As a storyteller who often sifts through the blender grind of my existence: the pulpy mash and grit of my childhood, history and culture, I am of the firm belief that no topic is too sacred, too painful or horrific that it does not bear being told through the lens of story. It is the way I personally process the world, bleeding the toxic poison of my both my child and womanhood onto paper in ink: a formalized bloodletting that pushes pain out of me. Often my more serious writing, and even my pulp-fiction, deals with cultures of violence and silence and ritualized physical and sexual abuse with not only pathos but wit and humour as well – a survival skill my mother taught me, and taught me well, to make lighthearted jokes of the most serious of matters. Why cry when you can laugh? Or as John Candy more accurately put it: Laughing on the Outside while Crying in the Inside. And so I have a bit of a rap for being a funny lady – a bit cheeky and someone often not to be taken so serious even when the most serious subjects threaten to cloud ponderously in the room.
However, the subject of if the topic of rape is off limits in story or even joke telling is a different question entirely than: Is Rape Never Funny? And I encourage you to read Chuck Wendig’s brilliant response to the latest “rape joke” controversy…this time brought on by Matthew Inman’s ill-considered The Oatmeal comic. But as for myself, I’d like to attempt to answer that question the only way I know how – by telling you a story: one that is most certainly true but written to you by a writer of fiction, or “pathological liar” if you prefer.
Last spring I went to New York and needed a place to stay. On a limited micro budget, I decided to use one of those websites that hooks you up with locals who have rooms and apartments to rent. Read more