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led astray

January 2013

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led astray

story time

This week's stress has dug into some interesting places in my head.  The interesting trips into memory land are exacerbated by people I haven't thought about in many years contacting me on facebook.  It's not bad, it's just different.  So this story is prominent today for no good reason I can tell.  This is a story about perceptions.

I was watching a movie with a good friend one night.  We were just chillin' and being friends.  But then, I never get warning that I'm about to learn something BIG from the universe.  So my friend, let's call him Y, and I are watching Dangerous Liaisons for the manyth time.  It's a period piece with gorgeous costumes and pretty people, perfect for another friend, let's call her X, who digs on that sort of thing. Friend X arrives and we point her towards the movie.  X looks at the screen for a few seconds and politely declines.  Y turns to me with the confused puppy face.  He thought X would love this movie!  And she would have, I told him, if she had walked in at any other moment than the rape scene.  "What rape scene?" he asked.  I didn't understand the question.  We had been watching the same movie.  I saw a rape scene, and I know Y saw it too.  What was happening in the scene did not register to Y as rape.  So I described the scene when Malkovitch's character manipulates and coerces Thurman's character not to protest and forces himself on her.  Y stopped.  I saw gears turning behind his eyes.  And then tears came from them.  He thought 'rape' meant a woman being beaten up and and sexed up under physical protest, a concrete image of the definition of the word.  This is no backward ignoramus, but a sensitive, progressive, learned, and intelligent guy, my friend Y.  And if this guy can be blinded by a notion of a thing, but then I remember back to another story, my own.  I didn't figure out I had been raped until 5 years later, at the prompting of another friend.  I had had the same preconceptions, that what was happening was uncomfortable and unfortunate, but it wasn't rape.  But it was.  I don't know why this is on my mind other than I'm just generally stressed.