Let me say that my 20th birthday totally sucked because it was not a normal day. Believe me, it isn’t everyday -- and especially not every birthday -- that your Nana and the entire Eastern seaboard of the United States plus Vermont hears you sniffle on television and say, “And then he stuck his penis into my vagina.”
This is a good thing.
Because when they do hear you say that lovely, little sentence fragment, they totally, irrevocably freak.
Believe me, I know.
They all missed the first part of the six o’clock news story that stressed that college school students organized and participated in a mock trial. Or if they did hear it they somehow forgot the fact that MOCK means FAKE, which being old people you’d think they’d understand. Or maybe since they were older Americans, the closed captioning on their television couldn’t figure out the word MOCK and wrote MOP instead, or something, I didn’t know.
All I knew was that the closed captioning did a really good job writing it in all capital letters AND THEN HE STUCK HIS PENIS INTO MY VAGINA.
Right above these large white letters in a black text box was my sick looking face with the red nose and the runny, watery eyes as I sniffed and said my sentence fragment to the entire Eastern seaboard, grandparents and all. My sentence fragment, once again, not only included the words ‘penis’ and ‘vagina,’ it also had the word ‘my.’
Only I, Carrie Barnard, would be on television with a stuffy nose and red, watery eyes and a 101 degree fever, because only I would get sick for the mock trial we’d been preparing for all year. And only I would be dumb enough to play the rape survivor because Megan Hairymen* wimped out at the last minute because she had a pimple on her nose. Okay, it was a blemish the size of North Dakota, but way to not be a team player, there, Megan.
The phone calls at my house started flying in before my mom was done with her “I’m so proud of my little socially conscious baby doing such a good, brave thing” riff.
And in the entire bro-ha-ha that followed everyone forgot my birthday! Seriously, everyone. It was easily the worst birthday ever because I had to spend the entire day convincing people that I wasn’t recently sexually assaulted.
Did I get a cake?
Did I get a balloon?
Did my Nana give me a pair of Carebear pajamas that were size 6x even though I was 20? Did any of my friends jokingly give me My Little Pony figurines? Gift cards? Cash? Did my Dad send my a card with a $5 check in it?
Devyn, I implore you, that whatever you do this birthday do not participate in a televised mock trial in any capacity. I’m not even going to go into what happened to the guy who played the rapist. Not good… not good at all… He healed quickly though, right? Silver lining?
*Not her real name, but I totally wish it was because she deserved that name. No offense to her.
** I will give a free copy of NEED to a random commenter.
- Carrie Jones