My first time was rape, but she didn’t say anything
till eight months later, when she told her brother Mookie, head of the student
security task force. Mookie got angry and crouched behind my Lincoln one
morning before school, waited for me to come outside, then snuck up and bonked
me with an elephant turd, which is a triangular piece of concrete used to keep
cars off lawns. Now my lip’s curled permanently and my other eye always blinks.
After my ex-folks heard about Beckony and how she was a virgin when their one
and only forced his manhood inside of her, they said, “Ronald Rope, fuck you.”
They never really said that, or said anything, they just gave all my stuff away
to poor kids, changed the locks and never talked to me again. Only Russ visited
me in the hospital. Russ told me all kinds of folks at school were fixing to
bonk me upside the head with elephant turds to defend Beckony’s honor. One time
Russ came with this rubbery-looking girl called Debra and said she was raped by
her step-dad all the time and how Debra thought Beckony made it all up because
she was drunk when we made love and wanted back her purity and couldn’t stand
folks thinking she’d gone and gave it away to a loser like me. Debra just sat
there, her scabbed elbows on her knees, a look like her face was about ready to
slide off. Russ paced around my bed, loosing his tie a lot. He always wore a
shirt and tie to school, even though it was public and ninety degrees year
Lipton look awfully happy for some girl got raped real bad. Debra knows. Look
at her. There’s a girl got raped-a-lot written all over her face. Debra’s been
raped every way you can imagine. Every day. Every night. Sometimes all day.
Sometimes that bastard rapes her while she eats, but when you’ve been raped a
billion times, are you really gonna always notice? Roper? You awake?”
told her friends, her friend’s friends, and Mookie’s friends, so that when they
threw me out of the hospital, these feet didn’t get mid-way to Russ’s Cadillac
before Jimmy Dragolopolous came running and screaming from behind a bush with a
cinderblock and bonked me on the other side of my head. Jimmy was Beckony’s new
boyfriend, her first real boyfriend, actually. He’d just immigrated from Greece
and had a glass eye from riding in back of a car that crashed, where his face
landed on the shifter, which had no cover. Russ saw me lying on the ground
bleeding and told me later how he went and beat Jimmy something awful with a
bicycle chain he kept under his seat. They let me back in to the hospital.
That’s when my eye never stopped blinking and made tears all the time.
at this too,” Russ told me on another visit, this time with a girl called K.C.,
a volleyball player in gym shorts and a tank-top who rubbed his shoulders while
he sat there stirring the spork in my hospital pudding, telling me, “How could
you even rape that beast? She’s, what is she, a buck eighty, before a shit?
You’re over six feet four and weigh one hundred and nineteen pounds on a good
day, like before you got your brains bashed in.”
that,” K.C. told Russ’s shoulders.
he said, “She rapes you. ‘sides, you’re the lankiest, scaredest, nicest guy in
the whole school.”
agreed and said all the girls thought of me as sweet and soft-spoken, but in a
loveable retard kind of way.
was my response, because it’s hard to say “thanks” when your head’s in a cast
and your jaw’s wired shut.
thank me, Roper,” he leaned forward, breathing heavy, “Everyone thinks you did
it. Yeah. Whole school knows you been writing her poems since fourth grade,
watching her laugh in your face all these years, figures you snapped. Now they
want to cave in your head with stuff till you’re dead and where’s it leave me,
Russ meant was being best pals with an insane crazy rapist like me made some
girls not want to fellate him between classes in his Cadillac. Also, as my
oldest and only friend, he felt the need to whip everyone with a rusted bicycle
chain who wanted to bonk me, until they sent him to jail for many counts of
battery for three and a half years. By then, they’d threw me out of the
hospital again and people stopped assaulting my head with concrete objects.
