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Bar Stuff - Paying Attention (1 Viewer)

I dont consider it my obligation to society to intervene when i see a man i have never seen before in my life hitting on a woman i have never seen before in my life and she has no interest. 

If she left and i saw he was going to follow her thats a different story. If he groped or threatened her thats also a different story.

 
Lose-lose situation.  If I intervene, it's my toxic masculinity feeling I need to play the role of protector.  If I do nothing, I'm allowing it.

I pick to do nothing. 

Also, "creepy or predatory behavior" is too subjective. 
Tough situation as half the time it is male bartenders or servers trying to hit on a woman or group of women. Had a friend who bartended for years and he loved when single women sat at the bar. "easy pickens" he used to say.

 
I think it's easier for a bartender to intervene, as they have a bit more authority (and I'm kind of a puny tax lawyer who would get beat up by someone who thought I was 'blocking him).  If I saw something, I'd be more likely to make sure the bartender has seen it versus intervening directly.

The neighboring city to me started an "Ask for Angela" campaign.  There are signs in the women's restrooms saying to ask the bartender for Angela if they are in a situation that they need help with, and it alerts the bar staff of the issue.

 
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Maybe 5 years ago, I was on a business trip to Chicago.  The night I arrived, I went to the hotel bar to grab dinner and a drink, where it was just me, a single woman, and a youngish hipster looking guy.  I'm minding my own business when I see hipster guy move in on the woman - I guess I was sort of surprised because he didn't seem like the type to be so assertive.  She's trying to blow him off when he puts his arm around her and she sternly says "Don't touch me."  Bartender does nothing.  The guy apologizes, moves down a seat, and I figured it was handled.  Not 5 minutes later, I see him scoot down the bar and try to put his arm around her again.  At that point, I jumped up and did the whole "No Biff, get your damn hands off her" routine.  The guy seemed super freaked out, payed his tab, and scurried away, and the woman thanked me.

To Arizona Ron's point, I did find myself later wonder whether I was "white-knighting" the whole situation.  Looking back, I think the bartender should have stepped in, but since she didn't, I would totally do it again, masculine protector be damned.

 
The day I had a kid is the day I stopped getting involved in anyone's ####. You just never know who is crazy and how people would react. Obviously I would do something/say something/call someone if I was witnessing an actual crime taking place, but short of that, I'm staying out of it. 

 
The article advises stepping in if a man “approaches a group of women” or “turns to face a woman at the bar” :lmao:  

Yes, women are poor helpless creatures, and your big nosy manly self needs to save the princess from having to say “no thanks”. Thank God for white nights like that!!!!! :lol:  

Mind your own business unless the woman is visibly uncomfortable and openly seeking help against an overly persistent ########... and even then you only step in if actual staff are unavailable/unwilling. 

 
Saw this girl being ogled over at the library the other day. I told her, “If you need me to step in, just ask me where you can find a copy of A Clockwork Orange, and I’ll come beat this guy’s ###. “

 
Saw this girl being ogled over at the library the other day. I told her, “If you need me to step in, just ask me where you can find a copy of A Clockwork Orange, and I’ll come beat this guy’s ###. “
Mentioning that title is a microaggression and approving of rape culture. You should have picked "The Notebook" to be safe. 

Oh....wait. That one too? Oh forget it. 

 
I don't think anyone is saying be the "white knight". I think it's more a "pay attention" and casually help if needed.

It's why I specifically titled it "paying attention"

Intervening doesn’t have to be confrontational. You know what I’d love, when I’ve got a guy hounding me for my phone number and just won’t let up? Another man to engage him in conversation. To just walk over and say, “Hey man, what’s your name?” This takes the attention off of me, lets me move away if I want to, lets me find my friends, if they’re nearby, lets me, most importantly, know that you are not on his team, you are not his friend, and that I don’t have to be afraid of you, too.
If I see a man approach a group of women and insert himself into their conversation, I’ll be sure to walk by and check in with them, even if their drinks are full. If he goes to the bathroom or steps away for a minute, I’ll ask the women if they’re having a good time, if everything’s okay, often with very pointed glances at the man in their midst. If a man physically invades a woman’s space by leaning over the back of her chair, or turning in his seat to face her, putting one arm on the bar in front of her, the other on her chair and she moves away from him, I know to say something — and I do.

