Being a visual person, I’ve started thinking of this Time’s up/ # me too movement’s target as a particular shape. I see Humpty Dumpty, that big ego egg, no longer able to wield his power over the female populace, not even with the help of his soldiers and footmen.
Of course, the real Humpty Dumpty wasn’t an egg at all, but a cannon that fell off a church tower in Colchester England in 1648. Interestingly the phallic shape of the cannon and its fall is more suitable as an expression for this revolution, but I still like the egg. In Lewis Carroll’s Through the Looking Glass, Alice asks this rotund fellow if he’s concerned about falling and whether he might not be better on the ground with the rest of the world.
He responds: 'Of course I don't think so! Why, if ever I did fall off — which there's no chance of — but if I did —' Here he pursed up his lips, and looked so solemn and grand that Alice could hardly help laughing. 'If I did fall,' he went on, 'the King has promised me —
Well, now we hope the King will have great trouble getting the Dumpty back on his perch and that the egg –O will never again rise to the position of public offender of the feminine. Not exactly Carroll, but after all, art is all about interpretation.
I’ve responded before on these pages to #me too and have a much more intimate and first- hand knowledge of abuse that I hold close to my chest. Perhaps that will appear in a later book. But I’m completely with the movement and continued to be shocked everyday by each new arrival to the infamous hall of Abuser Fame.
I read Catherine Deneuve’s take on Time’s Up and heard strains of Gerard Depardieu’s argument that women need to be reined in (that’s putting it politely) … I don’t imagine that’s what Ms. Deneuve intended at all…I think as a European, perhaps, there is more playfulness in the culture that enjoys Gallic flirting and that’s a good thing …if it’s consensual and respectful. I recall being on the tram at Orly moving from one part of the airport to the next. Passing on the left was a very tall African athlete with his entourage travelling in the other direction. As if I were a passing tree, he reached down and grabbed my breast like it was an apple he felt like honking, if not picking. I was shocked…and that perhaps is the point…renders one powerless to respond…not at all consensual flirting.
Still, like all things, I think it’s good to keep one’s sense of humor close. With this in mind, I unearthed an old song I had written and recorded and decided to make it a little video anthem for #me too. The song, The Right Kind of Guy (goo.gl/QsKDiY), is a lyrical take on one woman’s attempt to find true love. It is far from serious and with a calypso beat, I hoped it might be amusing.
In the lyric, the singer arrives in St. Barth’s (of the 70’s) and hopes to find among the pirates, a new boyfriend. Instead, she runs into an adorable guy who is also looking for The Right Kind of Guy and they duet the chorus together.
For a visual, I used James Dean as he appears in the lyric and then thought why not James Franco? He’s cute, pirate like and has appeal. So in he went.
Only yesterday, did I see the Twitter reaction to his winning the Golden Globe, especially on an evening devoted to Time’s Up. Apparently, my little pirate, too, is being accused of rotten behavior with fellow actors and such. He denied it on the Stephen Colbert show…but his accusers are adamant.
As for my song, I think it still works having Mr. Franco show up on Gustavia’s shore. He may or may not be The Right Kind of Guy… but everyone can change if they try, and with the support of the opening that #me too and Time’s Up are providing, Humpty may never go back up on the wall. Still, I trust and believe that the pieces can be put back together…for both the women and men abused and those people willing to face their misdeeds and begin their own change.