And I watched in horror as my longtime friend and fellow model Janice dickinson was raked over the coals for telling her account of rape at Cosbys hands. Over the years ive met other women who also claim to have been violated by cosby. Many are still afraid to speak. I couldnt sit back and watch the other women be vilified and shamed for something i knew was true. When I sat down to write my memoir in 2013, i pondered if I should include my cosby experience. I didn't want to get involved in a he-said/she-said situation. Now that other women have come forward with their nightmare stories, i join them. Finally, i reached the conclusion that the current attack on African American men has absolutely nothing to do at all with Bill Cosby.
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I had a career that would no doubt take a huge hit if I went public with my story and I certainly couldnt afford that after my costly divorce and on going court fees. For a long time i thought it was something that only happened to me, and that I was somehow responsible. So i kept my secret to myself, believing this truth needed to remain in the darkness. But the last four weeks have changed everything, as so many women have shared similar stories, of rudestam which the press have belatedly taken heed. Still I struggled with how to reveal my big secret, and more importantly, what would people think when and if I did? Would they dismiss me as an angry black woman intent on ruining the image of targets one of the most revered men in the African American community over the last 40 years? Or would they see my open and honest account of being betrayed by one of the countrys most powerful, influential, and beloved entertainers? As I wrestled with the idea of telling my story of the day bill Cosby drugged me with the intention of doing God knows what, the faces of Trayvon Martin, michael Brown, Eric Garner, and countless other brown and black men took residence. As if I needed to be reminded. The current plight of the black male was behind my silence when Barbara bowman came out to tell the horrific details of being drugged and raped by cosby to the. Washington Post in november.
A little shocked, i quickly identified myself to her in the most respectful way possible and then asked to speak to bill. Camille politely informed me that it was very late, 11:00. And that they were both in bed together. I apologized for the late call and explained that I was in Los Angeles and had book forgotten about the three-hour time difference. I added that I would call back tomorrow. I didnt call back the next day or any other day after that. At a certain moment it became clear that I would be fighting a losing battle with a powerful man so callous he not only drugged me, but he also gave me the number to the bedroom he shared with his wife. How could I fight someone that boldly arrogant and out of touch? In the end, just like the other women, i had too much to lose to go after Bill Cosby.
Had I done something to encourage his actions? In reality, i knew Id done nothing to encourage cosby but my mind kept turning with question after question. It took a few days for the drug to completely wear off and soon I had to get back to work. I headed to california for an acting audition. Not long after arriving, i decided I needed to confront Cosby for my own sanitys sake. I thought if I just called him, he would come clean and explain why hed done what he had. I dialed the private number hed given me expecting to hear his voice on the other end. But he didnt answer.
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At one point he dropped his hands from my waist and just stood there looking at me like id lost my mind. What happened next is somewhat cloudy for me because the drug was learning in fuller play by that time. I recall his seething anger at my tirade and then him grabbing me by my left arm hard and yanking all 110 pounds of me down a bunch of stairs as my high heels clicked and clacked on every step. I feared my neck was going to break with the force he was using to pull me down those stairs. It was still late afternoon and the sun hadnt completely gone down yet. When we reached the front door, he pulled me outside of the brownstone and then, with his hand still tightly clenched around my arm, stood in the middle of the street waving down taxis. When one stopped, summary cosby opened the door, shoved me into it and slammed the door behind me without ever saying a word.
I somehow managed to tell the driver my address and before blacking out, i looked at the cabbie and asked, as if he knew: Did I really just call Bill Cosby a motherfucker? Why that was even a concern of mine after what Id just been through is still a mystery to me? I think my mind refused to process. The next day i woke up in my own bed after falling into a deep sleep that lasted most of the day. I had no memory of how I got into my apartment or into my bed, though most likely my doorman helped me out. I sat in there still stunned by what happened the night before, confused and devastated by the idea that someone i admired so much had tried to take advantage of me, and used drugs to.
Id had my fun and experimented with my fair share of mood enhancers. I knew by the second sip of the drink cosby had given me that Id been drugged—and drugged good. Editors Note: Cosbys attorneys did not respond. Vanity fairs requests for comment. Bill Cosby in 1978., by david cooper/Toronto Star.
My head became woozy, my speech became slurred, and the room began to spin nonstop. Cosby motioned for me to come over to him as though we were really about to act out the scene. He put his hands around my waist, and I managed to put my hand on his shoulder in order to steady myself. As I felt my body go completely limp, my brain switched into automatic-survival mode. That meant making sure cosby understood that i knew exactly what was happening at that very moment. You are a motherfucker arent you? Thats the exact question i yelled at him as he stood there holding me, expecting me to bend to his will. I rapidly called him several more motherfuckers. By the fifth, i could tell that I was really pissing him off.
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Probably never, but I went with.). As I readied myself to be the best drunk i could be, he offered me a cappuccino from the espresso machine. I told him I didnt drink coffee that late in the afternoon because it made getting to sleep at night more difficult. He wouldnt let. He insisted that his espresso machine was the best model on the market and promised Id never tasted a cappuccino quite like this one. Its nuts, i know, but it felt oddly inappropriate arguing with Bill Cosby so i took a few sips of the coffee just to appease him. Now let me explain this: I was a top model during the 70s, apple a period when drugs flowed at parties and photo shoots like bottled water at a health spa.
It worked like a charm. Cosby suggested I come back to his house a few days later to read for the part. I agreed, and one late afternoon the following week i returned. His staff served a light dinner and Bill and I talked more about my plans for the future. After the meal, we walked upstairs to a huge living area of his home that featured report a massive bar. A huge brass espresso contraption took up half the counter. At the time, it seemed rare for someone to have such a machine in his home for personal use. Cosby said he wanted to see how I handled various scenes, so he suggested that I pretend to be drunk. (When did a pregnant woman ever appear drunk.
daughter at the time, and i usually spent my weekends with her. Cosby suggested I bring her along, which really reeled. He was the jell-o pudding man; like most kids, my daughter loved him. When my daughter and i visited Cosbys New York brownstone, his staff served us a delicious brunch. Then he gave us a tour of the exceptional multi-level home. Looking back, that first invite from Cosby to his home seems like part of a perfectly laid out plan, a way to make me feel secure with him at all times.
I needed a big break badly and appearing. The cosby Show seemed like an excellent way of getting Hollywoods attention. Id appeared in one or two movies already, but my phone wasnt exactly ringing off the hook with acting jobs. Cosbys handlers invited me to a taping of the show so i could get the lay of the land and an idea of what about my role required. After the taping I met all the cast and then met with Cosby in his office to talk a bit about the hell Id been through in my marriage. He appeared concerned and then asked what I wanted from my career going forward. He seemed genuinely interested in guiding me to the next level.
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Like most Americans, i spent the 60s, 70s, and part writings of the 80s in awe of Bill Cosby and his total domination of popular culture. He was the first African American to star in a dramatic television series, i spy, a show my family in Buffalo, new York, always watched. Cosby cut a striking figure on-screen then. He was funny, smart, and even elegant—all those wonderful things many white Americans didnt associate with people of color. In fact, as I thought of going public with what follows, a voice in my head kept whispering, Black men have enough enemies out there already, they certainly dont need someone like you, an African American with a familiar face and a famous name, fanning. Imagine my joy in the mid-80s when an agent called to say bill Cosby wanted me to audition for a role on the. Cosby played an obstetrician, and he sometimes used models to portray pregnant women sitting in his office waiting room. It was a small part with one or two speaking lines at most, but I wanted. I was in the midst of an ugly custody battle for my only child.