Storytime! It wasn’t my first time with No-Face. I was hanging out with my family one day and we were returning home. A guy (let’s call him No-Face) came up to me and told me that he loved my hair and gave me a derpy kind of smile. I offered a weak thank you and then tried to ignore him. My family and I moved away from him, but he started following me specifically. Eventually, my mom told him off and he got off the train. That was one year ago.
Fast forward to this past Wednesday. I was super tired from school and lightly sick, so I decided to go home, but stopped at McDonald’s along the way. After buying my fries, I waited for the 29 at the bus stop and decided to go on my phone because I didn’t want to catch anyone’s attention with accidental eye contact.
While I was scrolling through Instagram mindlessly, looking at who knows what, a guy walked in front of me and said creepily, “I like your nails.” Automatically, I was like nope, but wondered why he sounded familiar to me? I looked up to see if was one of my friends trying to tell me some kind of inside joke. It was No-Face.
Rattled, my first instinct was to say, “Gracias,” and move away before he had a chance to take the conversation further. A few minutes later, I was on the bus contacting my nearest family member (my cousin, who we’ll call Jeremiah). By this point, I had accidentally cornered myself in the bus and No-Face was slowly coming my way. At this point, I thought of giving No-Face my cold fries because maybe he was after them instead of me.
As I was calling Jeremiah, No-Face stood there looking at me and told me to sit down next to him so he could ‘brush my nails.’ In a Spanish accent, I said in English that I was getting off the bus. I moved to the front and he eyed me slowly like a shark and yes, in my mind the Jaws theme music was playing in the background.
While all of this was happening, I was talking to Jeremiah and telling the bus driver the situation. I planned to get off at my cousin’s house who was waiting for me at the bus stop near his house. With only a few stops left, No-Face had moved up and was standing behind me. I looked around for help and my child mind kicked in: I saw Robin Williams say “Oh, good luck kid” as he stepped off the bus along with No-Face. I got off one stop after No-Face did, but continued to my cousin’s house, just in case I was being followed. Later, when things died down, I went home and took a nap.
The moral of the story is that you should always be aware of your surroundings. It’s easy to get rattled when someone is aggressive about crossing the line, so I would advise you to avoid eye contact with such people and to move away as quickly as possible. Another lesson is to stay on Robin Williams’ good side because you never know when you’ll need a saint to bless you with a miracle. If Robin doesn’t show up, you have to use your voice and your wits. In the future, I will insist that the MUNI driver address someone like this. They are required to report such individuals. Always know who your allies in the area are as well, so you can call on someone you trust. Stay safe my lost youth.