Saturday, May 31, 2008

Square Talk: Cutting Corners


  1. "I'm a hexagon, not a deformed circle!"


  2. Only in a discussion of autism... XD

  3. Those poor little trapped squares. I feel so sorry for them. Pass me a donation form!
    Why do I feel sorry for them? Well, if you're not a circle, you're not truly a shape. Not in any meaningful sense.
    What did you say? Just because I have three sides and three corners, it doesn't make me a triangle.I'm perfectly round. How dare you!

  4. Are you sure that's a TRUE square, and not an imposter?

    Those which are not TRUE squares do not deserve our help.

  5. These comments are highly inappropriate!

  6. Aspieboy,

    I have heard about thoseimpostersbefore. Barely rectangular, some of them...

  7. Off topic...sort of.,8599,1809403,00.html
    How My Son Spread the Measles - TIME

    Measles is back. It now strikes white, upperclass children. Those who believe it cannot happen here are unaware that Europe always has pockets of measles because eastern European countries are poorer and health care is less available. A third world disease is a plane ride away!

    The hardcopy of Time that just came out has a cover story about the danger of parents who are not vaxxing to the rest of the population.

    I predict the legitimate healthcare community and the Federal Government is about to strike back....hard....against the anti vaxxers.

    There is some interesting legislation coming in a few states to begin enforcement of vaccination.

    IMO, our government will not tolerate third world disease to reappear because of Jenny McCarthy and other 'bastions of great scholarship' frantically and emotionally clouding the air waves.


  8. Hmmm. Thanks for the link (I searched the title on the Time site to get to the story). I find it very interesting that the parent in question seemed reasonable about her choices for *her* kid, but seemed to have absolutely no concern for the other kids her kid infected. Of course, that may be the reporter's spin on the story -- end on a positive note, we're reasonable, my kid's healthy. I also find it interesting that the family's planning trips to "third-world" countries. That's very nice and open-minded and upper-class and all, but geez, I've gotta say I'd be very, very cautious about bringing my young child to any underdeveloped country for a number of reasons. It seems a lot of these folks are caught up in the "choice" trend because it's simply fashionable to do something "progressive" . . .

  9. evonne,

    The point is that you don't have to take your kid to a third-world country for them to catch something. Someone else merely has to travel from another country to the US. In one of the recent cases, that country was Switzerland, which is hardly "third world". And of course, plenty of people travel between states, and that's how such diseases are spread.

    Even if you live in one of the Big Rectangle States, you and your children are being exposed to contagious, dangerous diseases. More here.

  10. Yes, I understand that. But "I also find it interesting that the family's planning trips to 'third-world' countries." I should have emphasized the "also" or started a new paragraph or something. Something to indicate my transition to the more nebulous subject of trends in "choice", or something, not necessarily related to infectious disease, and admittedly a bit didactic and underdeveloped in itself. Thanks for the link.

  11. Awesome.

    I clicked on the new poster link for Univ. talk and it says no link exists. I want to put the poster on my blog but want the link to be right too. Thanks!

  12. Here is a sad post by an ER nurse-she has no dog in the Autism fight-
    ERNursey - An ER Nurse's Blog: Whooping Cough

    The above child died in her hospital and the police did not charge the mother with criminal neglect because it was her right to abstain from vaccination.

    These anti vaxxers look down on modern medicine then end up in the ER when they are too sick to help.

    I predict serious changes in law to protect society as a whole from alt med anti vaxxers. Some states are already drafting legislation. I can hardly wait to see what starts passing the House and Senate.

    Think about it this way: people who get these illnesses are quarantined by the CDC. This means no leaving the house. Period. For any reason. At all. Violation of quarantine is a criminal offense. The government has not had to deal with enforcement of these issues in 40 years but we are talking about a system that had the means to round up people just for being Japanese not but 70 years ago and still explodes bombs underground in the desert. Slow but powerful.

    I think times are a'changing. (sorry, I just found out Bob Dylan is an Aspie too :-)


  13. Marla,

    Thanks for letting me know. They've changed the look of their page at USD a bit, so I needed to replace the link. Clicking the poster should take you to conference information now. To get a copy of the image, use the link below it. Thanks very much for supporting the Hub's presentation at USD.


    I will take this as a request for the next Square Talk to be on vaccination. I agree that the situation has gotten out of hand and must be stopped. People are dying because of the combination of arrogance and ingnorance masquerading as Autism "Awareness" in some circles. Circles? No, I meant...

    Thanks very much for the links.

