Basically you’re calling the woman a whore and we know it, that’s why we ignore you.
Most catcallers are like dogs chasing cars. They wouldn’t know what to do with one when they catch one. But it comes from a tradition of prostitution. Langston Hughes wrote about it while reporting on the Spanish Civil War in his excellent autobiography I Wonder as I Wander:
There is an old Spanish custom taken for granted that a man may whistle or even speak to a pretty girl on the street without offense … Only loose women even turn around to acknowledge such compliments. But with revolutionary zeal, some of the more ardent Loyalists ladies in Spain set out to put an end to what they felt was “intrusive and uncomradely” in the traditional Spanish way of flirting. Women, they said were workers and citizens just like me, not mere objects of sex, and so should not be subjected to personal remarks from unknown admirers on the public streets.
Which is to say: Catcalling has been out of style since before WWII.
Here is the most important thing to know about dating/life/humanity: “Men’s greatest fear is that women will laugh at them, while women’s greatest fear is that men will kill them.” Margaret Atwood said this.
If you feel you need to speak to a stranger, don’t speak to them when they might feel vulnerable (alone, dark, at night, in a dodgy area) and ideally, get introduced by their social circle. This goes for women speaking to men as well’ it’s called manners. If you wouldn’t go up to them when with their friends, you don’t deserve their company because you wouldn’t fit into their class, why make it awkward for them knowing they have to reject you? Yet the ghetto types, lowest SES of all, and criminals to boot (so actually a physical danger), try to impose themselves on women. Imagine being a high SES male, walking along in a suit on the way to work minding your own business, and the homeless guys or unemployed kept following you, talking about how nice your suit was (maybe touching it, despite your protests) and threatening to mug you (oh, the things I could do with that money…). Money being a synonym for your body. That’s how it feels. You can’t be friendly with someone, unless you’re already friends, already acquainted. Stop calling it ‘friendly’, when it’s imposing. Dictionaries exist.
On the other hand, I’ve heard men frequently complain of large groups of women judging them and bothering them when alone, especially hen parties….yes, that’s how it feels, exactly. Except approaching a group is a choice, and comes with the possibility of rejection. You take a chance, it’s going to happen, the higher you aim, the more it happens. No need to bitch about it, though.
In public, you are just a normal citizen, and your rights to personal space need be respected.
Dressing well and taking care of yourself is expected, it’s normal, it isn’t an invitation to strangers like a prostitute. Those women will talk to you.
OT: sexual remarks are not flirting, they’re rude. Flirting is subtle.
All the more attractive women find it insecure, they just assume a man is interested, they don’t need to be told. We can read body language. And the desperation of hitting on women from a class band out of their league makes it quite funny, that they think it might impress us? Since when has poor impulse control impressed rich people?
What women hear;
WE WANT ATTENTION.
GIVE ME ATTENTION.
YOU WON’T LOOK AT ME UNLESS I’M SHOUTING AT YOU.