Back in the 70's I was a disconnected kid. I simply did not fit in with many of my school peers. Inevitably I was teased and picked on. It was the era of Bazza McKenzie, the Australian "hero" in London, who would "point Percy at the porcelain" when he went to the toilet. Some prick of a kid (note the language still) decided to christen me "Percy." It was joyfully accepted by my harsh little peers and caused me much pain.
Calling a kid a penis was a great way to humiliate him and celebrate his disconnectedness. For that's what they were doing. I was different and not allowed to forget it. There was a Bishop's son in my class. He was not to forget either; they called him "Vicar."
The kids were right about me. I was profoundly disconnected. Alone and separate, I struggled to see any meaning in life. I was repelled by the 'ockerism' of 70's Australian male-dom. I was too smart to buy into the get a wife and kids and house consumerism of the time. This sensitive, lonely boy wished sometimes he could have been a girl. At least some of them could have been friends... or so it seemed.
There is a rich irony in all of this. Let me quote from a conversation between Bert Hoff and Terrance Real. You can find the full article here. Terry real has a great summary of the Perceval myth, which is
sort of the earth story of Western civilization...
He sees the knight. His mother literally drops dead on the spot. He goes off on his adventures. He slays the dragon, wins the Grail, then wins the Princess. That's the way it goes. First our turn your back on relational connection, separate from your mother, I think way too unnecessarily early. Then you go off and conquer. You are into dominion, not cooperation with, power over. Then when you've proven that your muscles are big enough and you're strong enough to be really worthy, then guess what you get? You get the relational qualities you turned your back on as a boy. That's the dream. But it doesn't work like that.
They called the disconnected kid who was searching for some kind of connection after Perceval. And ockerism, which could only find a kind of connection through sex, called the male member Percy. How weird is that? Myth is True.
In his article Terry Real suggests men's real problem is wanting to be loved and connected. We want to belong and to be approved of. It is true. Whenever I have belonged and felt OK about me I have been energized and happy and fulfilled. When I have not belonged, I have been lonely, unsettled, searching and even ill. I thing may be the Dragon for me has been to understand I can accept myself for who I am. And perhaps I am courting the princess as I slowly learn to make friends.
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