Pointing at the Autism

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Great thoughts. I am always interested in learning more about Autism to help me further understand what my step-son goes through.

Autism and expectations

I can’t always tell which bits of me are a result of being autistic, and which bits would have been there anyway. It may not be helpful to know one way or another.

I share as many personality characteristics with other autistic people, as I do with other brown eyed people.

What we do have in common are some experiences, some ways of seeing social interaction, some loves and hates of sensory input.

What we don’t have in common, is a sense of humour, a dress sense, an accent. Because autistic people are just people like everyone else.

Autism is something that can isolate us. It can lead to difficulties in dealing with social situations. It can lead to sensory overload.

Just like I don’t understand the more common negative reaction to certain stimuli – I can happily scrape my nails down a chalkboard, or rub a balloon and make…

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Everything is beautiful

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(Photo: Warner Bros. Pictures)

(Photo: Warner Bros. Pictures)

“Every day I feel is a blessing from God. And I consider it a new beginning. Yeah, everything is beautiful.” – Prince

Yesterday an icon passed away. 57 years young. A shock to the world. A shame to say the least and a sad realization that even demigods are mortal.
I enjoyed listening to Prince. I found his music entertaining and provocative. His album Purple Rain came out in 1984, when I was just 13. Wow…”Darling Nikki”…hmmm…. not to mention “Let’s Go Crazy” as well as “Purple Rain.” Such powerful songs. Such strong memories.
He was a poet to be sure. As well as a musician and a story-teller. All that wrapped up in an entertainer that was sexual and mysterious. When I knew Prince, MTV still played music videos. The Revolution were added sex appeal to his videos. We waited to watch him and record his videos on VHS.
My family took a trip to Minneapolis around 1985. Prince was on top of the world at this time. My mother bought his cassette tape while we were there. We listened to it over and over again on the way home. Just like now, we can not get enough of his music.
More hits came along (although to me they did not arrive in chronological order). “1999” was a party anthem. “Little Red Corvette” was iconic. “Raspberry Beret” was just fun to me. “Sign O The Time” signaled a change in him to me.
He changed his name to a symbol…which I thought was very strange. He lived in Minneapolis…which I thought was cool. He was Purple…which I enjoy.
I know very little of this man. What I know today mostly I learned yesterday or today. He was reclusive. He was religious, although not in a traditional way. He was sincere and honest. He did not do drugs. He did not like technology and the internet. Honestly, I just learned his real name is Prince Rogers Nelson.
He has no real bearing on my life. He was not a friend or acquaintance. I have never met him. He did not participate in my day-to-day life. I have not followed his music career since the early 90’s.
However, maybe he did have a bearing. His music will forever ring strong in my mind. When I hear his songs, I will remember moments that I have experienced. I will remember the Minneapolis trip with my family. I will remember the fraternity house where I first got his Pearl album on CD. I will remember celebrating the 1999 new year.
Yesterday we lost a musician. We lost an entertainer. We lost a person who was just like everyone else. Someone who lived and loved. He had dreams and hopes. He had beliefs.
Today he experienced a new beginning and received a blessing from God.
Yeah, everything is beautiful!

Leather and Ozone

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Reader’s Digest asked it’s readers to finish the following question

“The smell of my childhood is…”

Leather and ozone.

Growing up, I lived near a store named Haggerty’s Department Store in Rapid City. Haggerty’s was a local department store that carried clothing, jewelry, cosmetics, home goods, and musical instruments in the back. The also carried shoes.

I loved going into this store. The air smelled of fresh leather. It was stronger as you entered near the back entrance, but it was noticeable either way. It was a crisp scent, mixed with the air conditioned air. It was overwhelming initially, and eventually acclimated to a pleasing aroma that followed you out the door as you left.

I loved going into this store. The music department was a fun and interesting place to wander around in and touch. I couldn’t play the instruments, but they were shiny and wonderful. They smelled of leather.

I loved going into this store. The boy’s department eventually turned into the men’s department. We couldn’t afford the clothes in this store, but occasionally something special would come. I recall buying a belt in this store. It smelled of leather.

I loved going into this store. The ladies department was boring and uninviting to a young boy, but my grandma loved the clothes here. She couldn’t afford this store either, but she would happily spend time browsing through the racks. They smelled like leather.

I loved going into this store. My best friend Vic shopped here often. He would stop in and pick up random clothes as he needed them. I remember his buying a pair of shoes here once. They smelled of leather.

I loved going into this store. It was bright and friendly. It has a multitude of items to look at and it was inviting. I loved the fact that it had a front and back door. It always smelled of leather.

I have never smelled the same combination of leather and ozone since. The store is closed now. A grocery store now occupies the building that it was in. Unfortunately, it no longer smells of leather.

Prompts

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I bought a book the other day. It is titled Q&A a day. It’s a journal that holds 365 questions that you are expected to answer. It’s designed to help me come up with topics to blog about.

I have had it for a couple of days…and still have not used it…

That changes today! ♥