Betty always tells me, "Faye, it's just like talking and you're a great talker so you could do this in a snap." I doubt that very much.
Let's see. Betty and I have another sister and we have a brother as well. Betty always puts down her looks and acts like she's not pretty but she is. She was more into sports than I was. I did the whole dainty girl thing. Big mistake, if you ask me. I worried too much about what people would think. I think Betty confuses dainty with "pretty." She is correct about her daughter, however. Betty's daughter is the prettiest. She looks just like our grandmother and mother (both beautiful women) when they were little girls.
Betty always played sports. If there was a kickball game somewhere on the block, Betty was there. She knew more people by the time she was five than I did at that time (and I'm three years older). She was always up for anything. And she always had a talent for any sport or game. And the other thing she was always doing was reading.
Betty read everything growing up. Comic books, magazines, books, mystery books. She was reading Ellery Queen in third grade. She was always reading books far ahead of what you'd expect from someone her age. When Betty was in fifth grade, she had a problem. Her teacher had her after class. I was a big middle schooler and I'm looking all over for her. Finally find her in a classroom with the teacher.
You don't call Betty a liar. She doesn't lie. She's the only one of us who doesn't. She broke a lamp once and our father sees it and he's asking who broke it and Betty just says "Me." The rest of us, we would have tried to weasel out of it. Betty's never been that way.
So the teacher called her a liar. And about what? There was a book drive, a read-a-thon. And Betty got people to sign up (as did others in her class) for money. I think it was ten cents a book for every book they read for the month. And Betty had something like 51 books. And the teacher was saying she was a liar.
Betty read a book a day pretty much all the time. And there were 30 or 31 days in that month and she worked hard on the weekends reading for the read-a-thon. So it was completely possible and realistic. And I'm telling the teacher this but she doesn't want to listen to an eighth grader and joke was on her because you know my parents were going to go up there.
Which they did.
And that was the only time I remember Betty being in trouble in school. She did pranks and stuff and would get sent to the principal's office -- she wasn't a goody-goody -- but she always owned her mistakes and admitted to them and took whatever punishment was being offered.
Betty's site has reflected her really well. First, you'll remember, it was the story of Betinna. It was an online, comic novel. I loved it. And begged her to tell me what happened to Betinna. It wasn't a happy ending. Be glad she stopped when she did so Betinna had some joy.
Betty was already for Hillary before she changed the blog. But she felt she needed to be blogging and mixing it up. Because Hillary Clinton was getting beat up. And she especially felt that as a Black woman she needed to have her voice out there because Team Barack was playing the race card at the drop of a hat.
Like Betty, I voted for Ralph Nader in the general election. That was a big, big step for me. I usually show up and just vote Democratic straight ticket. On the amendments and things like that, I bring a cheat sheet based on my dad's responses, my mom's and the radio. (I refuse to read the Atlanta Journal Constitution -- it's a racist paper that usually exists to attack Black people and they think they can get away with that due to the staff. No, they can't get away with it.)
I was glad to see Betty (and all the others in the community) weigh in calling out the attacks on the two women who may have been raped by Julian Assange.
I told you I was "dainty." Stupidest mistake I could have made. When I was 16, I was stupid and thought I knew everything. (I'm much older now and I still don't know everything.) And my 17-year-old new boyfriend wanted us to "spend time together." Which I wanted to but he wanted sex.
I didn't realize that. And, unlike Betty, I had no upper body strength. Betty played sports. A guy tried to cross the line with my sister once and she busted his nose.
So anyway, I am fighting "Richard" off and with very little luck. And I am screaming my head off. And I got very lucky because my father had found out I was not at my best friend's house and went to find where I was.
He didn't yell at me, he didn't scream. He didn't try to freak me out with, "This is why you listen to us." He told me the boy was a creep and that it wasn't my fault and that I'd find some good guys out there too.
He says now, when we talk about it, that he was probably just so scared. Seeing his daughter about to be raped. But that wasn't it. He's always been a great father and it's for moments like those.
I wasn't raped and I don't want to pretend I know what that's like, I don't. I do know the fear that it's about to happen. And I do know that you do blame yourself for a long time before you realize that (as my dad was saying) it's not your fault. I also know about the whisper campaign.
"Richard," apparently, was worried I was going to put the word out on him at school. So he put it out on me. He invented this story where we were having sex and I was -- let's just say gassy -- and he started laughing at me and I ran off in tears.
I was mortified. To have been as scared as I was and then to have lies told about me, lies that made me look like a joke? It was so hurtful. (My brother found out and kicked "Richard"'s ass in the school parking lot and made him confess that he was lying.)
I don't know that the two women were raped. I don't know that they weren't. But I do know that they may have been and if they were they don't deserve the attacks that Naomi Wolf and Naomi Klein and Michael Moore and Dave Lindorff and Michael S. Smith and Keith Olbermann and so many others have been launching on them.
I don't even go to World Can't Wait now days because they're audience is as much a part of this as are the names I listed. And Debra Sweet or whoever could do one post where they said, "Lay off the women." They've refused to do that.
What's taken place has just really been very revealing.
Okay, so that is my first and last blog post. And I told Betty I'd probably write about the near rape and I did. And I also babbled and meandered. It was fun. I do see why Betty does this. But she is much, much better at it than I am. Now she's going to show me how to put in the snapshot.
"Iraq snapshot" (The Common Ills):