Since my folks disknowed me, (and they did, even though that thing about the
locks and the poor kids only kind of happened, sort of a
that’s-what-they-really-meant kind of thing) there wasn’t any choice but to
drop out and take a job at the yogurt kiosk in the Pleasant Hill Mall, which
gave me lots of time to think, and soon made me pick up a pencil and write
stuff down. Lots of stuff. Pretty soon that stuff was a book. That book is now
The Code. Every year since starting, something inside made me keep writing it
over and over in wire notebooks. At night, the dictionary became the path to
knowledge, and the tool for making the Code what it is now. A few years later,
Code in hand, a little bank gave me a business loan and the old me said so long
to the world of yogurt kiosks. The new me runs The Rape Crisis Centre For the
Fearful and Unaware. I’m CEO of it. The office and classrooms are squeezed
between the Army recruiting center and Magnet Universe, in a strip mall near
the Happy Grove forest. At R Double C Double F U we offer counseling for
potential victims and predators, classes, seminars, workshops and by the end of
the year, hope hope, a state supposium. Don’t be confused by the word
“victims.” If my life has a meaning, if six years in the business teaches you
one thing, it is that we are all victims of lustful depravicity. Sometimes, we
get brutally raped with a suggestionary word or a flirtist stare, or – ahem - a
long history of unwanted love poems. But you can read all this stuff in the
Code. Go to my website: www.rapeworld.net
to order it. You’ll be glad you did.
night means the three-hour weekly lecture on the Principles and Dynamics of
Intercourse as Percepted by the Female (PDIAPBF). Lil’, my Vietnamese
assistant, tells me it will be a class of three. A word on the program: While
we offer a certificate of credit equivalent to one year of study toward an AS
degree in Human Sexuality, most of the students audit. Some folks find the
subject difficult to stomach, the methods too aggressive, or don’t think
they’re at risk, when, really, who are they even kidding, because why did they
show up in the first place? Sometimes Lil’ tells me that screaming at people
who walk out in the middle of lecture “may not be in keeping with pedagogical
lore,” and also, that it’s bad for business, especially since we’re almost
broke. As a student of education doing an extended internship with this
organization, she’s no dummy, but these guts tell me Lil’s been raped at least
fifteen times in her twenty-six years. She may not even know this has happened.
Just like Beckony Lipton, a long period of time could pass before she realizes,
“Hey, that’s not what I wanted,” and feel the dam of emotions come pouring out
of her like a sift. But Lil’s my right arm in a lot of ways – she keeps her
thumb in the dyke so someone like me can do what he does. Hers is a wound that
may not heal anyway.
the beige jumpsuit to class adds an authority kind of thing to my technique,
kind of like, “Hey, pay attention, you just might learn something about
yourself, about the human condition and all about how not to get raped ever
again by folks and stuff.” The first thing you should always tell them is,
“You’ve all been raped. By the end of class, if you don’t think this is true,
then I, Ronald Rope, loathe you.” In tonight’s class, some short kid with a
nose like it’s taped and pulled to his forehead, only it’s not taped, it just
looks like that, snorts when I say this and forces me to run right up to his
desk, get in his face and squint real mean and breathe heavily. Works every
time too. He just stares with his mouth open. I ask the nose his name and he
says Tim. Tim’s a classic rapist in training and he’ll be made a sample of
soon. But first, it’s always good to outline the overall female responses to
the probability of intercourse.
“No means no, no?” They’re slow to answer, but they
always do. “Wrong,” is always my response. “Sometimes it means no. But ask
yourselves, what does yes mean? Does it really mean yes? Sometimes, sure, but
other times yes can mean no, like if Mr. Okstein here, - stand up Charlie –
what if Charlie’s about to place his manhood into - Emily, would you mind?”
