Thanks to all of those who visited my last post about heading north. Even four likes makes me feel good to know that there are others out there who can empathize. Having returned from Grimsby, I can say that my mother in law is as well as can be expected. However, her dementia is severe enough that she will probably never return to her home and will live out her remaining days in a nursing home. In her case, that’s not such a bad thing. But thanks to all who shared their concern.
It’s been a roller coaster fortnight for me. Last week I had all the heavy metal thrills of going to the Download Festival, this week my wife and I have received news that her mother has been sectioned by social services for 28 days. Naturally, this has had a devastating effect on my wife and I’m doing my best to support her. However, it hasn’t left me time to write and at the weekend, we’ll be heading North to Grimsby to see my mother in law. Thank you all for your patience and hopefully, things will return to normal next week.
Par for the course now, many of my posts lead onto further posts and last week’s had led to my thoughts now. Last post, I talked about how I would be wary if the British Broadcasting Company (BBC) made a movie about my book, “He Was Weird.” I won’t go back over covered ground so if you’re reading Peaceful Rampage for the first time, then go back and read that post at your leisure.
What I am talking about here is one particular scene from the book. It has been called by some, the girl fight. Most readers deduce from the story that Mark’s one love interest, Lisa, is also getting bullied. Mark’s actions have an impact on her and her family. In fact, her father takes her away for the summer because of all the press attention afforded her through her brief liaison with Mark. She returns home after the summer and goes back to school. On the first day, she is accosted by her bullies, actually her chief bully and the bully’s followers. When Lisa tries to avoid confrontation, the chief bully remarks, “What are you gonna do? Get a gun and shoot me like your boyfriend did in New Jersey.” At this point, Lisa snaps and goes for her bully resulting in a one sided mauling of the bully.
Thoughts of how this fight would be made on the big screen fall into two camps. Camp one is the BBC. Like I said in the previous post, the BBC shies away from violence. Plus, there is a strong feminist core with the corporation who would think it wrong to see two girls engage in a fight no matter what the result or intention. Many readers are with Lisa in this part. However, in a BBC film, the fight would have been relegated to a face slap with the bully running off in tears, vowing to get revenge on the assailant. To me, that wouldn’t have been enough revenge against Lisa’s bully.
Camp two comes out of Hollywood. Throughout the century of film, there have been a good number of movies that had female fight scenes. Just check out Youtube. Therefore, Hollywood would have had the fight in its full glory. The downside to this is that it would not have been so one sided. From what I’ve seen from Hollywood, Lisa and her foe would have rolled around on the ground for a bit with some punches thrown both ways before Lisa finally prevailed. For me, that would have diminished the impact of the revenge she finally gets on her bullies. But to Hollywood, that wouldn’t have mattered because the men in the audience get to see a good ‘girl fight.’ BBC and Hollywood, one extreme or the other.
Now this brings me to the crux of the post. See, I would have been one of those men in the audience who would have been glad to see that female fight. I have always loved watching such things, starting when I saw my first lady’s wrestling match on TV when I was eight. With my Autistic anxieties, I’ve been afraid to speak out about it out of fear of being branded a perv. Especially as I find myself unable to explain exactly why this is the case. Furthermore, I fear that some people out there think that I put that girl fight into the story in order to get some sort of erotic thrill out of it. I assure you, that was not in mind at the time I wrote it. In “He Was Weird,” I wanted to show that Mark’s violent way of dealing with his bullies gave other victims the courage to stand up to their bullies in a less violent way. Lisa surely gets her revenge on her bullies. Hopefully that would be the conclusion of all of those who read that part. My fear is that should it be made into a film, that impact would be lost.
