Monday, September 25, 2006

Survived Lancaster

Well I am over the Lancaster Conference and just as I thought it was tough on me.

I could have made improvements to the way it was organised which would have improved it for others not just me, with a bit of advance planning.

My advance planning failed mind you, because of the unpredictability of Virgin trains, which despite having assured me on two consecutive days that the trains were running from Coventry on a Sunday, when I arrived at the station they were not.

By now however I am used to anything with the trains :(

My presentation went down Ok I wasn’t lynched for heretical thinking, but I wonder how much notice was taken and if I will have any influence on shifting the paradigms of Social Model thinking. In comparison to Tom Shakespeare I am attacking it from a different model, he is a revisionist for sure, whereas I am actually more radical than the original model.

Well there was lots of fluent bollox spoken and I have to confess I couldn’t follow all this post modern discourse when it is spoken in a lecture theatre. Mind you my language reduced in the opposite direction as I struggled with it all.

I am glad I booked the extra night, because after the conference I just lay on my bed and did not get up till the morning, my limbs aching and feeling total exhaustion.

Maybe I should not have drunk so much after my presentation though, but the relief afterwards led me to such excesses, that and the free wine provided by Tom Shakespeare’s publisher.

Figured out one thing mind, it ain’t us as have necessarily got flat voices we just sing in different harmonies as it were :(

Monday, September 11, 2006

The Groves of Academe

Well I was mega stressed by the whole thing, and although I had my laptop and recording device, I still could not stand to hear falsehoods and inaccuracies perpetrated during the lectures, and I guess at some point I could almost have taken over.

I was full of righteous anger every time the infernal triad was rolled out, if they could but see themselves and realise their own inconsistencies because if you were to add up everyone’s variant version of the memetic triad it would add up to something considerably more than three.

However that apart the thinking at Birmingham is considerably more liberal than elsewhere and we are given more credit than the likes of Amaral and Volkmar would give us.

It was a bad sensory environment and one where I did not know where I was supposed to be most of the time, when my laptop crashed, so did I.

The problem in the evenings was that I tried to be social, but I could have stripped naked and danced on the table and still would have been invisible, because there is something about the intensity of NT's social focus that excludes everything else, I was a tree falling silently even when I lost my temper.

There is a lot I am not happy about today, a lot I did not take in, a lot of consideration that was not given to my own autism despite being in the company of autism "experts" and workers.

I really only felt comfortable with Dinah Murray and Wendy Lawson. Dinah gave me a lift home, with Wendy in the back, I hope they now remember where the best Pylons on the route are, round by the NEC.

Did I forget to introduce Electricity Pylons into my interjections during any of the lectures, no I did not, (tastefully of course)

Other than that I am not very happy at the moment, the first part of the course will not be that difficult for me, but the problem is not what I know, nor what I can learn, but how I present it.

Maybe that is why the likes of Wendy Lawson and Ros Blackburn always get to do the presentations, they are smoother at it.

However in a weeks time, I am really in the Lions den as if Birmingham was not bad enough. I am going to be speaking fluent Larryese to some of the academics who invented the social model of disability and they will no doubt be speaking fluent bollox back.

I have four thousand words to deliver, that would if it were an assignment for my Birmingham course be at Masters level, yet Birmingham expects far less of me. Do you think I feel unappreciated, you can sure I do.

Friday, September 01, 2006

The Infernal Book Meme

Whilst I am awaiting the inspiration to write something more sensible I shall try and come up with suitably Laurentian answers to this parlour game to perplex and annoy.

So leaving out the Bible, and the Encyclopaedia Britannica as one is supposed to do when one lands on the desert Isle, in Roy Plomley's classic Desert Island Discs, here goes. Be prepared for books you have never heard of.

One book that changed my life

Well it is not books that change lives but what one does after one has read them, maybe the first book I ever read, was the one that changed my life most, changing me from an illiterate dyslexic to a child on the path to discovery

One book that you've read more than once

How about two books I've read more than twice, that would have to be something like Le Corbusier's la Ville Radieuse, and Ivor de Wofles (sic) Civilia I guess :)

One book you'd want on a desert island

A survival manual what else? With lots of spare pages you can use as tinder.

One book that made you laugh

DSM IV what else?

One book that made you cry

Books don't make me cry, onions do, maybe a textbook on onions if there is such a thing might make that cognitive leap.

One book you wish you had written

Well how do you know I haven't? I do not wish I had written other peoples books, I wish I had written my own.

One book you wish had never been written

I suppose the Empty Fortress by you know who:(

Other than that…

Anything by Fred Volkmar

One book you're currently reading

Er, I am reading the screen at the moment, anyway a recent blog will tell you one book I have recently read, currently I am attempting to wade through a swathe of books, including Hello Americans, which is a biography of Orson Welles by actor Simon Callow. I ordered the book after seeing him promote it at a literary event in Brum. Like as not it is so thick it will end up like the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, by Edward Gibbons, a book I shall never finish.

One book you've been meaning to read

Majia Holmer Nadesan (2005) Constructing Autism: Unravelling the 'truth'

Apparently it is a Larry sort of book, not a Kirby or a Lathe take on autism but a book about how the whole notion is socially constructed. I have managed to get the School of Education at Brum Uni to order it for the library, you see I have started being subversive at Birmingham already and I am not even onto the course yet :)

Oh yes and before I end let me add one of my own

One book you found particularly challenging

William Dugdale's Monasticon Anglicanum, being as I was only seventeen when I read it in its original first edition dated 1655 in Latin, not having had the benefit of a public school education where one learns Latin at the end of a stick. Lots of fine pictures in it though and I do own a book of these being prints by Wenceslaus Hollar.

Now who shall I tag next?

Nobody that is far too social an activity for me to get my mind round:)