Emily stands next to Charlie. Charlie’s in his seventies. Emily’s pink-skinned
with gray and black hair, about twenty-five. “If young Emily wants Charlie for
more than a one-night stance, she might say yes to Charlie inserting his
erection into her self, but does that mean she really wants him to do it? If
she says no, she’s afraid Charlie won’t want to see her again. What we
end up with is an act of violence and I hate to be the one to lay it on you
ladies and gentlemen, but percepting the experience as negative, it’s a
violation of section 1.1 of the Code.” They all three look at each other. “Now,
we can’t expect Charlie to be a mind reader. The man’s got desires and impulses
same as you and me. But we can teach Charlie, and all of you, how to
interpretate your partner’s reactions and responses so unappreciated
intercourse and henceward the assault of that person can be avoided. And that,
folks, is just the beginning of what we do here. So lean back and settle in,
‘cause this night’s a long time coming.”
asks me over for coffee after every session. It’s not that she’s unattractive,
or Vietnamese, but coffee will never make it into the maker, believe me. Then
what? Sometimes this sort of invitation is a test. Maybe that’s why Lil’ does
it all the time, because she needs to keep me sharp, on my toes, where I need
to be. Because once you’ve raped, even if you didn’t know you did it when you
did it, the Code states implicitly you’ve given up your right to insert your
erection into anything ever again, even your hand. Believe me, I know. I wrote
it. Breaking the Code means you’ve repressed into your old self. Kind of like a
dog who learns neat tricks, such as standing on two feet, or sticking out it’s
paw as a greeting – it may seem like it can act human, maybe it’s even cute and
adorable, but it’s still a dog. Tonight’s answer to Lil’ when we lock up is,
“Ain’t happening kiddo,” for a different reason. It’s because Russ said to come
by the station at ten o’clock for a double secret meeting and to make sure and
wear my jumpsuit so it looks like I pump gas too. He spoke in Pig Latin, which
means something’s really about to go down big time.
A mosquito keeps gnawing
on my wrist while we smoke Russ’s menthols out by the bathroom, a sure sign of
some peskiness ahead. With one swift stroke he whips his old bicycle chain and
sends the hungry mosquito into the beyond. These cheeks don’t so much as
flinch, but a tear finds its way down my face, the first in three minutes. Russ
cups my face in his palm, looks both ways before speaking.
the Mook. The cops wouldn’t have him, but he still wears a holster and badge,”
he says. A college boy pulls up into the self-service lane in a jeep. We decide
to speak in our made-up language of gestures (MULOG), just to cut it safe.
takes three quick drags and mashes the butt on his hand. His eyes juice up.
This is not good.
to make sure we’re clear, I pinch my nipples and pretend to pass gas with my
bites his tongue and sighs, then fills his cheeks with air, slaps them and
lifts one leg like a dog about to you know what, which confuses me, since Russ
had a medical proceeding not so long ago, and might still be in pain. Doesn’t
matter. I’ve caught his whiff, and it’s worse than you can imagine. This is my
curse, even after predicating my life to ridding the world of bastards like me,
and protecting the Beckony’s everywhere. What Russ has told me in not so
double-secret hush-baby code is how Beckony’s fiancée left her for a waitress
at Friendlys and now she’s back in therapy. Word on the street is Mookie thinks
this could be my fault, so he’s getting ready to finish the job, and that job is
I say the only thing someone could at a time
like this, that is, I lay flat on my back and pretend to be a turtle trapped in
an overturned shell. He looks down and nods at me with half-shut eyes, then
hocks one up and heads inside to the cash register, swinging the chain over his
It’s not his problem anymore. Besides, he’s
got three weeks left till the end of his probation. The moon is full, which
means it’s just me, myself and me this time.
how my ass works best.
That night three women
who range from rail-tie-thin to orca-fat - a blonde, a brunette and a redhead -
wait for me outside a motel room where I’ve raped again, and throw bananas at
me in my sleep while I try to escape in a golf cart with no tires. In real life
this means it’s time to shift things at the rape center into high gear, because
chances are good I’ll be dead before the end of the week.
“Sometimes yes means
maybe. Let’s say you go home together after a hot date and things make it from
heavy petting action to a little whoa ho ho. Downstairs everything is fully
functionable. At this point the lady says something like, ‘Do you have a
prophylactic condom,’ and you say…”
Picture a gallery of
five open mouths, drool strings and eyes as wide as tennis balls and you’re here
at the R Double C Double F U for my Wednesday night Advanced Workshop in
Sensitivity Training and Body Response Appreciation (AWISTABRA).