To buy He Was Weird go to https://www.amazon.co.uk/He-Was-Weird-Michael-Lefevre/dp/1909740942/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1493759398&sr=1-1&keywords=he+was+weird
What author wouldn’t want their book made into a move? There may be some but I know that I would. Seeing my words turned into real life on the big screen would be the ultimate achievement. However, I would be more than a little worried if the filmmakers happened to come from the British Broadcasting Company, the BBC. This isn’t because I think that the BBC would tamper with the plot or anything like that. No, my worry is over the fact that in the past, the BBC has shied away from violence. Take the fantastic 1970s television series, “I Claudius.” Having read the book, there were numerous accounts of gladiator battles plus Claudius’s remarkable conquest of Britain. Therefore, I would have expected some sword play in the series but there was none. I found that disappointing.
The BBC did make a film about one of the books on school shootings, which I post about, “We Need to Talk About Kevin.” In my opinion, the filmmakers didn’t do the book justice. I won’t go into some of the scenes from the book that were left out in the film, which I thought shouldn’t have been. It’s the scene were Kevin actually carries out his school massacre. We only get a few seconds of Kevin shooting his arrows. We don’t see any of them hitting their targets or any reaction from Kevin or his victims. Hell, the bow he used in the movie wasn’t the same type described in the book. This is my reservation about the BBC making the movie of “He Was Weird,” the shooting would be left out. All we would see is a five second clip of Mark shooting his Uzi and that would be it. Such a thing would do my book a great disservice.
If a movie was to be made from “He Was Weird,” it would be imperative to see the school shooting in full. Some readers were actually glad when Mark finally gets his revenge on his bullies, although some of those said that they felt a little guilty about that after they read of Mark’s carnage. They’re right though, the audience needs to see Mark finally get is revenge after all his suffering up until that point. One piece of feedback went further to say that one can feel him releasing all of his hate when he double taps (he shoots them again) some of those he shot. I’m not saying we need to see blood and gore on “Saving Private Ryan” scale, although there would be filmmakers who would go to that extreme but we would need to see the shooting from the first shots all the way to the end. I would worry that the BBC wouldn’t do that.
Other parts of the book could be omitted or expanded upon depending on how the filmmaker viewed those bits. I would be interested to see how Mark’s “Week in Paradise” would have been covered. Again, there, I would worry that some filmmakers would age Mark in the film so they could have a sex scene. from that chapter. I don’t see the need myself. Besides, that is where Mark officially enters puberty.
What caught the attention of New Generation Publishing was the ice hockey scenes. The head of the company told me he liked how the reader was reading about Mark scoring first the tie-ing goal and then the winning goal to give the Junior Flyers the championship. One second, you are celebrating with Mark on the ice, then all of a sudden, you’re back in his bedroom while he is celebrating because the computer is saying his team won. Therefore, I would hope that any hockey scene from the book, used in the film, would be real.
They will probably never make a movie from “He Was Weird,” but here’s to dreaming. I wouldn’t tell the BBC no if they offered but I would hope that they wouldn’t cut out any of the shooting or the bullying because both form the basis behind the entire story.
To buy He Was Weird, go to https://www.amazon.co.uk/He-Was-Weird-Michael-Lefevre/dp/1909740942/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1493150135&sr=1-1&keywords=he+was+weird
Last night, while reading my Google Alerts for Bullying, I came across a very interesting but disturbing story. The link on the alert led me to an article about a new bullying game on Snapchat. In this game, players are encourage to come up with the worst possible insults they can hurl at another person, be it about their appearance, personality, weight or anything else. My reaction to this was, “Who in their right mind would come up with something like this?” I mean isn’t there enough crap in the world without people wanting to hurt others through a game. The article was published in several British newspapers so the game might be just in the UK, although it will probably spread world wide if allowed to continue. Personally, if it does, I think that any victim of this Snapchat abuse should do the American thing and sue the game’s creator. Obviously, there are a lot of sickos in the world.
