As a bit of background for this post there is a movie called Gaslight. For you film buffs, this is a 1944 Ingrid Bergman film where Charles Boyer, who by the way, is French, which explains a lot, tries to convince his wife (Bergman) that she is insane by taking things from the house and saying she stole them. He plans on convincing her that she’s insane, getting her committed, and then looting her stuffs.
Mary has the weirdest hole in her recollections. She can remember a movie from the Thirties or Forties that she’s seen, sometimes line for line, but more recent movies often enter some sort of black hole of memory.
As evidence, a recent breakfast conversation.
Mary, “Hey, the King’s Speech is going to be on TV tonight!”
Me, “ Umm, well, it was pretty good, not sure if I want to see it again.”
Mary, “OK, but I want to see it, I’ve heard it’s very good.”
Me, “Yes, it was very good, but you’ve already seen it.”
Mary, “No, I think I would remember that.”
Me, “We saw it together, last year.”
Mary, “I have no memory of that, if I saw this movie, what happened in it?”
Me, “Young man gets browbeat by his dad, who is the king, because he stutters. King dies, brother gets the throne. He starts having an affair with American divorcee. He has to abdicate, so stutterer gets the throne. He has to give a speech on the radio, but he can’t because he stutters, so he hires a tutor to give him lessons to teach him not to stutter. He gives the speech, England goes to war, the end.”
Mary, “I did not watch that movie!”
Me, frustrated, “Yes, you did, right here, on the couch, on Pay Per View. On a Friday night. You had cheesy popcorn. I had pretzels.”
Mary, “You’re just making that up.”
Me, “For God’s sake, why would I make it up?!?”
Mary, “Because you’re trying to Gaslight me. You want me to think I’m going insane, so you can commit me to an asylum, and then run off to Rio with all the jewelry!”
Me, “First, all your jewelry together is probably worth $400 dollars. Second, why would I want to run off to Rio – I don’t speak Portuguese! Third, why is it you can remember the plot of a film made almost seventy years ago, but you can’t even remember seeing a movie less than a year ago?”
Mary, “I still think you’re making this all up and I’m going to watch the King’s Speech tonight, with or without you!”
I’ve just figured this out! I’m the one who’s getting Gaslighted!