The glamorous life-not

Although I’ve hardly become a media icon in my time running INS, it seems that every time an interview appears there’s a little group of anti-choicers who analyze my every word, gesture and facial expression. It’s pretty obvious to me that their fondest wish is to see me crack, to burst into noisy public tears and wail that I’m lying, I AM sorry that I murdered pweshus widdle babies, and that I will give my life to Jeebus and spend the rest of my days on my knees in atonement. Because, you know, all women regret their abortions. Normally I laugh, but sometimes they just go to such ridiculous lengths it pisses me off.

Recently an anti-choice blog wrote an entry about my appearance on The National, the Canadian newsmagazine that did the piece on Silent No More. The blogger (a male, what a surprise) surmised that abortion was painful to me and that I was in total denial. His reasoning? I paused for approximately two seconds when asked if abortion affected women emotionally. I wouldn’t have paused, he sneered, if I was so sure that abortion was no big deal.

I nearly strained an optic nerve with the eyeroll I performed upon reading that.

If I may, let me set the scene of the October evening that the Canadian Broadcasting Company descended upon INS Central:

The CBC crew was covering an SNM rally in Washington and was driving down to Richmond (about a hundred miles away). They wanted to get there around six, but I held them off because the Real Life Job was running late and stressful, and at the very least I wanted a chance to grab something to eat and straighten the house. I got out of work late and tore ass back to my house, only to find one of my cats had gotten copiously sick in the hallway outside my office, so it was out with the cleaning stuff. As luck would have it, the doorbell rang just as I finished running the vacuum (this was about eight p.m.). Once pleasantries were exchanged, the cameraman spent an hour rearranging my office furniture and hanging lights while I made small talk with Deb the producer and the reporter, Susan Orminston. Once everything was lit to the cameraman’s satisfaction, we trooped in and got miked up, and the interview began. This brought out the cameraman’s inner Fellini, and for the next two hours this is what I heard:

“Patricia, could you turn a little to the left?”
“Could you type more slowly?”
“Could you scroll down on the screen maybe a half an inch? No, not that far, up a bit. Now down just a bit …”
“Can I move this light?”

The most annoying part was that he would do this just as I was on a roll with an answer, so I had to repeat myself over and over. I’m not the most patient person in the world under the best of circumstances. Throw in the fact that I’d been up since five-thirty (it was now after ten), had a crappy day at work, had nothing to eat since lunch around eleven o’clock, had had to do speed cleaning, and had strangers in my house that I had to be nice to despite the fact that all I wanted to do was eat a sandwich, curl up with a cat and watch the World Series, and it was teeth gritting time. To add to the joy, I was PMSing and retaining more water than the Hoover Dam. Having to sit across from the perfectly groomed Susan while knowing that I looked like complete crap didn’t help either.

So the Fateful Pause occurred because that was the fourth time Susan had asked me the damn question thanks to Fellini Wannabe and I was losing what little patience I had left. Sorry to disappoint you, anti-choice blogger. My wish is that one day you be interviewed under the same circumstances, so I may blog about how you’re secretly pro-choice because you paused for two seconds when the interviewer asked if you really believed abortion was wrong.

That is, if you ever do anything interesting enough.