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Thursday, July 19, 2007

Powers of invisibility













Back in the days when I was a student, I would often leave my contacts lenses out and live the day in a myopic blur. Sometimes this was due to vanity. Other times it was because I preferred the challenge of recognizing people by their colour fuzziness. I was always surprised at how accurate my people recognition was without, the benefit of a good view or prior to voice confirmation. It was a combination of different factors such as general shape, pattern of movement or gestures that no doubt assisted me.


Just after ten I feel ruthless. I throw out three pairs of malfunctioning kitchen scissors. [translation = it is audacious to call yourself a pair of scissors if you cannot cut anything] I nip out into the garden on an errand of mercy to make up for the crime of rampant wastage. The air heaves with heat. [translation = malfunctioning sprinkler system] I attempt to give the kiss of life to my crispy garden clutching a hosepipe, whilst I contemplate the meaning of life, the universe and everything. [translation = double therapy]

It is more difficult than I thought to water the garden in the dark. [translation = trip over the cat and land in the rose bed without a thornless variety in sight, even if there were some light with which to see] All I can hear is the rush of the water and the singing of the crickets. [translation = children abed and asleep] I wonder how many more deaths there will be in the family? [translation = Hermit crabs] I pick thorns out of my legs in the dark by touch and try to remember when I last had a Tenanus jab. [translation = shot]

I return via the garage to grab a pair of pliers. I attack all the pokey bits on my braces that have lacerated my mouth. [translation = maybe I’m an engineering type afterall! Or a budding dentist?] As I tweak the last little needle point braces wire into place, all the lights go out in the house. I stand in the kitchen with a pair of pliers attached to my teeth wondering if I will have to remain in place until daylight. [translation = something expensive might snap something off]

Spouse comes to the rescue. [translation = goes outside and untrips the trippy thing]
I know that I am being punished. I know why I’m being punished. I am being punished for teasing an autistic child this morning.
This morning…………………

I stand at the kitchen counter fiddling with the lap top. [translation – paying bills] He emerges from the family room into the small narrow kitchen, calling my name. [translation = probably in need of assistance] I pause just too long, awaiting the confirmation receipt, motionless. He continues to call my name and walks past my back. My head flicks round to watch his back disappear. My fingers drift from the keys and all of me follows my son at a discrete distance. [translation = I can’t help myself, even though it is a mean trick] I follow in his wave as he calls and searches. I still find it hard after all this time, to fully appreciate his perception. [translation = because I am an outsider looking at the outside] He is familiar with my form. I am not wearing brown, which might make me blend in with my surroundings like a Chameleon. The kitchen is very narrow, so narrow that as often as not he will travel the 10 foot corridor like a ball, bouncing off each surface in turn.

After a few minutes I give up and reply, “here I am dear.”
Because I am still behind him he startles, a couple of micro-moments after I have spoken. Seconds pass before he snaps his body around to face me, the source of the disembodied voice. His huge eyes focus on my five foot six form [translation = adult to child ratio] and he startles again.
“Der you are! Where you were? You are dah magic?”

I smile. [translation = meany]

I bet the cat’s still laughing at me.

And maybe the "dentist" too!

7 comments:

Rachel said...

Poor child. I shouldn't laugh.
I certainly shouldn't have a fit of the giggles each time I imagine the scene.

farmwifetwo said...

Tsk, Tsk.... :) You would sneak up on a "normal" child... and tease them... you weren't cruel, you didn't push him past his limits... but he didn't melt either.. maybe time for more "teasing"??

S.

Joeymom said...

My kids have a habit, like our cats, of simply materializing either under my feet or behind my back. Maybe they are teasing me? ;) Or is it just in teh nature and magic of children?

burgiboogie said...

My son has a VI, and this scene happens all the time at my house. I can't count how many hapless, and usually pregnant (bad for my ego) women, Cotton has drug around to do his bidding. Only to be shocked to find "the real" me grimacing in front of him.

Jeni said...

Gotta agree with farmwifetwo's perception of your little trick - not mean, just a little teasing there. Trust me when I tell you I can think of two people in this house who are NOT autistic and who can easily walk past someone here and not see them there at all. Just like the one can walk past a day's accumulation of dirty dishes waiting for some kind soul to dig in and wash them up and unless you suggest to her that it would be a nice gesture - as opposed to her laying about on the sofa all day watching the VH1 channel -to do something and you specifically TELL her about them being there, she won't see them otherwise! Maybe that is the teenager's version of vision though at work. What's your theory on that one?

slouching mom said...

You're a funny one. Love the translation asides.

Linda said...

"You are dah magic"! Love it!

Besides which, you weren't teasing an autistic child, you were treating him just like you would a "normal" child and now he thinks you are dah magic and not dah stoopid.

Again, I love it.

 
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