Recently I made a list of things I have never done/seen, one of them is “interacted with a drunk person”. Well today I may have encountered just that, or maybe it wasn’t a drunk, maybe it was a mental person who wasn’t 100% (thereby rationalizing my fear).
So today I went on a nice shabbos walk with my mother, or at least it was nice until 3 scary incidents occurred. So we started off walking down an Avenue that had a lot of stores open with mostly Russians walking around. I didn’t like walking down that avenue because then it’s too busy and it feels like during the week, and you can’t talk, your focusing on walking past it all.
So then we get to Ocean Parkway, and we sit down on the bench across from a nice sefardi shul, we were watching people come out of it, and we were talking. Then we got rudely interrupted by this crazy man. He was on a bike, with white/grey hair and beard, he had ripped jeans and looked like he was homeless. He calls out “F’n Je*u* if I had the strength I would nail you to the cross”. I’m still not sure who he was talking to, where the only one’s there, so it must of been us, but I wasn’t going to wait around to find out.
So I jumped up off the bench and started walking away, signaling that my mother should do the same. So then my mother calls my name telling me to cross the street, since the man was following in my direction. So I quickly cross. Meanwhile, there was a sefardi father with 2 sons walking nearby on the sidewalk to where I crossed over to. They saw what happened, so as we were walking down the block, they kept turning around and looking. I thought they were being kind and they wanted to make sure we were okay. When we got to the corner and were waiting for the light, the father asks if I was scared. I of course said “yea!”, and my mother said she didn’t get scared. So that was incident number 1. As a side point, I noticed many sefardi men were wearing baseball caps.
Then we decided to walk home through a different Avenue, my mother likes to look at the nice houses and comment on them. So we were standing by a house and I noticed a ramp so I made a comment. Then all of a sudden we hear the neighbor to that house call out “F’n A-holes” and he continued cursing. He wasn’t talking on a phone, so not sure if it was directed at us or not, but again we passed by and continued on. Now that was incident number 2.
When we started getting closer to my neighborhood, I see this lady who looked like a man, wearing men clothes, but with woman parts. She had this huge black dog on a leash, she was on the opposite side of the street, so we continued walking. But then she started crossing over to our side and yelled out “Get away”. So we quickly crossed to the side she came from. But then this huge black and brown dog without a leash comes chasing after us, crossing the street. It was a few feet behind my mother, I quickly was able to get away. I felt bad for leaving my mother so close to the dog, but she was able to get away too. So that was incident number 3.
Then we finally made our way home, I had a chazaka of 3 in one day, I had never encountered such anti-Semitism and it freaked me out. I guess it teaches us that we aren’t so safe as we would like to think.