Last week, I made a post on a local social media “buy, sell & trade” group looking for a second hand juicer so that I could maybe save one from going to the landfill or just put one to use that is sitting collecting dust on a kitchen counter. I like to try to buy used before new if I can – it makes sense to me in a consumer driven, wasteful society.
On the same day that I posted, I received a notification that someone was wanting to connect with me — since me and this other person don’t have a direct connection, the social media application was letting me know that a stranger has sent me a message. When I clicked on the notification, it took me to the unopened message in my “other” inbox. Only the first line of the message was visible to me, I would have to click on it to open it and read the whole message.
“Hi there. Not trying to offend. But…” was what appeared before my eyes. I could tell at this point that the person sending the message was also a part of this local “buy, sell & trade” group. The first thing that came to mind was that this person was going to somehow lay into regarding something about my search for a second hand cold pressed juicer… "well this is weird," I thought, prepping myself for some sort of onslaught of personal attack. With a tiny bit of trepidation, I clicked on the message.
“Hi there. Not trying to offend. But you are GORGEOUS. My gf and i are wondering if you would be into a 3 some?”
WHAT? I’m looking for a fucking juicer and I get offered a threesome with two local strangers who have obviously checked out my profile and flipped through my photos…I know they would have had to do this because my profile picture that is visible through my post to the group is me wearing a bird mask, so it’s impossible to tell that I am GORGEOUS…although, the mask I am wearing is also an extremely beautiful hand-crafted peacock mask…so who knows.
My profile is public, it’s fine if people look at it — if I wanted to be more private there are settings I could change to keep my social media life more discreet. I also like to check out strangers profiles if they’ve posted something in a group I’m a part of just to get more of a “feel” for what they might be like, especially before I answer any questions they may have presented. But never once have I sent a message offering sexual encounters to a stranger (except maybe when I was in my early twenties and my girlfriends and I were using an online dating app to add a little extra fun and excitement into our lives!).
I haven’t responded to the message yet. I’m not really sure what to say or if I should say anything at all. I mean, I’m definitely not going to accept the offer…I’m in a relationship with a man (who by the way just happened to have a juicer in his cupboard that his ex-wife has recently given him) and not actively on the search for group sex.
What baffles me is what this other person’s thought process might have been. Why did he find it OK to offer me sex when I was simply looking for a kitchen appliance. Telling me he thinks I’m gorgeous is one thing — I don’t mind a compliment from a stranger when it is offered with no-strings attached and comes across as an observation of beauty — but I have to say, it feels a bit slimy, greasy and “icky” when it comes right before an offer of sex. And does this man troll local social media groups searching for beautiful women to accost?
I’m not a prude. I’m a very sexual person and I’ve had sex with near strangers many times in the earlier years of my life, but I guess what bothers me about this situation is that I had not in any way whatsoever portrayed an image of or relayed a message of looking for sex…I was on the search for a damn juicer.
My heart and soul is still very entwined with the #metoo movement that spread like wildfire a couple of months ago, and all the courageous people who have recently chosen to speak out about their experiences with sexual predators, and so it hits a nerve with me when a stranger so blatantly crosses a personal boundary in a somewhat creepy way — through a computer screen.
It’s not the first time I’ve been offered a threesome by strangers — one time in particular comes to mind right now — I was about 22-years-old, working in a nightclub/bar in the west end of Toronto and I had a man approach me when I was bartending, and similar to this online experience I am talking about right now, he told me him and his girlfriend wanted me to know that they both found me very attractive and would I be interested in a threesome with them — maybe when I got off work, maybe at a later date. I politely declined, telling them I was flattered by the offer, but not interested. This encounter didn’t bother me at all and I don’t think it was just because I was a naive twenty-two-yea- old. I think it was because it was done in person and I was able to have a face-to-face exchange with the man (his girlfriend had hung back a bit from the bar, likely because this wasn’t something she had done before) — I don’t know, it just didn’t feel as weird as this recent online offer.
Are women not even safe to look for a juicer online these days without being offered sex from strange men? I’m confused.