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Showing posts from September, 2014

Everyone has a kettle! Aspie declarations in conversation.

With a flourish, the aspie rounds off the argument with,

'And anyway, everyone has a kettle!'

This may sound like the very end of a deconstructive monologue on modern consumerism, or it may sound too random even for that. In fact, many arguments with an aspie start and end with a Declaration.

Aspies are very focused people. To survive in the modern world, with no handbook, we need to know what things mean. Angry faces mean angry people, raised voices mean shouting, going to work means getting paid.

There is also this logical, slightly rigid outlook when describing objects. If we have a house with big windows, then a house with small windows is totally feasible but our image of a house will have big windows.

This is a very simplistic way of explaining that aspies see things the way they have grown up seeing them and have learnt to see them. Being rigid in the way we visualise certain aspects of life leaves our minds free to tussle with the harder to understand elements, like h…

There's a troll in my bag!

I had one of those moments yesterday: I said what my brain threw out first. This is not the same as blurting any old thing; it's not even the same as saying something inappropriate. It has a special place all of its own in the Embarrassing Conversation stakes. This is also known as Telling the Truth.

I was finishing a lesson and struggling to close my bag before I left a client's house. Instead of just struggling, then leaving and keeping it all as people like it kept, this is how it went:

Client watches as I struggle to close my bag.

'There's a troll in my bag!' I say cheerfully and look up to see a very confused expression.

At this point, my client is probably telling himself I didn't say troll and is trying to think what word I could have said. Faced with this confusion and only vaguely feeling I should stop right there, I dig my hand into my bag and produce a bundled shape.

I brandish a vividly-decorated pillow case, folded into a lump and triumphantly cry…

Interruptions from an aspie

I just need to interrupt you there...

It would be useful if I could insert this phrase in at least half of my conversations, because I really do need to interrupt. I need to stop what you are doing to start a small part of the conversation that most likely has not much to do with the rest. I need to open up a gap you never knew was there and say a few words that popped into my head a nano-second before I said them.

I need to hesitate very rarely, only long enough for you to wonder what I am doing, what I am talking about. My few words, my line, my phrase, my piece of information takes precedence and it doesn't matter what your face does as I step in, it only matters that I say what has to be said.

The interruption is key because my information has a shelf-life of seconds before it is lost forever. Or not lost, but left behind to the point it may as well be lost. I know if I don't speak right now, right in the middle of your turn, that the words will evaporate, leaving only th…

This is Bob, he has Aspergers too...

Every year my step-sister holds a Halloween party. It's a mix of adults and children and I usually go off with the kids and leave the adults to do whatever they do in the kitchen (it involves unexpected laughter, drinks in plastic cups and small pockets of serious conversation).

I love these parties. I get to dress up without being stared at and eat candy. I also get to go to a party where I don't feel like bolting for the door or holing up in the spare toilet. It's so rare for me to enjoy a party that Halloween has become a time of year I now associate with happy social gatherings - that is, as long as I stay with the kids.

This year, someone new is coming. He's the father of one of the children I already know and usually their mother does the honours, dressed as a gloriously gaudy witch. Their mum can't make it so dad is coming instead. I asked if he'd be dressing up.

My step-sister's face changed to an eager expression and she powered through the 'Y…

The Hunt for Organisation

Organisation is running scared. I'll have you know I've taken the best part of a week to track him down and it won't be long now before I find out where he's been hiding and flush him out.

It started at the weekend. I was struggling with my timetable for the new term and it just wouldn't work. That's when I realised Organisation had done a runner.

I looked everywhere but ended up having a sleep on the sofa instead of finding him. I woke up and realised I had found two cats and a dog instead, which is very nice but not very useful and certainly not organised.

I spent a day resting from finding Organisation and then set back to it with renewed gusto. Then I got distracted by someone else's timetable (neatly organised) and by designing a timetable template. I now have a beautiful, empty timetable, waiting for Organisation to do the rest.

The next day I sat myself at the desk and made a plan of action. Organisation was bound to be somewhere close by. The new t…