It began with one of them going on about his wife who had put on weight and how disgusted with her and didn’t want to touch her. We all heard him. We knew he was speaking to the room. We knew he felt he had the right to speak to the room. His friend urged him on, throwing in sexist, misogynistic, fat shaming remarks that the both found funny. No one who heard them cracked a smile.
Then they moved on to a work colleague who they had dubbed ‘The Retard.’ I froze. I looked at the table it was the man who had added jokes to the hateful diatribe. I was trying to figure out what to do when two more customers arrived and were waiting to be seated. I turned around to see them and one of them was an older woman in her wheelchair. Her eyes were burning holes through the fellow who had just spoken.
When the hostess came and asked them where to sit. In an empty restaurant she pointed to the table right beside the two men. The hostess tried to dissuade her telling her that there were many open seats. “I want to sit there,” she pointed and then began to make her way to the table.
The two men looked very intruded upon. The restaurant was near empty and this woman in a wheelchair and her friend were seated right beside them.
The two men fell silent.
She shut them up.
She made the whole place safe.
It only takes one warrior.