I cup a hand behind my
ear and say, “Sorry, couldn’t hear you. Do. You. Have. A. Proph. Y. Lac. Tic.
Now an awkward chorus of
“Of course you do.
Because folks, remember section 23.8 of the Code: Getting into bed with the
intent to participate in sexual activity without some sort of contraconception
is rape, rape and rape again and that is because….”
buzzing sound here.
“Because the desire for
pleasure over responsibleness is catamount to a full-scale assault and excuse
me for saying this but anyone will tell you… Uhh, ladies, where do you think
Two older ladies wearing
business blouses and cocktail skirts make their way to the door.
“Or do you think you’re
exemplified from this discussion?”
The pock-marked red-head
says, “I think you’re crass and idiotic.”
Amidst laughter, they
flee. Thank goodness this has happened a number of times. The slightest
hesitation right now means the loss of control and authority over the rest of
these vulnerable lambs. Someone’s got to go down so the ship doesn’t have to.
These eyes land on Tim, the boy with the small strange nose.
“’scuse me. What was
He points to himself.
“Yeah you. Do you see
any other pig-nosed, ass-juice, tweezer-dicks who think it’s okay to ogle young
women in my classroom who want to learn about protecting themselves from
carnalled predators? I’m looking. All I see is you.”
“Who’d I ogle?”
“You calling me stupid?
Mister I hope for your sake you’re not calling me a liar?”
Sitting next to Tim is
Emily, who, bless her little heart, starts in with the denial, like they always
“Ron, I don’t think he
was ogling me.”
“Emily please. You’re
safe now, all right sweety. No one can hurt you here.”
I tell Tim to stand up.
He does. I say no, in front of the class, and push him over to my desk. I tell
Charlie and Emily, “Take a long hard look ladies and gentlemen, because this is
the face of a walking, talking, breathing erection of the purple headed
Charlie says, “I don’t
have to listen to this.”
“Oh yes you do, Mr.
Okstein. And you will sit there, and you will learn stuff, and if you move
another muscle I will report you to my contacts in the Sexual Abusers Task
Force, which I shouldn’t have to tell you extend far and wide.”
He leaves anyway.
Tim says, “Maybe I’m
pig-nosed, but my mouth ain’t mangled, and I don’t cry every two minutes.” I
backslap him four times. Juice starts flooding those beady little rapist
eyeballs. Emily jumps to her feet. What happens next is what should have
happened to me before the beast unleashed its tentacles on the world.
It’s what the Code refers to as a demonstration of the fifth kind:
Exposing the monster.
“Remove those khakis,
Another backhand answers
“These are cords, man!”
I ask him why he comes
here and remind him he was ogling Emily like he wanted to show her something,
and that this something is something she would like to see.
Emily says this is
assault, and tells Tim not to do it.
“You can keep your pants
on by telling the truth: Why do you really come to my classes?
He wipes his tears and
looks at the floor. “Meet chicks,” he confesses.
I bonk him with a
stapler from the desk. He goes down hard, bleeding from his brow. I tell Emily
to take a short break and come back in ten.
Lil shoves me out the
back door when the cops screech up. She says go someplace and lay low, she’ll
contact me when things blow over. Then she ogles me and says something in her
native tongue, which must be flirtist, since she narrows her eyes even more and
whispers this to me. Just to cut it safe, I jog through the woods behind the
strip mall about a mile deep and sit for a while. It’s important to remain
very, very still and breathe in small puffs to avoid making any noise, because
aside from the real cops, Mookie could be steps away from finding and bonking
me. For nourishment, I carve away at an oak with a jagged rock and try to suck
out the sap, which is not exactly plentiful, if you catch my whiff. Still,
treating myself like a wild animal is important, because there was a time, not
so long ago, when it was me who behaved like a forest creature. For good measure,
I make myself eat some random dirt and branch scrapings, which, in a way, kind
of tastes like my dog’s you know what. But Checker died over a year ago.