Fortunately, this story has a happy side to it. One 12 year old girl from Devon, UK named Betsy Chamberlain stood up to all those who play this game. She wrote her own story on Snapchat saying how disgusting this game was and it was cruel and mean and that she would have no part in playing it. Betsy’s mother, Rachaele Hambleton states how proud she is of her daughter for taking this stand against this horrible bullying game. Well Rachaele, I’m proud of Betsy too for the same reasons. Rachaele has now written about this game in her own blog, Part Time Working Mummy, to warn people of the potential dangers of this game. She has also alerted many parents to it as well. Hopefully, this will go far in getting victims to speak out if they are being bullied online or anywhere else.
An additional thought, inspired by my beautiful Aspergers mind, came from the only online comment on the article. It simply states, “Now blogger is an employment option.” You sorely missed the point here mate. Yes the mother works part time and yes she writes a blog but she doesn’t do it for a living. I don’t know anyone who writes a blog for a living. In my case, there is a indirect financial motive for writing Peaceful Rampage and that is so you will all go out and buy my book, “He Was Weird.” But I work a full time job plus two part time ones and none of them are to do with blogging. The thing is that Rachelle Hambleton wrote her article in order alert others to the dangers of this game and to rightfully give praise to her daughter Betsy for being brave and standing up for what she believed was wrong. I praise Betsy too.
To view the newspaper article in The Sun, here’s the link: https://www.thesun.co.uk/living/3016323/mum-horrified-when-daughter-tells-her-about-new-snapchat-bullying-game-but-is-left-proud-by-her-response/
To buy He Was Weird, go to https://www.amazon.co.uk/He-Was-Weird-Michael-Lefevre/dp/1909740942/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1488915055&sr=1-1&keywords=he+was+weird
With all my reflection of my past, another ‘what if’ arises to play with my Asperger’s mind. This one goes back to late 1986, early 87 when I attended Queen Mary College in London. During that time, I was feeling very angry towards the United States after receiving a letter that for me at the time was the straw that broke the camel’s back and had me declaring that I hated my country. That event was the Veteran’s Administration refusing to give me any of my Veteran’s Education money on the grounds that my course of study wasn’t approved.
I told my immediate friends, both American and British, about my feelings and all of them were very sympathetic towards me. However, I toyed with the idea that I should tell my story to the college newspaper. I thought it might be a good story about how an American veteran is being so badly treated by his country. I’m sure that many a British student and a good number of Americans would have been surprised and impressed at what I had to say. So why didn’t I?
The main reason was that I was afraid of being thought of as an attention seeker. This was something I was accused of being in my childhood and in my young adult life, I went too far the other way out of fear of being thought of as such. Furthermore, there was the two extremes of British politics at the college. On the left, I would have been seen as a martyr against the Imperialist American state. The positive being that they would have jumped on my story as proof of how America treats the working class, even though they served the country. I know I would have been caught up in that furor. Meanwhile, the right would have been quick in their attempts to discredit me. They would have tried to make me out to be some whinging crybaby and downplay the validity of my accounts. Not that I feared anything from them really. Then of course, it would have put the other American students in an awkward situation, again, I wouldn’t have cared too much about that. However, most would have said nothing in public while secretly wishing me that it all would work out for me.
Another thing to note would be the fact that I would have said something a few British students might not have liked. See, during my year at Queen Mary, there was this stereotype by British students that all American ones were filthy rich. That surely didn’t apply to me and because of that, I would have attacked that stereotype. Some British students would have taken offense to that. I don’t think the college administration would have been too happy with me either for accusing the college of thriving on the myth that all American students were rich. In my defense, I would have likened myself to Fredrick Douglas, an escaped slave who spoke for the abolitionist cause. When he was talking about slavery in the South, he was a hero but when he spoke out against prejudice in the North, it didn’t sit too well with people. It might have been the same with me in regards to the US and the UK.
