A man called me fat in a busy cafe, so I poured hot coffee over his angry shot.
Okay, that's what I would have done.
Here's what actually went down. ] It is Saturday morning in Hobart, a place that is usually quite the most genuine friendly place in Australia. People ask you how you are and they are waiting for a response here.
My favorite thing on a Saturday morning is to go to my favorite cafe, have breakfast and do some work for a couple of hours. It's the kind of cafe where the food is art and the coffee is the best there is.
On my way back to the table I hit a man who looked at the Viennese table filled with things like Belgian chocolate Ganache & Roasted Hazlenut Tart (mmmm!). He has his hands on his hips and takes place in a small area. It was busy so I quickly said, "Sorry" without eye contact and moved on to my table.
Let's stop here for a moment. If you are a woman, chances are you are used to this kind of meeting. Most days may even take a couple of days. We move either for men or we do not move fast enough, but the exchange always ends with us sorry.
Just try to walk in a straight line at your local stores. If you do not change the way you will encounter at least 10 men. There are Youtube videos about this. It's a real thing .
Women are used to making room for men.
So I'm sitting at my table and getting my computer out waiting for my coffee to be delivered when this guy, as I now see, is about 55 years old and in a marine uniform, charges me and says aggressively: 19659003] "If you encounter someone, you must have some manners and say" Sorry for me. "  I'm 38 years old. Gone are the days when somebody has a walk on me and I take it aside. So I do not think so – I match his aggressive energy and say "I said" sorry. "But it was impossible not to hit you with your arms sticking out."
And he says in a cafe full of people: "That's because you're fat."
Now this is true. I'm a little fat. I've had two weight loss operations and I'm still a little overweight, but I'm not anyone in the world (anymore) who obviously occupies more than the average amount of space. I'm in regular chairs I do not need an extension on the plane, I'm not sure anyone describing me would describe me as fierce.
Still cutting this to speed. I'm so shocked, I'm sitting in my seat and hoping the world will swallow me when the people around me try to pretend it's not happening.
Because our society is jumping and bounding with equality, the biggest insult to a woman is not "You are a bad person" or "You are pathetic." It's "You're fat".
My friend I'm with can not pretend it did not happen. She walks after him like a bulldog, to the table where he chokes into a chocolate éclair with his wife and daughter. She chooses the insult that puts a man to the bone. "You're a little, small, insignificant man. Take a good look at yourself."
He sees her up and down and says, "Take a good look at yourself." This guy is a real prize.
I tweeted this immediately and message my sister for what I'm not sure. Every kind message I come back makes me tear.
Finally, I'm in the restrooms, crying my eyes and what for? A middle man said I was fat. I know intellectually, it's more about him than I am. The whole exchange is.
But there I am a 38-year-old woman who looks up at one public bathroom at the cafe and remembering that when I was in school, I was last taken to sports teams because you're fat to be told that I take too much space at a John Farnham concert that is being opened at a community center in Scotland because I'm "fat and high".
I've hit twice in my body, twice, I'm aware of the little cabin, to avoid this exact moment, and it still does.
An hour later, and my friend and I are still standing at the table. We both continue to cry about how men speak to women and how the immediate way to reduce ourselves is to attack our appearance.
The cafe has three people, apologizing to us and giving us free chocolate. He is regular, I'm regular, neither of the employees saw the exchange, they do not know who to believe.
Why is something fat or thin? Why does it seem like someone looks like something? Why, if he had just accused me of being rude, would I go on with my day as if nothing happened when in the world of someone with decency is rude far worse than being fat?
Even though I could be at the police store for attack now, if I wished he was really at home right now, trying to get the coffee out of his stupid white shirt (or more likely to hand it over to his poor wife to sort out). He thinks twice before using a woman's appearance to offend her again.