This weekend I attended a workshop at Wordstock in Portland called Radical Disclosure. The workshop was essentially about the ethical and moral dilemma writers often face when writing about experiences that will bring embarrassment to themselves or others. We were asked to write in class for five minutes about a real life experience that caused embarrassment or was otherwise a "skeleton" in our family and if we were willing, to share it with the class. This is what I wrote:
The day I received a "pocket-dialed" phone call from my uncle and overheard a frightful argument between him and my aunt, was the day my respect for him was lost. I was on a trip out of town and missed their call while out of range, so it went straight to voice mail. I played the message. The first thing I heard was my uncle yelling "I told you I don't want anything. I'm not f**king hungry! I am trying to get this f**king stuff done. Why didn't you listen to me. You never f**king listen. If you would have listened you don't listen to a f*cking thing I say. F**K!! YOU JUST...I CAN'T....F*****CK!!!!!!" I heard my aunt in the background "I was only trying..." My uncle sounding like a rendition of Ozzy Ozborne screamed out a final "DAMN ITS THIS IS F*CKING, F****CK!!!!"
The call ended. I was freaked out, and no clue really what I should do. A call from me this late would be odd. I was worried and concerned whether my aunt was in danger. I didn’t believe my uncle was capable of hurting her, but then again, I hadn’t thought he would ever scream like that either. And if I did call, there is a chance they might find out I knew.