  14. Your graphics are inspired. Bravo!

  15. This is not a question to start an argument, but a genuine question to get your opinion.

    Why is wanting to treat autism equal to "hate". I realize aspies are highly intelligent people who are pleased with who they are (I am the mother of one). However, aspies are not the only autistic people. You have a voice - many others do not, and I'm sure they'd like one.

    I'm sure you have control over your bathroom habits. I know many who don't. I'm sure they'd like to.

    I'm sure you can sleep at night - all through the night. I know many who can't. I'm sure they're sick of it.

    You can talk, you can type, you communicate very well. I know many who can't. Don't you think they want to?

    So, when I hear you talk about autistics be just fine, I can see your point in reference to you, but you cannot speak for everyone. I know many autistic people who cannot sleep properly, they cannot focus on anything, they cannot speak, they cannot communicate. I can't imagine the frustration they have to be feeling.

    So when people are trying to help, they aren't hating. They don't want to change YOU. YOU can blog, and you can relate. Others (many, many others) can't.

    Why is that hate? I genuinely don't understand. I can't imagine that you are okay with people who don't have those skills. Are we not supposed to help?

  16. Well, Julie, this post doesn't really say anything about "hate," but I just checked out your blog and saw a post about hating AS.

    Yes, of course I want kids to be helped. Please read the "For Parents" post listed under Starting Squares in the sidbar for my views on treating medical and communication issues.

    And please, please, don't presume so much. Half of what you are so sure of is false. I can't remember the last time I slept through the night, or for more than a couple of hours without waking up. If you have a solution for that, I'd love to hear it. Just don't call it "curing" autism. Autism encompasses everything about my functioning, not just the negative stuff.

  17. Thank you 'Julie' for trying to see our side of things instead of leaving a goofus/gallant comment.

    As for the vaccine issue, why would somebody get vaccinated for a rare disease that kills 9-10 a year in the U.S.A.? That's really not much, not worth the mercury poisoning. I think that the whole autism issue is just to distract us from the other vaccine dangers.

  18. Vaccinations make people resistant to disease; they do not make diseases go away. When folks stop vaccinating, the disease becomes less "rare".

  19. I think I'm a triangle . . .

  20. Aspieboy:

    Dear Sir;

    Please be advised that thimerosal was removed from childhood vaccines in 2001.

    Also be aware that MMR, Hib, DTaP, and polio IPV never contained thimerosal nor can they due to the fact that thimerosal was added as a preservative and these vaccines are attenuated or alive and adding preservative would render the active ingredient worthless. Any negative negative effects from MMR are not to do with mercury of any sort.

    Please be advised that people who wish to control the mercury they are exposed to should not consume pelagic fish such as tuna, mahi mahi, salmon, mackeral, or swordfish more than once a week. Please see this from the EPA.

    This means one serving a week. Eating three servings of tuna gives you more mercury (methyl) than any thimerosal (ethyl) containing shot.
    What You Need to Know about Mercury in Fish and Shellfish | Fish Advisories | US EPA

    Also there is a vast difference between the biological effects of ethyl and methyl mercury which you can Google or go to Autism Diva's site and read up on it all.

    If herd immunity rates continue to fall disease will not be rare and far more than 10 or so people will die each year-mostly the very young.

    The anti vaxx crowd is having problems winning lawsuits largely due to terrible science, not understanding what vaccines really contain or how they work. The witness say very ignorant things in cross examination. You can download the transcripts of the current vaccine trial from Autism Diva's website or Google them.


  21. Dear Julie,

    You said:
    "I'm sure you have control over your bathroom habits. I know many who don't. I'm sure they'd like to."

    I don't know about Bev, but as a matter of fact, I don't (and I know several people with Asperger's who wet temselves frequently, and poo in their pants occassionally). I'm nineteen years old and I wet the bed. I've wet myself in publc several times in the last few months. And I'm not even autistic -I just have a related condition (which is less severe - for a brief description see
    I would like to control my bladder. I would like my incontinence treated. That doesn't mean I want the whole way my brain works completely altered. My dyspraxia is part of who I am. It has positive and negative aspects. I can lose or lessen some of the negative aspects without losing who I am, but I wouldn't want to be cured. I do not presume to speak for everyone with a neurological disorder. However, I feel I have more insight into the problems of the "low-functioning" people you describe than a non-disabled person.

    You said:
    "I'm sure you can sleep at night - all through the night. I know many who can't. I'm sure they're sick of it."

    I don't know about Bev's sleeping habits, but I can say that I CAN'T sleep through the night.
    You're right that insomnia sucks. I AM sick of it. I'm also sick of biting my arms, pulling out my hair and getting lost in the small town I've lived in for over twelve years. I'm sick of accidentally injuring myself every time I try to peel a potato. I'm sick of people getting annoyed with me because I cannot remember more than one instruction, (and if there's a delay between being told to do something and doing it then I can't even manage that).