I’m almost always told, “Oh, yes, we’re fine, thank you,” on that first pass, and when I am, I always make sure to say, “If that changes, you ask me for a Screwdriver and I’ll take care of it, okay?” I don’t get asked for a Screwdriver very often, but the option always stands.


It goes in the "we're all in this together" thought.

 
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Men and women should be treated as equal. I don't need some dude coming up to me and getting into my business when he sees a few ladies chatting me up. I'm fine bro, find your own flock of lovelies. 

 
I actually like the message of this article because I believe that following traditional gender roles are a good thing and this article is asking men to play the role of 'protector' in relation to women.

At the same time, this is why I think that feminist movements, such as the me too movement, are confusing.  If you are a group that promotes empowerment, the message is that women can and should take care of themselves and don't need a man.  If that is in fact what the me too movement is attempting to promote, they certainly don't need any men to watch after them, right?  And this article is in conflict with the beliefs of the feminist movement.

In the end, I think it is a good message.  I definitely agree with RUSF18.  There is always a danger in situations like this in the sense that you don't know who is crazy... but I think the concept of men acting as protectors of women is a good thing. 

 
I actually like the message of this article because I believe that following traditional gender roles are a good thing and this article is asking men to play the role of 'protector' in relation to women.

At the same time, this is why I think that feminist movements, such as the me too movement, are confusing.  If you are a group that promotes empowerment, the message is that women can and should take care of themselves and don't need a man.  If that is in fact what the me too movement is attempting to promote, they certainly don't need any men to watch after them, right?  And this article is in conflict with the beliefs of the feminist movement.

In the end, I think it is a good message.  I definitely agree with RUSF18.  There is always a danger in situations like this in the sense that you don't know who is crazy... but I think the concept of men acting as protectors of women is a good thing. 
The bartender who wrote the article is a woman.  

(I thought she came off as highly schoolmarmish in this article.  Bartenders can and should discourage date rape by intervening when a creepy guy is dousing a girl with alcohol.  But it seems weird -- to put it mildly -- that you would find it noteworthy when a guy chats up a group of girls in a bar.  That's the whole purpose of many of these establishments.)

 
I don't think there's anything out of line in the article.  You're not "white knighting" the situation if you see something inappropriate.  We've all been there, you know it when you see it.  If you see something, say something.

 
The bartender who wrote the article is a woman.  

(I thought she came off as highly schoolmarmish in this article.  Bartenders can and should discourage date rape by intervening when a creepy guy is dousing a girl with alcohol.  But it seems weird -- to put it mildly -- that you would find it noteworthy when a guy chats up a group of girls in a bar.  That's the whole purpose of many of these establishments.)
It actually reminded me a lot of the article posted here recently about not calling women "girls" in any setting besides talking to young children. The line about not needing to be confrontational, but guys should go up to another guy trying to flirt with a girl and say "hey man, what's your name?" 

😂

In what bizarro world would that be a normal comment to make? 

That's the equivalent of that "all men would be insulted if a waitress called them 'boys'" from the other article. Uh, no...that would be perfectly normal in many, many situations.

 
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I don't think anyone is saying be the "white knight". I think it's more a "pay attention" and casually help if needed.

It's why I specifically titled it "paying attention"

Intervening doesn’t have to be confrontational. You know what I’d love, when I’ve got a guy hounding me for my phone number and just won’t let up? Another man to engage him in conversation. To just walk over and say, “Hey man, what’s your name?” This takes the attention off of me, lets me move away if I want to, lets me find my friends, if they’re nearby, lets me, most importantly, know that you are not on his team, you are not his friend, and that I don’t have to be afraid of you, too.
It goes in the "we're all in this together" thought.
<deep breath>

The part in red is expecting too much of an uninvolved stranger. It's contrived and unnatural, and could ultimately end up in violence.

