At least she didn' t slap me

Oh the times, the times!

I work in a 25 story building with God knows how many other thousand people. One of these people, who I’m only aware of because we tend to get here and leave about the same time each day, is a very attractive woman. She never fails to be very becomingly dressed, she presents herself with a great deal of confidence, in short the woman just looks like she has her stuff together and is on the top of her game.

This morning, as we waited for the elevator, I turned to her and tried to pay her a compliment. This is an exact quote of my words to her: “Hi. My name is Lee Tyson and I work up on 17. I hope you don’t think this is too forward, but I’ve noticed you coming into and leaving the building and you always look so nice. You are a very attractive woman.” There wasn’t the hint of anything sexual or lewd in my comments. I didn’t stare at her breasts (which, I have noticed, are worth a good, long, hard look), I didn’t drool on my tie, I didn’t have an erection tenting my suit trousers. Nothing at all was going on here except that I wanted to know that I appreciated how she looked.

She gave me an icy stare that froze the blood in my veins, took a step back from me as if I had a sign on my forehead that said “Beware! I have plague, leprosy, and very bad breath!,” and said in a hiss “If you ever come near me again I’ll have you arrested for stalking me. How dare you speak to me like that.”

Did I do something terribly wrong? Can’t a man pay a woman a compliment anymore? If someone was to say that to me I might be taken aback by their apparent blindness, but I’d also have the graciousness to say “Thank you. I appreciate the compliment.”

WTF?

I feel for you plnnr. It is an unfortunately reality in today’s day and age that not everyone is a nice and decent guy like you. Therefore people tend to be overly cautious. My guess by your post is that you had never approached or talked to this person before the elevator incident. Just coming out from nowhere and talking to her took guts, but in her eyes, she had no idea who you were or why you were talking to her. For many that can be scary. Maybe something happened in her past that has made her uneasy around strangers. Who knows.

I commend you for trying to be friendly and a gentleman and would say that she’s the one that is wacko.

I feel for you.

Wouldn’t it be nice to have had the quick wit to reply in kind… “Wow! You are a complete mental case - and you hide it so well! I take back my earlier compliment.”

Ture, Dragwyr, I’d never spoken to her before but I’ve held the door for her, crossed the street beside her, made eye contact a few times, maybe even nodded as if to say “hello” on occasion. It wasn’t as if she had never seen me before.

In retrospect, maybe this, too, should have been one my posts to the “Things that made your jaw drop” thread.

I usually start with a smile, then a “hi” to folks I see often. After several “hi” exchanges, I might say, “I’m sorry, we see each other all the time, my name is UncleBill,” and then a while later maybe a little more chatty stuff, before I comment on the CLOTHING (that is a very nice jacket; I love that color) before any comments on the PERSON (you are lookin’ HOT, baby!)

Only THEN do I get the icy stare that freezes the blood in my veins, and she takes a step back from me as if I had a sign on my forehead that said “Beware! I have plague, leprosy, and very bad breath!,” and says in a hiss “If you ever come near me again I’ll have you arrested for stalking me. How dare you speak to me like that.”

But seriously, since the PC Monsters have taken control of society, I RARELY comment on the woman, only on her taste or her clothing (and I avoid “NICE BLOUSE” when her tits are hanging out).

It’s a tough world.

The Bitch-Bots (as the voice in my head calls 'em) are infiltrating society everywhere!!

I was with my son (quite the rambunctious lad) at his school play on Friday. There was a lovely woman, about my age, there with her daughter who also appeared in the play.

“Your daughter is certainly well-behaved. You must be proud of her,” I said hoping to strike up a conversation.

“Yes I am. But all children should be disciplined,” she replied as she gently steered my son away from her daughter (Her hand on his shoulder. Nothing vicious). The tone of her voice and her “look” told me she wasn’t too happy with my son.

“Aw, Kyle’s excited about the play and is just a little antsy,” I explained.

“I hear he’s always antsy,” she said before turning and leading her daughter away.

Like I said, Bitch-Bots are everywhere!

geez plnnr, I’m sorry about that. I can only figure that maybe this woman has a troubled past, where she actually WAS stalked by someone and now is extra bitter and careful. It’s actually sad for both of you…she must have her guard up 24/7.

It reminds me of a day when I was on a PACKED Clark Street bus here in Chicago and when the bus came to a screeching halt, a woman standing next to me stumbled. The man behind her grabbed her arm to steady her and she spun around and screeched,

“It is inappropriate for you to touch a woman in a public place! Do not touch me again. It’s inappropriate.” and he said,

“I was trying to prevent you from falling.” and she scowled back,

“No one asked you to do that.”

I thought she was reading it out of a book it was so mechanical. He just snorted at her and (much to my delight) said,

“You’re a real piece of work.”

jarbaby

Well, she certainly displayed little class and a great deal of paranoia! I liked QuickSilver’s response!

