The metaphor of being a female in America is riding the metro to work, and at a stop, a male enters the train, attempting to stand exactly where you stand. As if surprised to notice you when you resist him, he affirms he’s been in the space you occupy the entire time and demands you move. When you refuse, he grips your shoulder with one hand and physically moves you himself. You raise your voice in response, about him taking his hands off of you, about how dare him, about he can find his own space. But the other male passengers join his chorus and the female passengers say nothing until you are bullied to a new train car where no one has any idea of the casual assault you just suffered and no one cares.
Except this isn’t the metaphor, this is the reality. This and wage gaps and rape and abuse and body monitoring and men who are blind to this and blind to their own deficiency. This isn’t the metaphor, this is it.