This blog post is dedicated to a wonderful, amazing member of “my team,” Carol.
I woke up this morning at 4 AM. (Why am I doing that? I’m working on it, people.)
Almost immediately, I came up with these ideas for blog posts today:
- Fear of humans — and other creatures — loving me too much. (I’m not ready, I decided, to write about THAT, yet.)
- “What’s in a Name?” (about what it’s like to have a name that nobody can pronounce or spell and which some people seem to make fun of).
I had decided on the latter topic (thanks to my childhood friend, Debbie, with whom I’ve recently reconnected via Facebook and blogging here).
Before I started writing, I took a quick look at the news headlines at cnn.com. (Why, oh why, am I doing that?) (I’m working on it, people.)
And I saw this article, titled “Carjacking victim recalls differing demeanors of bombing suspects.”
I would like to make this a short blog post, since I think there’s A CHANCE I might be able to fall back asleep for a little while. So I would like to present two quotes from this cnn.com article and confess about why I relate to these excerpts.
Okay? Here we go …
Danny had stopped his vehicle to send a text when Tamerlan walked up and tapped on the window. The suspect, allegedly carrying a handgun, opened the door and got into the passenger seat.
When I was 22 years old, I was driving back to where I lived with my roommate Barbara, in an apartment in Cambridge. It was late at night. My memory is that I had been visiting with my long-time friend, Jon, and we had been talking about our relationships with other people, as well as other topics. (By the way, believe it or not, Jon appeared in my blog post, a few days ago, here.)
After I parked my car, in back of my apartment building, and got out of it, there was a man waiting for me. As soon as I saw him, my heart sank. Sure enough, he meant me harm. He took me into my car. I was sitting in the passenger seat.
Under questioning by Tamerlan, Danny played up being Chinese and tried to humanize himself by talking about cell phones and family. Danny told CNN he felt being Chinese helped save his life.
That’s exactly what I tried to do with this guy, in 1975: “humanize” myself, because I had recently read an article — in Newsweek, I think — about how rape was an act of rage. What I got out of that article was this: one thing that might help me survive would be to humanize myself to the rapist. So, I said everything I could think of, in service of that. And I told him that I had a pacemaker and to be careful. And he stopped. And I said, “I’m scared.” And he said, “I’m scared for you, too.” And I had no idea what that meant, when he said that. I thought I was still in danger.
But, I wasn’t. He left, soon after that.
During the carjacking, Danny thought about a girl in New York whom he really liked.
He thought he’d never see her again.
I thought about my roommate, Barbara, asleep upstairs in our apartment. I thought I would never see her again.
I did. I saw her the next morning. Now, she is my biggest supporter, as I write this blog every day.
Wow. That’s pretty amazing, isn’t it?
I’ll tell you what’s most amazing to me, right now: Maybe this topic IS related to topic # 1 (see above) (as well as to how I can be scared by other people’s anger). (I’m working on both of those, people!)
It’s incredible what happens, sometimes, when you are “putting it into words.”*
Thanks for reading these words today, dear readers.
* This is a personal “shout-out,” to my faithful reader, Lena.