Another exercise in what the Code describes as emotional forbidinization.
Sometimes yes means I
really want to cuddle is what I would have taught the class had Tim and Emily
not mutinied, forcing me to finish early. Say you’re in your car with a young
lady at the trailhead to the Happy Grove forest and you’re having lots of
salivated exchanges, real steamy stuff, then you get it into your head that
placing your hand on one of her lactation devices is not only something you
should engorge in, but that she even derides pleasure from this. But the way
she looks at you, and cups your face in her hands complies a whole other
intention, if I’m correcting right. While one day she might wish for you to
insert yourself into her pouch of life, can’t you see this is more of a tender
type of moment thing and how sometimes you can make love without your manhood?
Maybe the only way to aspire this kind of education is to have the fortune of
someone nearby, who happens out of the woods as your hand doesn’t seem to care
about anyone’s feelings, who just might be the type of person who feels
compelled to bonk you through your open window with a large stone among many
that line the beginning of the trail and scream section 48.5 of the Code, which
states, “When a woman looks at you a certain way, she may even be prepared to
allow you to do the things you wish to do, but you should not do them, you
should be tender, nurturing and loving because not doing so is to divulge
yourself in an act of personal pleasure which can never be constitutionalized
as anything other than one of the most implorable forms of rape that inflicts the
world,” while blood squirts out of your
skull and the helpless girl you’ve so valiantly attacked screams and wiggles in
misery for your well-being when she should be grateful you’ve been subdued and
will never do this to her again. But when students under your care decide, hey,
maybe calling the cops over a little aggresional persuasion tactics upon a
wretched poop-stain of a pupil seems like the thing to do, how exactly would
you go about handling the situation?
Case in point.
Russ lives above the gas station in
an old storage room that now stores Russ and his belongings. The place smells
kind of like the way it smelled when I was six and filled a plastic Easter egg
with my spit and left it in the back of mom’s station wagon, then opened it a
couple weeks later. Russ stands by the closet naked except for an army-colored
tank top and a five-pound weight inside a sock that’s hanging from his manhood.
A few weeks ago he paid for a proceeding where the doctor stuffed his manhood
with something to make it bigger. The heavy sock is supposed to help.
says, “Shut the door closed,” so I do. He pulls on his sock a few times and
that’s when these eyes land on something uncondoneable and that something is a
pornographic movie playing on the world’s smallest television on Russ’s cot,
only everyone in the movie has manhood.
“This movie of yours, makes me think
you’ve been ogling me for a long long time,” I say, and feel my twitching eye
“He came,” says Russ, “right where
I look down and take a few steps
forward. Nothing to speak of.
Russ takes a seat on the cot, rubs
his face and says, “You blew it, Roper. Now, they’re all coming.”
He sees my bloody stone and nods
before holding one nostril and shooting something long and yellow out the other
onto the wood floor. In MULOG, this means there’s something in the closet. With
careful heels I amble over and dehinge the hook, pull the door open and the
truth becomes unmistakably so.
“Oh, Russ. What did you go and do
“For you. Same as always. Except
those two guards inside, and the Jesus kids with the backpacks.”
I don’t need to ask if he’s dead.
You’d have a tough time prying that bicycle chain off his neck. But the way his
nightstick’s glued inside his fingers, and his pants are stripped down to his
ankles, it’s clear Russ made him suffer.
I shut the closet door.
Russ lights a cigarette backwards
and squeezes both knees together, a not so indirect way of saying there’s no
way he’s going back to jail.
“I know it.”
Russ stares at my stone and chuckles
for a while, then he says, “I’ll make this easy on you,” and turns his back.
It takes three tries to fully brain
him. The manhood’s on the television help.
