Monday, August 06, 2007

You have the right to remain strange

After one particularly smoky afternoon session back in the Green House on Adelaide Road days, the flat got into a discussion on where evolution would take humans of the future. Three of them concluded that we would learn to use our existing brains more efficiently. Then there was me, who argued volubly and voluminously that humans would grow bigger heads. I foresaw generations of mothers too posh to push creating a long line of hydrocephalic bouncing babies.

Perhaps it will be a schizophrenic that saves the day, or a Tourette's Syndrome Field Marshall who wins the war, or a motor neuron cripple re-writing our understanding of physics. Oh wait, we already have one of those. Thing is, no-one knows what's going to be useful in the future. We are mutants. Our children are mutants. Their kids will be mutants. And so on.

Our parents were mutants, but they would be reluctant to admit it.

The old man's OBE is up for grabs tonight at the Hustle for Autism gig. "Are you sure?" says the Pead chick. Lest any assume there is some pre-cognitive dissonance in this decision (that's 'doubt' for non-beltway types), I'd better explain my rationale. A couple of reasons followed by a story.

The first reason is beauty. There's a symmetry in hocking off an Order for a disorder. As for the paper signed by Liz and Phil, it will mean more to the successful bidder than to this Republican. The second reason is that it will remove the lingering temptation to sell it off and blow it on strippers and drugs. This is a much better reason. Now for a story.

Dad shouted us a feed in some restaurant in Tauranga in the summer of '78. There's brother Randy Gonzales and sister Uptight Rodriguez too. Somehow, the family repartee had got us onto the subject of kids with disabilities. I'm not sure how an 8 year old, a 12 year old and a fourteen year old got onto the subject. Maybe it was Randy. Randy had come out as Deaf, but I hadn't. The exact reason is lost in the mists of time. Trev says:

"A guy came to me once for advice. He was married, had a couple of kids. The third one pops out and has Down's Syndrome. This guy asks me what he should do. So I say, 'You are happily married with two normal kids. The third one is a lost cause. The time you normally accorded your two kids will be sucked up with this child. And for what? It will never be of use to society, just a burden. I say, kill it. And he did."

See you at the gig.