indignant that he thinks we are a match.
This is why I can’t with Brixton. People think it’s the local village and you are an open target. I know they can tell I’m not a local and therefore I’m more likely to get the idiots from the local Camberwell hospital for the mentally unwell. They are particularly astute and shout things out to me like, why are you here, you’re ugly and my personal favourite, the homeless looking man who asked for change and then asked to bang me.
I would say I’m boycotting Brixton but it’s great for fancy dress and all the black events not in Shoreditch are there. I’m not just tired of the assumption that we want guys to chirps on the street when we are shopping. It’s the incredulous reasoning that shouting at strangers will somehow get you a positive response. I’m just not Brixtonised enough to enjoy it . Or Peckhamised. Now that should be a word.
Rant over. Back to internet shopping for me.
© Chelsea Black