Saturday, October 05, 2002

Is there a reason my life should go from bad to worse? Times like these make me think that maybe there is a god, and he's standing in front of me thumping his middle finger against my breast bone, saying, "I knew I could make you cry, you little baby." There is a god, and he sounds just like my oldest brother.

No sleep. Well, some sleep, eventually, but I woke up at 5:30, crying before I even had time to properly take a breath and open my eyes. Maybe I was crying in my sleep, I don't know. I can't even describe how awful the whole experience was, and I'm not going to get over it any time soon.

This afternoon I finally went back to bed for a few minutes, I needed some rest before practice. I know I slept for at least fifteen minutes, but then the phone rang. This almost indecipherable voice said, "Uhhhhh...Susan?" There was a lot of noise in the background, and in my haze I automatically assumed it was Dave from Lowe's calling about our cabinets. But I said, "What?" because I didn't really understand what he was saying.

"Is this Susan--" and he mispronounced my last name (as does everybody), and then spelled it, and in that moment I remembered that this guy has called our house before. Last weekend, or the one before that, Catherine answered the phone and she described it in exactly the same way--some guy, hard to understand with all the background noise, and he started the conversation with "Uhhhh, Susan?" He hung up when she said no. She had thought at first it was Dave from Lowe's, too, but obviously it wasn't.

Anyway, for some reason I suddenly also realized it wasn't Dave from Lowe's, but I still wasn't awake enough to think, "Hang up the phone!" I just said, "No," as if I could deny that was my last name when I had clearly already let him know he had the right first name. He spelled the name again, and I said, no, he has the wrong number.

"This is your high school buddy, Joey Smith," he said. Well, there was no Joey Smith in my high school, and even if there was, that would have been 2000 miles away, right? And he asked me, what was my last name, then? "What makes you think I'd tell you that?" I asked, and looking back, it amazes me I'm trying to have a conversation with this guy at all, I know better than that. But I'm sleep-deprived.

Why would I tell him that? "Because I have your address and I'm coming over." He said something else, but I hung up on him and didn't catch it. And then I freaked out. I'm in bed, my clothes are on the floor where I'd dropped them, and what am I supposed to do now?

The only thing I could think to do was call Catherine, and then just as she picks up, I remember the back door is hanging open because Jack was running in and out. I tell Catherine to hang on, grab a shirt, lock and slam the back door, and then babble it all out to her. What should I do? I obviously can't go to the neighbors, they would not exactly provide a safe haven.

Catherine calls the police. I get dressed, remember my shoes are on the back porch because they had mud on them, and do I open the back door and grab them, or put on some other pair of shoes, which seems like a stupid thing to worry about, but none of my shoes have insoles because I take them out and throw them away, because I wear orthotics and if I have to run from some whacko, wouldn't it be nice to have my orthotics or at the very least insoles? Obviously, I'm completely panicked.

So then what? I wait. And wait. The only weapon I have is a hockey stick. And a butcher knife, but I don't want to get a knife out in case Jack jumps up and hurts himself on it. So I have a hockey stick.

How completely stupid it is to spend 45 minutes in your kitchen gripping a hockey stick because some whacko picked your name at random out of a phone book for some fun and games? Except it wasn't exactly random, I'm sure it was the same guy as before. Maybe he has a list of names he picks out and he just keeps at them until he scares the crap out of some poor woman.

I was pretty glad to see that cop on my front porch. He said he'd add our house to the patrol list. I'm not sure how seriously he took the whole thing, and looking back, I guess I did over-react (but god, how vulnerable a woman feels when she's naked and alone and threatened), but he did say that I shouldn't hesitate to call 911 should any strangers show up at our house, or even if we see someone passing by who looks suspicious.

Buddy, I wanted to say, look around you. My entire neighborhood is suspicious. Strange men walk through my yard every day. Which one is the rapist?

Not a very pleasant way to wake up from a nap. This has been one long, horrid week, and I really need some sleep, but the wind is rattling the window panes, and I'm still jumpy, and damnit, I wish that god guy would stop trying to crack my sternum.

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