How did women handle this stuff in the 1970s? I know we don't want to go back to 40+ year-old social mores ... but still. The coping mechanisms seemed different then.

 
Seems like the article could have been more concise and just been "If you are at a bar and see someone who is looking like they are being made uncomfortable, go over and diffuse the situation". 

 
Doug B said:
<deep breath>

The part in red is expecting too much of an uninvolved stranger. It's contrived and unnatural, and could ultimately end up in violence.

How did women handle this stuff in the 1970s? I know we don't want to go back to 40+ year-old social mores ... but still. The coping mechanisms seemed different then.
Thanks. I hear you. I don't think it has to be unnatural though. Strike up a conversation with whatever is natural for you.

And I think the answer to "How did women handle this in the 1970's?" is sadly, they just put up with a ton of creepiness that was brushed off as normal. 

Again, I don't think anyone is advocating for "white knight" stuff. I think it's right to what the article said, pay attention and if you see creepiness or women who are receiving unwanted advances, it's ok to help a bit. Even if that's just engaging the creepy guy enough to allow the woman a way to graciously move on. 

 
huthut said:
Seems like the article could have been more concise and just been "If you are at a bar and see someone who is looking like they are being made uncomfortable, go over and diffuse the situation". 
Pretty much. Context is everything and we usually can tell the difference between a pleasant 2 way conversation and someone who is being badgered. There are ways to diffuse or distract without being confrontational. 

 
huthut said:
Seems like the article could have been more concise and just been "If you are at a bar and see someone who is looking like they are being made uncomfortable, go over and diffuse the situation". 
A woman wrote it ...hth

 
Thanks. I hear you. I don't think it has to be unnatural though. Strike up a conversation with whatever is natural for you.





1
I can't see this being a solution

Dude is hitting on a group of girls

Me, unknown to every one of them and just there to enjoy a bite and a beer walks up and zeros in right on the guy "hey man, what's your name?"

the childhood choose your own adventure book nerd tells me:
• If the guy says "Who the F are you, I'm not here to talk to other dudes" turn to page 45 and prob get into a fight
• If the guy says "Oh hi there, my name is Robert" turn to page 69 and you are probably in for the group of girls leaving and you stuck with your new BFF who might start hitting on you.

The only acceptable answer here is to tell the bartender or bouncer and let them deal with it. You still helped the situation but don't need to get involved. If it was a friend of family member, then the situation is different, but sorry, I'm not risking getting into a fight over it. 

 
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You should never have to pay as much attention when you are out at a bar as she is asking you to. You also should not have to have the responsibility she is asking you to have. 

Because, unfortunately, even if I do have a coworker or manager to call for assistance in dealing with a troublesome guest, it may not be a realistic option. Staff-on-staff sexual harassment in restaurants is well-documented, but what isn’t often talked about is what, if anything, a guest can do if they see something going down between coworkers.

In my experience, there aren’t many opportunities for even the most unabashed, vocal ally to step in, because this type of behavior takes place either behind the scenes or well after we’ve closed for the night.

But, if you do see something problematic occurring between staff members, addressing the target, not the offender, is most helpful. For one thing, it will be less confrontational; for another, not knowing the exact relationship between two staff members could lead to workplace repercussions — lost shifts, lost job, increased harassment — if the aggressor knows they’ve been outed. If that sounds like the same approach you’d use to talk to someone in an abusive relationship about said abuse, it’s because it is: The parallels between workplace harassment and domestic abuse are striking.
These paragraphs are ridiculous. When I go to a bar (which is rare these days) I am not going to pay attention to the interactions of the bartender and her coworkers close enough to determine are they coworkers that are dating, flirting, harassing, threatening, etc. I am certainly not going to try and get involved in any way, shape, or form. In fact it is really stupid to suggest such a thing. You are 1000 times more likely to end up in a negative situation for yourself than you are to do any good. 

