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Showing posts from October, 2014

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A + for The A-Word: The most authentic look at Autism on screen.

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I worked for several years with a succession of autistic children—which mostly means boys—kids who were mainstreamed in regular education classrooms, with a classroom aide assigned to shadow them. That was me, the shadow. 

We also lived next door to a family who had an autistic son who became one of our son’s closest playmates, until we moved away at the end of elementary school. Chris, with his funny idiosyncrasies is the source of some very sweet memories, as well as moments of high drama. That’s what you get with autism, children who can be deeply involved when their needs and passions are directed and shared but who can sometimes find it frustrating when those needs are brushed aside. 

It’s typical for an autistic child to want to talk about dinosaurs—or whatever the passion is—and be frustrated while the rest of the kids have moved on to another topic. The autistic child is focused on that stegasaurus and exactly how cool it is, just not quite getting that the others don't shar…

Leaving Home: A Divorce Story [Part Three]

Leaving Home: The Beginning I looked at the clock glowing on the dashboard; just after eleven...

Leaving Home: Part Two He was tall and almost cool with aviators and a mustache that matched his shaggy golden brown hair...


Leaving Home: Part ThreeThe next couple of months blurred by. Phillip kept up, I don't know, I guess I'd call it a full frontal attack, but gently. First came the awkward acknowledgment that calling all over Vegas, hunting me down, was going too far. He neighed his whinny of a laugh.

"I guess I got a little crazy."

In return, did I tell him I didn't need crazy in my life? Did I tell him to scram, to get lost? Did I tell him we were on two separate journeys? Or instead did I say nothing? Did I find his fascination fascinating and blush demurely when he talked about the skin in the hollow of my throat or told me I looked pretty in pink?

Funny how something like that, a compliment when you're craving one, can stop up a hole for awhile.

Otherwise the d…

#15 Leaving Home: A Divorce Story [Part Two]

#15 Euclid Street, Santa Monica

Last week I posted the first part of this transition piece, the story of my first marriage, the tale that took me from my parents' home to my first place. Leaving Home: The Beginningis #15 of the On The Street Where I Live stories. You may want to read it before you read this. Here's the second installment.

Leaving Home: Part Two

He was tall and almost cool with aviators and a mustache that matched his shaggy golden brown hair. What made Phillip uncool was the way he had to shove those aviators up his slippery nose over and over, an act of uncoolness I could relate to all too well. The other thing that marked him as uncool was that he was full-time; a management trainee at Drug Star in Santa Monica. The rest of us that worked there, the young ones anyway, were part time. We were going to school, trying to be something else, trying to find a real place to start our careers. The drug store as a place to have a career? Definitely not cool. 
At first I …

#15 Leaving Home: A Divorce Story [The Beginning]

#15 Euclid Street, Santa Monica, California

I've been married twice; one that didn't take, and one that did (knock on wood).This is about the one that didn't. You'll notice, it's only the beginning. I'm not sure how long it will end up being, as long — or as short — as it takes I guess. It's one of those transition pieces, the story that took me from my parents' apartment on Fourteenth Street in Santa Monica to a sweet little back house one short block away on Euclid, #15 of the On the Street Where I Live stories. If you've been here before you know this isn't a story in the fictional sense of the word, it's memoir. I'm of an age where I'm looking back, trying to figure out the route my life has followed. A few of you have showed an interest; thanks for that.

Also, I hate titles; mainly because I'm no good at them. I think I'll call this one 

Leaving Home

I looked at the clock glowing on the dashboard; just after eleven. I don…