We ALL see the world differently, based on how our minds and emotions process it. Wouldn’t it be fun to give yourself a shot at looking through someone else’s glasses for a change?
Segway into my post for the week!
adjective: quirky; comparative adjective: quirkier; superlative adjective: quirkiest
1.characterized by peculiar or unexpected traits.
“Now that’s a quirky kid.”
eccentric, idiosyncratic, unconventional, unorthodox, unusual, strange, bizarre, peculiar, odd, outlandish, zany
Don’t the words above describe people that you’re either friends with or would love to be friends with?
I LOVE quirky people: big ones, small ones, short ones, tall ones…(a little Suess-ism)
My nephew, Ryan, is one of my favorite quirky kids. Now, seriously…my sister, Karin, her husband ‘Iggy’ (don’t ask), and Ryan’s sister Megan need a medal and huge hot fudge sundaes with marshmallows AND extra sprinkles because Ryan is UNconvential to the max.
Ryan recently charged $46,000 to an online train store in Jersey for all the latest trains he admired in a new DVD he got for Christmas. He acted out a great scene in Land Before Time where Little Foot and Cera jump off a cliff into a river…my sister’s toilet bowl, hence the $1000 plumber’s bill. Ryan stole the basket of biscuits off a neighboring restaurant table while he screamed ‘Weed Rat! Weed Rat’ at the top of his lungs when his mother’s shish-kabobs were delivered.
He pulled ALL the wallpaper off the wall in his hotel room at the Fort Will Henry Hotel in Lake George (hey…it was peeling), took out the Walmart cashier (security and the fire dept showed up) because the cashier took his DVD out of his hands for a price check. He ran away from the local Little League to illegally enter a private residence (we have no idea who the man was) to settle in and watch a few videos he brought with him (our whole town was on lock down for this one). This was right after he ran in circles around a nice man with only one leg screaming ‘No leg! No leg!” and kept pulling up his shortened pant leg to see where the heck it went.
But that wasn’t the worst…by no means…At the grocery store, while Ryan ‘sat’ in the cart waiting to check out he began to flick the excess, drooping skin on the neck of the elderly man behind him, back and forth, back and forth. The man was my sister’s high school english teacher.
Ryan LOVES Sesame Street…He has about 175 video tapes and 2000 figurines (yes…we find the old ones on ebay) and DVDs. And he has every one memorized. He recently got to go to the Elmo on Sesame Street Live show and had a great time screaming and jumping up and down, up and down…and that was during the quiet parts.
Karin and Iggy smile and venture on, giving the urchin his baths, helping him dress and brush his teeth. They comb his hair, pick out his clothes then it’s off to school, an hour away, on his little, short bus.
Ryan is nineteen years old and is 6′ 3″ and weighs 200 lbs.
(Just picture the other parents at the Sesame Street Show this past summer.)
Ryan has Autism. He eats only pizza for breakfast lunch and dinner(taste/texture sensitivity), he is very picky about his clothing (touch sensitivity) he often wears headphones in public (noise sensitivity), does not interact with others unless he needs something. His language is limited to meeting his needs, he is easily frustrated and often acts out because of his difficulty understanding his frustrations, and he has little interest in the outside world (social isolation). His family, his awesome respite worker, George and his school are his lifeline to the outside world. Left to his own devices he would disintegrate into a world of videos where he gets the ‘stimulation’ he requires to cope in this ‘abrasive’ world.
He ‘sees’ the world differently and processes external stimulus differently than we do.
Ryan is a gift to our family. Do we sometimes we find ourselves grieving for him? Absolutely, but really we are grieving for ourselves and what we expect for his life. He is one of the cooliest, funniest, happiest kids I know! He lives life in the moment, doing what he wants to when he wants to. His only disapointment is when we try to squeeze him into society’s expectations. He is the ultimate ‘ID’-man. No ego or super-ego cross checking his thoughts or actions. Ryan will never drive, or go to college, or go out on a date, or get married or have children. He will always live my sister and her husband and then with me and Mr. M if anything (God-forbid) were to happen to them.
As my sister says, “Having Ryan is like buying a ticket to go to France, but landing in Holland. It’s not bad, just different.
Ryan is one of those quirky kids and our family has learned more by watching him manuever the world than we could in any classroom in history.
He is truly NECESSARY, a symbiotic entity in this world.
As are all of the awesome quirky, unconventional, strange, bizarre, odd people in this world.
Come on…you know them…the ones who go through moods like they do potato chips, the ones who would save their dog in a fire before their husband, the ones who take their shoes off at the door, washes them at the sink, packs the toes with the original stuffing and stretcher rod, then returns them to the original box in her closet (yeah…she’s mine…I love this woman to hell and back and wouldn’t trade her for seventy boxes of Milky Ways).
The ones who can’t drive over bridges, the ones who drink too much, gamble too much, church too much or love too much. The ones who are emotionally limited, the ones who are intellectually limited, the ones who are physically limited, and yeah…the ones who are common sense limited. Those people who on first glance we’d say….hmmmmm…..where is the value? But there IS value, there IS something to be experienced, something to be learned, something to be gained…something to be changed by, if you’d only take a minute to learn about them and take a look at the world through their glasses.
They make me want to be a better man!(or woman)
I usually end up with friends (the ones who tolerate me) that ALL make me a better person. Most of them are quirky little shits (Misty, Renee, Rachael, V, Susannah, Kym and Alison!) that challenge my boundaries everyday. And I wouldn’t have it any other way.
Loving and accepting and truly seeing the value in the ‘non-conventional’ is what makes us GROW. We have something to learn from everyone on the fae of this earth.
What ARE we gonna do when Human Genetic Engineering (a process by which scientists and medical professionals alter the genetic makeup, or DNA, in a living human cell to fix defective genes that cause diseases and other genetic complications) becomes the next “Anal Bleaching” fad? Designer babies, it’s on the horizon people!
Would you ever design your own child?
Who’s on your Jerry Maguire roster? Who makes you a better person?
What quirkisms are in your personality that make you … YOU?
Historically ‘Quirky’ individuals with characteristics of Autism:
- Henry Cavendish
- Emily Dickenson
- Adolf Hitler
- Thomas Jefferson
- James Joyce
- Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
- Isaac Newton
- Albert Einstein
These great minds were joined later by great minds such as:
- Andy Warhol
- Dan Akroyd
- Tim Burton
- Daryll Hannah
- Dan Harmon (creator of the show Community)
- James Durbin (American Idol)
- Temple Grandin (revolutionary in the field of Agriculture and Animal Sciences)
PS!! Don’t forget to read our LitSwagger Pick The Siren by Tiffany Reisz. We will be discussing at the end of February…Talk about a QUIRKY gal!!!!