I live in Wichita Kansas and people here are hicks and white trash mostly. At least that is what I encounter the most. I am a pedestrian and I am a pedestrian by choice. Well, not just by choice but if I had a choice I would still be a pedestrian. I walk to the store. I walk to my MMA class. I often even walk to church when no one offers me a ride. I walk my son to school and I run. I do not mind. I actually enjoy it. I will walk to places up to 5 miles away, no problem. Any further than that it just takes too long. I do not mind this at all.
People here do not understand. In the summer, when I dress in less, as in a tank top that shows no cleavage and knee length shorts, I get offered rides all the time. This would just be politeness if all the ride offerers weren't men. What do they think I am? A hooker? Well, Wichitan whores don't come looking this healthy or with this many of their own teeth. Even if they do not mistake for a hooker they have to think I am pretty stupid to take a ride with a strange man.
My reaction never reflects these two scenarios. I act as if their motives are pure and say "No thanks, I am fine. I enjoy walking and the exercise." Then they ask, "Are you sure?" I say, "Yes, I'm sure, thank you thou." Then they drive away with a slightly unbelieving shrug. Is it so hard to believe someone might enjoy mild physical exertion and some time to think for themselves? I do. I also enjoy saving the money from not having a car or taking the substandard public transportation system in Wichita.
This is not all I have to put up with as a pedestrian. I am at constant danger of dying. People here are unused to pedestrians and therefore do not see us. I also get honked at all the time. What is that the 21 century wolf whistle? Or are they afraid that I will jump of the side walk and run at them? Or are they implying that I have no right to be in the vicinity of the street with out a motor vehicle. All these possibilities are very offensive.
Then there are the other pedestrians, they are no better. Last night I was jogging and a man reeking of Swisher Sweets said "Hey baby." to me walking by. I ignored it and acted as if I did not hear. In my opinion the best option. I never want to acknowledge that because it would show I respond to "baby". I am not an infant neither am I well enough acquainted with these random strangers for it to be alright for them to call me that. Politeness people, if you do not know a person be polite and treat them with respect. Acceptable alternatives include "Good evening ma'am/miss." Or just plain "Good evening." Or for more casual yet appropriate flare try " Hi, how are you?"
By far the worst comment I have gotten was when walking to the store to buy milk. I was walking wearing loose jeans and a black tank top that was loose as well and showed no cleavage. Some girls drove by me in a white new looking car and yelled out something unintelligible. I did not think much of it. Then they drove past me again and yelled, quite clearly, "You're walking on Broadway, whore." Yes, indeed I was. Whore I am not as I do not charge for my services and neither do I sleep around. I was a little bit upset by the implication.
Why do people in Wichita have no manners? I mean it is just a few people acting this badly but it sheds a bad light on the whole city and makes me not like it here very much.