Nov 19, 2006

In 20 Min.

This is roughly how this conversation went at work:

Coworker: Can you show me how to use the Change Database in 20 min. I have a meeting.
Me: What are you asking for?
Coworker: I'm asking can you show me in 20 min.
Me: It is 12:45. Are you asking me to wait until 01:05 to show you this or are you asking that my demonstration be of less than 20 min. duration?

Show me in 20 min. Can easily mean two things, and the context (I have a meeting) didn't help at all. She could have had a short meeting, and wanted me to wait around until she got out.

So, I told her, "It's the Aspie thing, I didn't understand."

Her response was that it was o.k. She said most people don't understand and just pretend that they do.

Don't I know it.


Nov 9, 2006

Little Tiny Meltdown

Yesterday I was running late for work, but I still wanted coffee. I had the bright idea that I would make a pot of coffee. put some in this small metal thermous that I have, and strap it to the bag holder on the back of my bike. I've done that before.

I couldn't find the thermous. I new if Marge were here she could find it in less than five min. In my case, if it has been moved from its spot I can't always see it. Sometimes, things have been moved from the place were I normally put them, and are now in plain site. Just in a different place. I've been known to look right at something and not recognise it for what it is, because it is not where I expected it to be.

I was frozen, I had so planned on that coffee. I knew it was illogical, but it threw off my whole morning. I even castigated myself with sayings like, "Grow up jr. it's just coffee." That just made me angry.

So, I put the pot of coffee in the fancy caraf that we use (which I can not take on my bike), and pedalled off to work.

Sometimes I hate Asperger.

So, last night I got home from work, and my wife said, thanks for making me the pot of coffee. I explained that I was not so nobel as she thought. She found my metal thermous in under five min.

See, if I were a neurotypical, things couldn't be invisible on me. I could find what I want, when I wanted to. O.K., I know, a bunch of my neurtypicals are patronizingly saying, "Oh, we all loose things once in a while."

I hate it when people do that. In fact, I've heard it so much, I can hear it when they aren't saying it.

O.K. This post is nothing but an Aspie rant.

And I'm running late for work.



Nov 1, 2006

Surrounded by Smart Neurotypicals - Now What?

I agreed to be part of the Kalamazoo Public Library's "Read Together Program" in which everyone read the same book and talks about it, does art about it, etc. It might sound a bit odd at first glance, but it is a cool way to get people engaged in thinking through what they read instead of just reading. There is real value in working through the aspects of a books style and writing and its content.

Well, the book is called, "The Mysterious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time." It's about a boy with high functioning autism. I'm on the group because I'm in the ASD spectrum.

Well, I never felt so ASD in all my life. Normally I'm in groups of IT folks, engineers, Quality Assurance weenies, scientists. Instead I'm surrounded by library staff, educators, museum employees, book lovers, and advocates for the disabled. I introduced myself as being in the spectrum and having had fallen into some public speaking.

I worked hard at understanding the body language around me, but I couldn't. I assumed the worst. I'm just some idiot, what am I doing here with the educated elite? So, I tried to keep quiet, but just couldn't. Oddly enough, my ideas were well received, and afterward I was thanked. Also, some one said that they were changing some of their ideas based on one of my comments.

I know full well, that tonight I experienced, like never before, what the books call "mind blindness". I hated it. All of the methods I normally have for guessing or extrapolating what people might be thinking failed me in the rarefied air of the library environment.

I'm really intimidated. I love the arts, academia, and especially libraries.

Now , you might be thinking, this is a public blog, this is all out in the open now. Very true, but I'm committing to keeping a certain level of transparency, so that there is some incite into the Aspie mind. When a new group of people is also a new type of people, it is very un-nerving for an Aspie. I had the urge to leave, to say smart-alek comments, or just to rock back and forth. I did a little rocking when I got home. I repress it so much, but it really does feel nice.

There is really nothing that group of people could have done any better. I was made to feel welcomed, and my comments were welcomed. It will simply take me time to get used to them. In the meantime, I control my urges and filter my comments. In no time I'll fit right in.

I'm stepping so far out of my comfort zone, but i was telling my wife, this is what I'm all about. Helping people. This is it. God has given me Asperger, I want to use it to help others and in so doing bring the Lord pleasure.