Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Nathan, My Guardian Angel

Quint said he would come with me, but as it happened the only appointment I could get was when he was out of town. It couldn't wait until he got back.

I drove alone and with the radio off, as I usually do when I'm trying to follow driving directions. It was sunny and hot. I was uncharacteristically on time.

As I turned on to Fannin Street, my empty stomach dropped. I reached for my cell and dialed Quint. No answer.

There were about 20 or 30 of them. Some held picket signs and chanted, fists in the air. A small faction stood stoically, red tape over their mouths. And then there were the people holding the five-foot billboard photos of bloody fetuses.

I decided to park in the overflow parking lot around the corner. I turned the ignition off and sat, trying to gather myself. I started to suffocate. I turned the ignition back on to get some air. I flipped open the cell phone again -- Quint's voicemail.

Just then two men approached my car. I instinctively reached for the door lock -- but of course I had already locked it when I first saw the protesters. When the men got close enough for my poor eyesight to focus I realized they were wearing Planned Parenthood T-shirts.

I got out of the car. The older man smiled and introduced me to the younger one, Nathan. He was a tall white guy with wrinkled khakis and hair that was shaggy (not from Brit-rock coolness but from a defiance of neatness).

"I'll escort you inside the clinic," Nathan said. I wanted to hug this mess of a boy.

As we rounded the corner, one of the protesters approached me with some literature. I cut off his spiel with a polite "no thank you." He stepped closer and began ranting with heightened volume. Nathan pulled me along. Either the distance we put between us and him or the policeman's ready stance finally quieted the diatribe.

Nathan offered nervous smiles as we passed the long line of protesters. They stared me down in silence during my final steps to the clinic entrance. Nathan held the door open for me. I paused and looked back over my shoulder.

I just need to get my fu*king Pill! Can I live?


Blogger piu piu said...

i've never seen that kind of shit in the uk

August 17, 2005 2:13 PM  
Blogger Puerto Rican Angel said...

Damn!! that had to be rough. I'm all for people's opinions especially when we don't share the same views, but I hate those people that try to force their's on you. Lets just agree to disagree

August 17, 2005 2:15 PM  
Blogger FreakinRican said...

Alright I can't stand those "holier than thou" protesters but I thought it was hilarious that they were prosteting your right to get the pill.

August 17, 2005 3:32 PM  
Anonymous kristine said...

The thing that pisses me off the most about these sort of protesters is that they stand outside of PP, discouraging women from going inside to get services that will help PREVENT those same women from having to go inside and get the services the protesters want to ban. Doesn't that seem illogical, even to someone who would picket a PP?

August 17, 2005 5:20 PM  
Blogger The Ticked Off Ohioan said...

Tell that clinic to start a protester pledge drive where a bunch of people give money based on the number of protesters outside the clinc. Make sure that the clinic displays a huge sign thanking the protesters for the amount of money they helped raise. Fucking assholes.

August 17, 2005 9:13 PM  
Blogger Tanisha said...

girl i had a blog i wanted to put up and you just gave me the courage to do it. not to mention i was going to write something similar. don't them fools get on yout nerves. i am getting a fucking pap smear not an abortion fool. unless of course you want to pay for a pap smear somewhere else. Then get the fuck outta my face. i hate them.. anyhoo off the soap box again

August 17, 2005 9:51 PM  
Blogger Tanisha said...

ps. thanks for putting me up as a link girl. i like your blog too..hehehe snort..

August 17, 2005 9:52 PM  
Blogger shell said...

This moment reminds me of the picture where the first African-American female student was escorted to her classroom by an armed soldier while the crowd jeered in the background.

I'm tempted to use Rodney King's famous words - "Can't we just all get along?"

August 17, 2005 11:07 PM  
Blogger S.C. said...

Fanatics like that freak me out.

I mean, I respect the art of protest, and think it's a very valuable political tool...but most people who protest don't understand what they're doing. They don't see it as making a statement, trying to change minds, or anything like that. It's just a legal way for them to threaten people.

August 18, 2005 6:57 AM  
Blogger Chai said...

good for you for not turning around and running away. i'm proud of the fact that you still parked, went inside, and didn't have a melt down.

in dc, we have huge barricades around the PP in downtown. we also, like ticked off in ohio said, have a HUGE banner thanking people for their support and love.

August 18, 2005 7:03 AM  
Blogger sJea said...

i tell you...had there been protesters outside of a clinic in north carolina about ten summers ago...i would probably have a nine year old and i would NOT be happy about it...this kind of decision is hard enough without those kinds of assholes projecting their beliefs onto your life...fuck em...i've gotten VERY good at saying that lately...

August 18, 2005 10:59 AM  
Blogger AnonymousCoworker said...

My friend used to be "Nathan" at another clinic in Virginia. He was walking a young woman into the clinic when a protestor grabbed his arm and started calling him a sinner. He asked the guy to remove his arm twice before he called the cops over.

The cops flattened the protestor and charged him with assault.

August 18, 2005 11:19 AM  
Blogger Croaker said...

Those people do more harm to their cause then good. Why don't they do something construcrive with their time like open a free clinic.

August 19, 2005 2:51 PM  
Blogger TechnoBabe said...

you are brave! I hate people like them..

August 23, 2005 10:11 PM  

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