In hindsight, I think that I should have told my story to the college paper, warts and all. I would have gotten it all off my chest and not have been such an angry young man. I realize now that most of my anxieties over why I didn’t do it wouldn’t have impacted much on my story and it would have explained a lot to people about me. It wouldn’t have been attention seeking either and I think that people might have been generally interested in what I had to say. Of course, if there were blogs thirty years ago, it would have been that much easier.
To buy He Was Weird, go to https://www.amazon.co.uk/He-Was-Weird-Michael-Lefevre/dp/1909740942/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1488318403&sr=1-1&keywords=he+was+weird
Justifying myself has been something I did constantly throughout my early life. The reasons were mainly down to people not understanding where I was coming from or taking something I said totally the opposite direction from what I intended. This is a common occurrence with those who have Autistic Spectrum Disorder and another reason as to why I think I’m on said spectrum. Then again, bullying came into play here as well. Either as an excuse to unleash or threaten violence on me, these people would intentionally misinterpret something I said or in the case of a third party, misrepresent or just simply lie to my tormentor(s). Often times, this feigned ignorance would be used as a source of amusement against me because I would find myself desperately trying to explain myself only for it to fall on deaf ears. I know now that many times, those ears were intentionally deaf.
Such an occurrence happened as a result of my post last week. Some who read that post on Facebook may have gotten the wrong idea about me saying that leaving America isn’t the answer to Donald Trump. In one case, I was asked if I were in Nazi Germany, would I have said to the Jews they should stay. My answer would have been no. Hopefully Donald Trump will not be anything like Hitler but if he is, then those who are the most vulnerable to his persecutions should flee the country. But if he’s not, then the best way to fight back against him is to stay and show your opposition to him, within the confines of the law of course. Yes, he may try to change the law to effect my last sentence but that opens up an entirely different debate which I won’t go into now.
Another stems from the what has become commonly known as ‘liberal intolerance.’ The premise that liberals and those on the left believe that they alone are right that they refuse to hear any alternative opinions from those considered on the right or conservative. What’s worse, is that the left begin calling these adversaries rednecks or stupid. Many of them are neither, they just have a view that you don’t agree with. However, I have seen and heard the same type of intolerance from the right. Once, when I expressed concerns about mandatory drug testing, I was called a ‘shit for brains drugger.’ When I pointed out that Sweden hadn’t fought a war in over 200 years, I was told to go live there. Furthermore, while the left called anyone voting for Trump a redneck, one person tried to dissuade me from voting for Jill Stein because the Green Party was socialist. Hey, they branded Obama that in two elections and it worked neither time.
One more point from last week: As predicted, the Democrats are blaming Jill Stein for Hilary Clinton’s defeat and are calling Stein a spoiler. Well, the maths tell another story. After the election a poll was taken of Jill Stein voters asking how they would have voted if she wasn’t on the ballot. Here are the results:
Only 25% said they would have voted for Clinton
14% said they would have voted for Trump
Most importantly, 61% said they would not have voted at all!
Proof that Jill Stein did not lose the election for Hilary
Since I feel like I’m on a roll, I’m going to justify myself with everything to get it all out in the open. In the past, with my Aspergers’ and DAMP tendencies, I have been afraid of doing so for many reasons. So now, I’m not holding back and while you might not agree with me on some or many points, I hope you will respect my opinions for they come as a result of experience and not because I read some book or attended a lecture.
I sit just left of centre on the political fence. This is in British terms of where the fence lies. In American terms, I would be seen as a Trotskyite, Marxist, radical, I’m not I assure you. Yes, I did delve into Marx in the mid 80s but I have long since concluded that it is a nice theory that will never work in reality.
Anyone can be a perpetrator or victim of racism. While it is true that most of it is carried out by whites against non-whites, it certainly doesn’t mean that racist acts carried out by non-white groups should be justified or ignored. Point: I’ve heard racial minorities say the same things against other minority groups that whites say. I’ve heard Africans call Asians ‘Pakis’ and Hispanics ‘Spicks’ and I’ve heard both of those call Blacks ‘Niggers.’ Pointing this out does not make me a racist. I think the only race we should all regard is the human race.
