Being a woman is awesome (we have pretty hair), but it's also exhausting (people feel entitled to comment on our pretty hair). To illustrate this point, a woman walked the streets of New York City for ten hours to see just how often she'd get catcalled. She even wore a T-shirt, jeans, and sneakers so people couldn't say her clothing meant she was asking for it.
The results? 108 catcalls in ten hours. That's an average of close to 11 an hour. One guy even goes so far as to walk silently in stride with the woman for five minutes after his initial greeting failed to capture her attention.
Let this be a potent reminder of why you should never leave your apartment.
Update: In response to criticism about the racial makeup of the catcallers in the video, Rob Bliss Creative, the marketing agency behind the clip, said:
We got a fair amount of white guys, but for whatever reason, a lot of what they said was in passing, or off camera. So their scenes were a lot shorter, but the numbers themselves are relatively even. Also, we didn't always capture the audio or video well- there's a siren that kills the scene, or someone walks in front of the camera, so we had to work with what we had. Cities are noisy, and full of people that walk in front of the camera, you know? By chance, this is how it looked and it didn't end up being the perfect representation of everything that happened, but we really did have a broad spectrum of people that said/did something.
But at Slate, Hanna Rosin responded, "if you find yourself editing out all the catcalling white guys, maybe you should try another take."
Activism is never perfectly executed. We can just conclude that they caught a small slice of catcallers and lots of other men do it too. But if the point of this video is to teach men about the day-to-day reality of women, then this video doesn’t hit its target. The men who are sitting in their offices or in cafes watching this video will instead be able to comfortably assure themselves that they don’t have time to sit on hydrants in the middle of the day and can’t properly pronounce “mami.” They might do things to women that are worse than catcalling, but this is not their sin.