Thursday, February 11, 2010

fake priests and scab pickers

So, am I really the only one who thought Father Mulcahy was sexier than Hawkeye Pierce?

If you don’t know what I’m talking about, shame on you. Go Netflix you up a bunch of M*A*S*H and get to watching. Especially that one where Hawkeye and Hotlips are alone in a camp tent while the unit is under attack, and the pair, who usually spar like teenage sisters, wind up….KISSING?

Oooh, sexay. At least it was for me when I was a young lass. TINGLY!


So, that leads me to a question: how old were you when you figured out you really really wanted the attention of someone else in a boyfriend/girlfriend kind of way (or…boyfriend/boyfreind or girlfriend/girlfriend, if that’s your heart’s desire). I was about 11, I think. Fifth grade. Oh, I did have a little boyfriend in first grade (Hi Bruce Mueller) who would kiss me on the sly once in a while and we’d play in the hallways while our older brothers were in Cub Scout Pack meetings, but that was all very innocent. I think. It was on MY part, you can be sure.

It had to have been my last year in New York that I started realizing that some boys made me feel funny inside. Like, the thought of them touching me, or looking at me, or talking to me, made me all nervous. Yes, I had self-esteem issues even THEN, which did no stop my active fantasy life, oh noes.

By sixth grade I was in full-blown adolescence, and Philip Grifano was the object of my affection. Feathered hair, bell bottoms, PLATFORM SHOES, and he played guitar in a 3-piece ‘rock’ band that know one song. That’s right: Smoke on the Water. Oh, Phillip - a slightly zit-faced good-smelling arbiter of savoir faire! I would sit across the table from him in class, sneaking looks, and once or twice I caught him sneaking looks back, so that was the end of that, because as much as I wanted him to notice me, I was not at all sure what to do if I really captured his attention.

Smooth, I wasn’t. Never have been, to be quite honest. Sometimes painfully so.

Which is why the news that the American Psychiatric Association’s proposal to lump Asperger’s syndrome back in with general autism spectrum disorders is of some interest to me. See, I highly suspect that I am an Asperger’s person, or that I HAVE it, or whatever it is that defines some one who is intelligent (not bragging, just true), socially awkward, and highly focused on repetitive behavior or interests (knee bobbing and Bejeweled Blitz, anyone?). Wonder if a lack of self-discipline is a hallmark of Asperger’s Syndrome. If so, place a check in that box too.

Anyway, those folks who are diagnosed with AS do NOT, by and large, want to be identified as someone with an ‘autism spectrum disorder,’ claiming that AS has a very different effect on people’s perception of them, that AS is very different from autism even in its mildest form, etc etc. They have a point – AS is almost a sexy thing, like that quirky scab-picker in study hall with the smart mouth and the sideways glance that lets a person know she knows ‘stuff,’ while autism is much more like the brilliant yet poorly-dressed kid with unfortunate glasses who shuffles cards incessantly as talks to his shoes. It seems that Asperger’s and autism are like that. One you’d hit, the other you’d mock. Or something.

The diagnostic points of AS make a lot of sense to me: repetitive patterns of behavior and interests. There is relative preservation of linguistic and cognitive development. Although not required for diagnosis, physical clumsiness and atypical use of language are frequently reported.

Oh dear. Hitting close to home, that one. Add in hated of overhead lighting, love of quietness, and a deep abiding romance with sleep, and I’m your poster child, baby!


I’m off to pick some scabs and see if that Spybot’s done running on my nearly ICU-worthy computer. Wacky life, I has it. Y’all have a tolerable afternoon.

No comments: