date rape

In the 1970’s, 1980’s I worked as an International Telephone Exchange operator in Sydney; it was a mixed bag employer, lots of hippies & druggies. One such fellow worker was a hippie guy who rode his bike to work. One day he asked me home to dinner; I should have been warned as we literally had not shared a word’s conversation prior to that moment. In another age, the etiquette would have been to refuse, as we simply shared no common ground, & probably had no mutual friends. Two blokes having dinner, sharing spag bol & red wine, I thought: what’s the harm in that?

So I turned up & was given a glass; I sat & watched TV while my host drained the spag etc. Soon, we were sharing the meal. I started to feel very strange, woozy. This was embarrassing, I thought I usually didn’t get drunk this quickly. It became pronounced & I struggled to my feet, mumbling that I felt unwell & should be heading home. My host tried to suggest that I sleep it off at his house. Even in my wobbly state, I noticed that he kept out of arm’s length as I made my way through his front door; I wondered why he should behave as if he did not trust me.

I stumbled & lurched to the nearest rail station & found myself in a predicament. I was increasingly unable to move purposefully. Should I sleep on the platform bench? The station attendant was also concerned that I might fall under the train at some point in my journey. Anyway, I persisted & got home eventually.

Years later, I decided that my dinner host had probably infused the claret with a sleeping pill. The phenomenon of “date rape” was not yet well known. Yesterday’s news contained an item where the US drug admin board has recently recommended that the Stillnox (sleeping pill) dosage for women be half that of men. I would not be bragging to assert that I am large bodied & probably had no trouble assimilating the amount of sleeping pill.

Currently, we read the accounts of a series of women who say that they were drugged and sexually molested by Cosby; one might ask why none of them were able to present themselves for medical examination soon afterwards, to have a sample of sperm taken or their blood for testing. Having found myself reaching such an intolerant conclusion, one needs to step back, to realise what other factors were involved in the situation. Even the attempt on me provoked feelings, years later, of betrayal. Actual assault would have been traumatic. Also, the drug dosage, and its effect would have been completely different.

All in all, tho, a nasty business.

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About anton veenstra

tapestry weaver, fibre artist, gay/qr activist, multiculturalist
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