    But I'm not sick of being who I am. I would like to cure my insomnia and bladder problems.I would like to do excercises to improve my co-ordination (although I've accepted I shall never manage to be average in this respect.) I would like assistive technology to make practical tasks easier.

    Much more than those things, I would like understanding. I would like people to realise that the fact I can't drive doesn't make me defective, and for there to be more affordable, accessible pulic transport so that people who can't drive aren't stuck at home all the time. When I ask for n instruction to be repaeted and/or written down, I would like it if people did NOT react as though I had just asked them for a kidney (in fairness, MOST people are reasonable about this.) I would like people to stop making fun of the way I walk/ run/ rock back and forth. I would like schools to have more robust anti-bullying policies. I would like the process of applying for official accomodations at school/university/work to be easier. Most of all, I would like people to realise that all people are equally valuable, regardless of how competent they are at any given task.

    You said:
    "You can talk, you can type, you communicate very well. I know many who can't. Don't you think they want to?"

    Bev CAN talk, but I know from her blog that talking is often difficult for her.

    Some non-verbal autistics can type. For example Amanda Baggs is autistic and completely incapable of speech, but writes well on her blog.

    I have more to say but have run out of time.

  22. Bev,

    To answer your comment, yes - there are certainly times I hate Asperger's. I don't hate my son, but some of the qualities of Asperger's make me want to scream at times. (and yes, typical people make me want to scream at times too - but in a different way) The humming, contrary speak, when he blows in my face in the middle of a conversation, when he bangs his head against me, when a drop of water hits his shirt and he falls to the floor in a tantrum...those things are, at times, hard for me to deal with. There are days when I have an ocean full a patience. There are days when I can certainly see his side of things, when I can prepare him enough to his satisfaction for changes in routine etc...

    But there are also days when I need him to just roll with what's happening. There are days when I just need him to obey me, and do what I'm telling him to do because I'm his mother and I say so. Sometimes he can, sometimes he can't. And when he can't, he REALLY can't.

    There are days when Asperger's = selfishness for me. I realize he's totally not selfish, because he doesn't exactly know what that is. But the distinct lack of empathy, the absence of reciprocity - the appearance of selfishness in his behavior and play skills...sometimes I don't have the ocean of patience. There are days I don't even have a thimble full of it.

    Then, there are days when he is the ONLY kid to befriend the Kid That's Left Out. And he's happy to do it. He also loves school, and is GREAT at it. He can follow directions (for everyone but me) like no one else.

    Does he have a true friend? A go-to person? No, he doesn't. And that hurts me at times. He doesn't seem to be missing it, so I don't push it. But, of course, I wish he had a buddy.

    I get the idea of "hate" from all the Buster signs. Jenny Buster. Puzzle piece buster. GFCF buster. I'm not on a soapbox screaming, "don't vaccinate!!" - my kid has all his vaccines - but I don't understand why the extreme defensiveness to parents who are trying to help their kids.

    I agree that there are parents out there doing INSANE stuff in the name of "curing" their kid. And along those lines, I also believe that if they harm their kids as a result, they should be charged in some way. Autism is not an excuse for irresponsible behavior in a parent.

    I read as many aspie blogs as I can, because I want to understand my son more. And I want to tailor my methods to meet his needs. But a cold hard truth that he will have to learn is that we live in a society where the world will not do that. If he can't function with typical people in a way with which they are comfortable, then they will just leave him out. I'm not saying I agree with that, I'm saying that it's reality.

    Just like aspies function better with aspies - because they have commonalities - so goes the rest of the world.

    Anyway, that's my $1.23. Thanks for your comments and answers.

  23. Aspies, we just waffle on all the time, give us a sentence and we'll take up the whole page. As I get older I realize that normal people are not that different to us. Almost every child back in school experienced similar anxieties and problems fitting in, most people freak out at the shopping mall and have to leave in a hurry because its just too much overload. One thing I have learnt is that its not all about us as much as we would like to think it is and we have to stop being so self-focused. And one last thing I've learnt is we're not all Einsteins. Sure most of us are intelligent but so is the general population. It's a myth that we are geniuses that has been fed to us to over compensate and make us feel so much better about ourselves but instead we use it to feel superior. Now I have to go, my morning garbage truck is coming and I have to be ready to film it.


Squawk at me.
Need to add an image?
Use this code [img]IMAGE-URL-HERE[/img]