One time at work one of the sales guys was harassing one of the office workers. The UPS guy was there one day making a delivery, saw what he thought looked like an uncomfortable interaction and went over to the office girl and asked, hey how is it going today? That sales worker never spoke to the office girl again all because of that casual intervention. Oh wait, that NEVER WOULD HAPPEN. Guy would be back harassing her at his next opportunity. 

It is also counter to what she is telling you for the guests. So if a male guest is harassing a female guest you are supposed to go talk to the man and ask his name. If a male coworker is harassing a female coworker, you are supposed to go talk to the female coworker.

What do we do if it is male worker harassing a female guest? 

 
These women are grown adults. Unless a man is physically assaulting her, I'm not getting involved in another adults' conversation that doesn't involve me. She's a big girl. She or her friends can tell a guy that they're not interested, go away. If the guy can't take that hint, that's what the staff is for. You don't want a world where semi drunk dudes are jumping into a conversation midway to say "this guy bothering you" and trigger a real toxic masculinity event.

 
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Kudos to the lady that wrote the article for being so uber-attentive, because I'd wager that 8/10 times the bartenders are too busy fetching beers, mixing drinks, opening/closing tabs, serving food, changing the tv channel so Guy X can watch his local college team, restocking the whatever, changing out a keg, fetching silverware, etc. to keep any amount of attention on the majority of the patrons that aren't right in front of them.  

My whole takeaway from the article is "if you see something, say something"... 

 
i ran the west coast for about 10 years, been in bars in Ukiah to TJ, here's my take.

Never zero in on Miss Tonight too early, something  better could arrive at any minute.

Always wait until ya find out who is with the band before ya start buying drinks.

Chumb up to the bouncers,  just a good thing to do.

Never NEVER mix drinks, stay with what you started off drinking.

Learn this very valuable thing,....women love to talk, you're job is be a great listener.  So many times it's..."he just didn't listen to me".  Here you are.....her hero.

Being a big guy I never had any trouble with tough guys, there was always a lot easier prey around.

You never want to be loud and try to draw attention to yourself in a bar, just be cool.

 
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These women are grown adults. Unless a man is physically assaulting her, I'm not getting involved in another adults' conversation that doesn't involve me. She's a big girl. She or her friends can tell a guy that they're not interested, go away. If the guy can't take that hint, that's what the staff is for. You don't want a world where semi drunk dudes are jumping into a conversation midway to say "this guy bothering you" and trigger a real toxic masculinity event.
This guy actually goes to bars and knows what he’s talking about. 

Still :lol:  at viewing a man turning toward a woman in his barstool as a threatening event worth intervening in. Looney tunes ### article 

 
These women are grown adults. Unless a man is physically assaulting her, I'm not getting involved in another adults' conversation that doesn't involve me. She's a big girl. She or her friends can tell a guy that they're not interested, go away. If the guy can't take that hint, that's what the staff is for. You don't want a world where semi drunk dudes are jumping into a conversation midway to say "this guy bothering you" and trigger a real toxic masculinity event.
Bingo. 

Shut the thread down, no one will give a better answer than this. 

 
This guy actually goes to bars and knows what he’s talking about. 

Still :lol:  at viewing a man turning toward a woman in his barstool as a threatening event worth intervening in. Looney tunes ### article 
This.

Absolute lunacy.

You know a guy harassing a woman at a bar when you see it. And the proper response (assuming they're both strangers) is to alert the staff.

I seriously can't believe we're living in a world where stool turning is considered a threatening behavior.

 
These women are grown adults. Unless a man is physically assaulting her, I'm not getting involved in another adults' conversation that doesn't involve me. She's a big girl. She or her friends can tell a guy that they're not interested, go away. If the guy can't take that hint, that's what the staff is for. You don't want a world where semi drunk dudes are jumping into a conversation midway to say "this guy bothering you" and trigger a real toxic masculinity event.
The more I thought about this thread, the more I realized this is the correct answer.  The great thing about it is, it gives the message to women that they can handle the situation themselves.  It is a much more empowering message.  If a guy isn't taking the hint, be direct.  If a woman is being direct with someone giving them unwanted attention, and it still doesn't stop ask the staff for help.  It's a very accountable mindset as opposed the victim mentality.

