In the same vein as my postings about Linda, there was another girl in my high school life who had a big impact on me and the current mental health issues I am having now.
Becky (may or may not be her real name, only she will know) was a popular girl. She hung with the popular kids in the cafeteria and she was attractive and athletic and funny and a total bitch!
There are two incidents with Madame B that I have not been able to shake and that I recently gained clarity on.
The first is that in our grade 11 social studies class she and I were assigned to the same desk grouping. In this class Ms. Lachance had the desks arranged in groups of four so that we would be at an advantage to do group work, of which there was plenty in this class. However, Ms. Lachance also knew that putting friends with friends it a bad idea so she assigned us to desks just to make sure that work would get done. So in my case, since I only had 6 friends, the luck of the draw was that I would be put with an enemey.
One day in class I was listening to my discman, (we were allowed to listen to music during study times) and Becky pulled the Cd case away from me to see what it was. It was Aimee Mann's first solo album "Whatever." Of course no one at Lakefield had never heard of her and since I listened to mainly non-mainstream music it was usually the case that no one had heard of what I was listening to. So I take off my headphones and ask for the jewel case back since she did not ask me for it, she just took it out of my bag.
She starts reading the track listing on the back and when she gets to song number 5 she says the title out loud "Put me on top" and then hands it back to me saying "Figures someone like you would listen to a song like that." I had no idea what she meant. The song was about being an underdog and wanting to be more, but not knowing how. Then it hit me that she thought that the song was about sex. It never really occurred to me that she would assume that my cultural interests were all about sex, but since I was out at that point in my high school career, it makes sense that someone who was ignorant would make that kind of assumption about me.
The second incident took place the same year, but in second semester when Becky and I had drama class together. Mr. Edwards was the teacher and I liked him all right, but he also taught math and I hated that subject so I could never really trust anyone who would mix the two subjects together and try to teach them. Albeit at seperate times, but still - math + drama = oil + water in my mind.
In this class I was once again assigned to be in a group with Becky (looking back I wonder if this was a conspiracy against me). In the group we had to come up with a theatrical presentation on a serious social issue. My suggestion was rape/sexual assault. I can not remember what I had in mind, but I had a great idea for a presentation and I was super gung ho about it. Becky was not.
Becky kept putting down my idea and saying that she was not comfortable with the subject and did not want to do a presentation on it. She was more popular, and therefore more persuasive and so she won. We did her idea on death and used Eric Claptons "Tears in Heaven" in it. I could have thrown up if I did not take acting so seriously.
In that class our final assignment was to do a short play that we had created and written and performed ourselves and then present to the class. Yippeee. I was thrilled to not be in a group with Becky.
However, when Becky's group did present guess what their play was about?
Yes that is right, the subject that she was so uncomfortable with was the main theme of their play and it was oddly structured and similiar to my idea. Which I had abandoned by this time, feeling defeated by the Queen B.
I was so angry.
Not only had she stolen my idea, but she had manipulated me to feel bad for her so that she could take it. But now in hindsight I can not help but see a correlation between the two incidents. Was part of the problem that she considered me to be such a pervert that she could not work with me on a sexual topic. Did she assume that I would want the rape project to be homocentric? (which I did not, the idea I had was about a woman being sexually assualted) Or was it more that she just assumed that I would get some sort of perverse pleasure out of the project which she did not want to be a part of.
I guess I will never know. But I do believe that this attitude was quite prevelant in my high school. That many of the people considered me to be sexually deviant and nothing more than that. That they could not see the individual. Like many people still do, all the say was the "man on man" action and assumed that was all I was about. I had to deal with this attitude on a daily basis, and I was not even aware that I was fighting it.