“Hi, beautiful . . .”

A former colleague used to address some of the female workers that way. He was flirting with them, I think, in his own awkward way. I always thought it was rather obvious and distasteful, and I am thinking that he may have been crossing the line. But I don’t think anyone ever complained to management.

People flirt in myriad ways, and some are better at it than others. Some are so infatuated that they end up, perhaps unintentionally, harassing women.

Which is to say that as we talk about sexual harassment and assault, we probably should be talking about the whole mating game and redefining the rules of flirting and how people should and should not send out “I’m interested in you” signals — at least, for those people who are looking for love in real time as opposed to those seeking it on dating websites designed for flirting and come-ons.

As for people who have committed come-on acts like those alleged to have been done by Harvey Weinstein, I’m wondering if they think they are simply offering themselves and/or flirting. I’m not talking about sexual assault here, because that is an obvious criminal act. I’m talking about people who behave in lewd fashion in the hope of connecting with someone.

For discussion . . .

— Jillian

Photo credit: Santeri Viinamäki/Wikipedia