 
This guy actually goes to bars and knows what he’s talking about. 

Still :lol:  at viewing a man turning toward a woman in his barstool as a threatening event worth intervening in. Looney tunes ### article 
Her article and point were fairly decent until she got to this point. She goes from asking guys to intervene when there is an identified issue to asking guys to assume ANY guy approaching a woman is a threat. That seems unreasonable and I think is costing her credibility for some people. If I go over to check on a woman because some other guy simply walked over to her, is a third guy supposed to then go over and make sure I wasn't also up to no good?

I think the idea of looking out for others is a great idea and we should all do a better job of it, but it has to make sense to.

Mostly, I'm just relieved that this was never my scene. Being single for both sexes in today's world pretty much sucks if you are a decent person looking for something long-term with another decent person.

 
I'm not laughing, as I've seen a lot of uncomfortable situations where I wanted to intervene, but:

  1. To interject yourself is a call to potential violence
  2. I've found it works both ways; meaning, women are often the aggressors at singles' bars and can be just as annoying
  3. This article takes innocent actions way too far along the signaling line of what is uncomfortable and what is not
Some smart comments in this thread. Insein got to the heart of it, and GroveDiesel's lament about the modern world is spot-on.  

 
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You know a guy harassing a woman at a bar when you see it.
Something else about the article: the author conflates "annoying behavior" (in it's worst form, harassment) with "assault".

When it comes to assault ... yeah, there is a societal line and most men will act in a protective manner if they witness a man assault a woman in a public common space like a bar. However, there is not much that can be realistically done, by the public at large, about prosaic unwanted attention.

 
Her article and point were fairly decent until she got to this point. She goes from asking guys to intervene when there is an identified issue to asking guys to assume ANY guy approaching a woman is a threat. That seems unreasonable and I think is costing her credibility for some people. If I go over to check on a woman because some other guy simply walked over to her, is a third guy supposed to then go over and make sure I wasn't also up to no good?
On the money.

I mean, we are dealing with real live human beings here, not fairy tales. There is no way to socially ensure that the only men who ever approach women are the men of those women's dreams.

 
And I think the answer to "How did women handle this in the 1970's?" is sadly, they just put up with a ton of creepiness that was brushed off as normal. 
I wouldn't say "sadly" -- it's just a vagary of general human behavior. Not every you interact with will like you personally. Not everyone will be your friend. People have an innate ability to disappoint. Not sure that can be sanitized out of human interaction of any kind.

IOW, I don't think there was anything wrong with "brushing it off as normal." Men approaching women is normal. A given woman not wanting a given man to approach her is also normal. That man not taking either (a) 'the hint' or else (b) the direct refusal is all too common, but within the range of normality in human interaction. Where are we drawing the lines here?

 
If I go over to check on a woman because some other guy simply walked over to her, is a third guy supposed to then go over and make sure I wasn't also up to no good?
Aka the Jimmy/Bunk routine.

 
On the money.

I mean, we are dealing with real live human beings here, not fairy tales. There is no way to socially ensure that the only men who ever approach women are the men of those women's dreams.
Heard this long ago and it made me laugh at how true it is in so many cases, with many female friends laughing and saying “welllll yeah, trueee” : 

“For women, the key differentiator between assault and foreplay is the man’s attractiveness.” 

 
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[icon] said:
Heard this long ago and it made me laugh at how true it is in so many cases, with many female friends laughing and saying “welllll yeah, trueee” : 

“For women, the key differentiator between assault and foreplay is the man’s attractiveness.” 
Ofcourse it works the same for guys too. My reaction to a strange woman talking to me in public will vary based on how attractive the woman is.  The biggest difference is that men are much more likely to engage a stranger in the first place and can be much more pushy than women typically are. If I don't want to be bothered by a woman, it's pretty easy to end the interaction. I have seen many guys not so good at taking hints. 

Also I bet there are men who know this but totally misjudge their attractiveness so it actually makes the situation worse. They think they are Don Draper when they are really Pete Campbell. 

 
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