Sep
19
2009

Good Decisions Come From Experience, and Experience Comes From Bad Decisions

I was huffing and puffing up the Fillmore St. hill today, when a guy rolled up next to me in a BMW.  In as non-shady of a way as possible, he asked me if I wanted a ride to the top of the hill.  I was thrilled for the after school special moment, but I politely declined.

As I continued on with my huffing and puffing, I had a thought about city living as a female — no matter the city, no matter the female, most decisions are made based around one key criterion: the likelihood that the scenario you are considering will become a rapey/stabby situation.

It’s not a conscious thought most of the time.  Take the common (ego alert) scenario of a guy asking to buy me a drink.   Each decision I make seems to be based in evaluating circumstances in the immediacy.  If I’m attracted to him, I’ll accept the drink.  If I want to keep talking to him, I’ll accept his invitation to go to another public venue.  But the subconscious question accompanying every move I choose to make is “will this night turn into an homage to ‘The Accused?'”   Asking this question is no different from weighing the safety pros and cons of any situation, but I think the rapey/stabby benchmark is especially relevant for ladies.  

Of course, it isn’t foolproof.  It’s easy to lose focus for one reason or anther (usually sleep-deprivation, alcohol, the euphoria of an epic trivia win, or some combination of all three), end up in what could be shady situations and then have to retroactively take steps to protect against potential rapey-ness and stabby-ness.  Usually, this involves a phone call or a text message to one or more friends saying something along the lines of “I’m getting into a blue Ford Taurus license plate 507-PLU.  The driver has dreamy eyes and a winsome smile.  If you don’t hear from me in 24 hours, please alert the authorities.”

I think spinning the bad decision wheel on occasion, especially at this age, is healthy and often leads to the most fun, memorable times and the best stories.  But the key to having this result as opposed to…well…you know…is being able to read situations, and I would argue that a sensitive, well-tuned rapey/stabby-meter is the best tool for this.

Fortunately, living in a city like San Francisco, you can’t help but fine-tune your sense of the rapey and stabby.  And I have total faith in mine.  So the next time I find myself wandering the Tenderloin at 6 am, I’ll know I’ll make it home safely.

Written by lindsay in: Uncategorized | Tags: ,
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