However, this sort of statement out of the blue would seem to me a little…unexpected. I would have been much more gracious, yet a little wary. Let’s face it, attractive women get hit on ALL the time. Sometimes it’s cute and innocuous, sometimes a bit lewd, and sometimes downright obnoxious and insulting. I guess building up to that sort of introduction (small talk, driendly hello, etc) before blasting her with nice compliments wuld have been a bit more appropriate.

She still sounds like a bitch, though!

Geez, women need to get a grip. What a nutcase.

I’m not trying to defend this woman, but maybe she is like a CEO or VP in charge of the Eastern Seaboard or something where she feels superior to all you other peons on the elevator?

In any case, what a meany.

She obviously needs a crowbar to pry the stick out of her ass.

Perhaps it’s the paranoia in me but:

Now she know’s you’re there, and she’ll notice you every day. Given her reaction, I don’t consider this good. You may just find yourself under arrest one morning for nothing more sinister than coming to work at the same time as usual.

Given the ludicrous state of todays justice system, it may not be possible to prove your innocence. If I were you I’d seriously consider finding a new job. In a new town. Perhaps a new state.

plnnr, I feel bad that you got that reaction, but I’m not surprised.

Maybe I’m paranoid, but I always avoid commenting on a woman’s appearance unless I’m sure she’ll take it the right way. I’ve complimented two women I know at work, but only after I knew them for at least a year and considered them friends. Even then, the first one I complimented because I was tired and caught off guard by this gorgeous sari-like dress she was wearing. (What’s more, I started with, “I hope you don’t mind me saying…” and then compimented her on her dress rather than her overall appearance.)

IMHO, you should never talk about a woman’s appearance if she is a stranger or even a casual acquaintance.

Combining xizor’s and Carina42’s responses, this particular woman may be a CEO or VP who has struggled her whole life to be taken seriously and to reach the level she’s reached. Understandably, she might be touchy when the first thing you say to her mentions her looks.

I might suggest that an apology would set things right, but on second thought, I’d just stay far, far away from her.

Here’s how I’d handle it. Act like I’ve never said anything to her ever before. No eye contact, no inkling you even notice her next time.

Or, you could just stare blankly at her tits. There’s no law against that, is there? :wink:

Maybe she thought you said, “Hi. My name is Mike Tyson…”

My usual response to that sort of situation would be “Well, F you then. Is that better?”. This would have worked in the bus situation as well.

Women like that piss me off because they ruin everybody around them. I love compliments. I give them frequently, I think it’s wonderful to receive them, and it doesn’t matter how well I know the other person involved.

There is nothing better when you’re having one of those days when nothing is going right than to have someone appreciate the fact that you exist. It is equally delightful when everything is going well because it reinforces the idea that it is good to be alive.

PLEASE don’t let idiots and assholes keep you from being a fantastic person. I will be so upset if they eventually get to everyone and our lives are reduced to stoicism as a preemptive strike against litigation.

Aww i’m really really sorry. She was being overly mean, but i guess its just a personal attitude of every person.

I work is a much smaller building wiht onely a few hundred people, and every morning and evening pass through security. They would smile, I would smile, we’d get to know each other (that way I wouldn’t have to bother flasing my id card every time I came to the building), and just ask very general non-personal questions for a couple of minutes. Then a few months later, i walk by them and i hear them make comments amoungst themselves about my attractiveness (in a sexual way). I freaked out, and am unwilling to say any more then “Hi” to them these days. There’s alot more to the my story, but it’s sort of the same.

Perhaps she feels work is a place to work, not meet others or socialize. The words “see you coming & leaving, and your very attractive” can throw anyone in the wrong direction. Especially if she wasn’t particularly attracted to you (as a person not physically). You can always be nice and polite to people you don’t really like. I do it to the security guards all the time now on.

But what she did say was extremelly harsh. There’s much better tact to take if she felt threatened anyway, then a threat.

She’s probably just playing hard to get. I have a strong feeling she reallywants you bad.

plnnr, if you would have said that to me, I would have probably smiled and said “Thanks.” I few years ago I would have been horribly embarassed and wouldn’t have believed you (because my self esteem problems would let me accept compliments gracefully), but I still would have said “Thanks.” She definitely over-reacted.

Okay, I agree this woman over-reacted with a capital OVER, and I think you would be justified it assuming either (generous assumption) she has some bad personal “issues” you could not possibly know about or (not-so-generous assumption) she’s a big honkin’ bitch.

BUT . . .

If I were approached by/sharing an elevator with a man I didn’t know, “You are a very attractive woman” would make me pretty uncomfortable. There is an element of sexuality to “very attractive woman” that isn’t present in, say, “I’ve noticed you always look so nice” – because “nice” could be “neat” or “professional” or something other than “attractive to ME personally, and I am a total stranger.” It’s just a tad TOO personal of a compliment to make to a stranger in a work situation. In a bar, yes; at work, no.

My $.02. My change, please.