At least a million cops surround the
parking lot of my apartment. Dressed as one myself, I pass undetected and
shimmy up a tree and through my window, which has been left open for some
reason. In bed, my thoughts sift to section 103.8 of the code, which states
that sometimes yes means I want to feel you inside me so much. This
sentimentality does not mean what people think it means. It means something
else, and that something is, “I’m so vulnerable. Please don’t ever leave me. I
don’t want to be alone anymore.” Understanding this takes years of study. You
might think of me as one of those seeing-yourself dogs. It’s true, you’re blind
and helpless, libel to walk right into other people and their stuff and get a
massive head wound, probably end up squished by a bus unless you decide to let
me help you. But hey, it’s your life. Hope you’re all real happy. Because have
a good fun time finding someone else who’s suffered his way through the cracks
like me. All you people ever did was bonk me upside my head with hard objects
and laugh at the way my face looked and stuff.
Something pokes my back and this
makes me think there’s a cop under my bed, come to get me and take me to jail,
no doubt where an animal like me belongs in the first place. Now Russ and some
African-American police officer lay murdered in Russ’s room above the gas station.
But this cop under my bed is no cop, this cop is Lil’, my Vietnamese assistant,
who slides out and crawls onto my bed and onto me like a wet lizard. Her lack
of clothing makes me jump and prop myself against the headboard, but before my
pleads and protests can save me, Lil’s unzipped the fly section of my jumpsuit
and taken my manhood into her self. My bloodied and brain-covered stone rests
on the night table beside a handwritten version of the Code. There exist many
reasons why I restrain from braining Lil’ until she is dead and none of them
have anything to do with finding the experience of her pleasuring my manhood
pleasurable. Maybe the certainty that the man she lusts and pines for will be
dead by dawn has something to do with it, or maybe it’s common sense, since
bashing in Lil’s brains – something absolutely justified at this point - would
make considerable noise and alert the police to my being inside the apartment.
Plus, there was always that last step in the revolution of my slipping through
the cracks and that step is experiencing the horror on the other side. And it’s
pretty horrible all right. So horrible it makes me pass out.
By morning Lil’s fled
and from the pain in my stomach, it’s clear she’s taken six years of oppressed
rape juice with her. Outside the window, the millions of cops have subtracted
themselves to one lone squad car, but for reasons of safety and insurances, I
again wear the dead cop’s uniform over my jumpsuit and climb out the window,
scurry and launch myself over some neighboring shrubbery, then head out on
old station wagon’s got a peacock on the roof that watches me walk up the
driveway and sit atop the small un-mown hill in the center. From inside the
house, what sounds like my father’s voice crying “Ronald?” rings out, but that
damn cock keeps staring until my mind starts seeing things, things like the
last time I was here and got bonked real good, and how even though my folks
kind of did try to visit me and call me for a few years, that’s not how they
really wanted it, because who were they even kidding, sending checks and
showing up at my apartment begging to talk things over and screaming “Why,
Ronald?” and “Please come back to us!” at the heavens, like having a criminal
rapist for a son was something they could live with. My mind settles on a day
that might have been, at the supposium that never quite happened, where people
come in massed attendance for the first Fully Interactive Rape Prevention
Seminar (FIRPS), as the last thing I see in this world is an aged and balding
Mookie climb over Ma’s station wagon with an elephant turd in hand, smiling
with the teeth of a shark, stalking his way up the hill, dressed in a white
shirt and blue tie, a leather shoulder holster at his side, and he bonks me with
the sharp end, and there is no light or leaving my body, just a loop of that
day that never was, forcing those teenagers to strip and lay on the desk for
the whole class and how they like it, and the class screams at them and at me
and when the boy tells the girl beneath him, “I’m gonna finish, oh God, I’m
gonna finish,” and the girl says, “I want you to finish. I want you to finish
all over me,” I whisper in her ear, “Now stop this,” and when the girl refuses,
I pick up a chair to bonk her attacker, when a tiny voice from the class, Lil’s
voice, which for some reason sounds just like my father’s says, “Hold on. Hold
on just a little bit longer, Ronald.”