I have no problem with anyone who follows a belief, philosophy or religion. All I ask is that you don’t try to convert me around to your way of thinking because I believe that that’s the root of the problem starts. Everyone should quietly live according to their own beliefs and not try to push theirs on anyone.
Having lived in two countries, there are things good about both of them. An example from each: The National Health Service does work in the UK. In the US, I see the benefit of lower or no tax on items such as clothes, food and petrol. Both countries do some things better than the other and vice versa.
I don’t think the US 2nd Amendment, The Right to Bear Arms will ever be repealed. I sympathize with the argument that it has become outdated but it’s been ingrained in the minds of too many Americans. In a post I wrote some months ago, I pointed out that there are plenty of gun laws in America to control it. However, these laws aren’t being adequately enforced. That’s just wrong, so let’s start by doing that.
Now to the First Amendment, which I have used pretty much throughout this post. You have the right to tell me you disagree with me, I only ask that you do it without hurling insults or calling names. Furthermore, I think that right wing extremists and Muslim hate preachers should be allowed a platform to speak their views. This way, most reasonable people can see them for what they are. The BBC did this successfully when they allowed Nick Griffin, leader of the far right British National Party (BNP) on Question Time. There’s hardly been a peep out of him since he was on that show.
This is me for all to see. I don’t need to justify myself and in the future, if you should read something you don’t agree with or are not clear on, just ask.
To buy He Was Weird, go to: https://www.amazon.co.uk/He-Was-Weird-Michael-Lefevre/dp/1909740942/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1479840352&sr=1-1&keywords=he+was+weird
Now that the US election is finally over and Donald Trump will be the next president, (I voted for Jill Stein), I am now taking time to reflect on reactions and possibilities resulting from Trump’s election. One thing that has caught my attention and amused me is the amount of people who now want to leave the US because they don’t like the fact that Trump was elected. Even my sister joked about emigrating to Australia. All the talk about people leaving the country has brought back something from my past and now I feel the need to share it.
Thirty years ago, I was a rather angry young man. Experiences after coming out of the marines left me with the feeling that I had given America the four best years of my life only for America to give me nothing but heartache in return. The final straw came when I was went to England to study at the University of London for a year. I had been in college for about two months when the Veteran’s Administration informed me that my course of study wasn’t approved and they weren’t going to pay for my studies. Of course they also sent me forms for the college to fill out in order to get approval but for me but my mind had already been made up that America had screwed me once too many times.
Growing up in a religious family, I decided to pour my soul out to the college chaplain. After all, he was very vocal against then president Ronald Reagan’s Contra War on Nicaragua so I thought he’d give me loads of sympathy and help me get on a plane to Sweden. He wasn’t shocked at my opening line: “This might shock you coming from an American student but I hate my country.” I then proceeded to explain how America had gone too far to the right under Reagan and I was a victim of social and political intolerance in that country. He listened but he had no intention of putting me on that plane to Sweden. It was what he said about Reagan America that has relevance here. He told me, that leaving America would only serve Reagan because there would be nobody to voice opposition to him.
These days, I see his point. The problem was back then, I was such an angry young man that I believed his words proved a former work colleague back in America who was ultra- conservative to be right. This colleague used to say that every non American in the world was trying to come to the US, not true. However, if all the Trump haters left the country because they didn’t like him, that would only strengthen him as there would be little opposition. The best way to keep Trump or any elected official in check is to voice your opposition to them. If that official does something you don’t agree with that might be bad for the nation, let them know it and let those who voted for that official know it too. Leaving the country is not the answer. Besides, Trump won’t know or care if you did leave.
During her campaign, Stein took advice in the words of one of my heroes, Jello Biafra, who said the best thing to do, especially against a corporate entrenched medial is to become the media. Inform people why you believe what you do and why you didn’t vote for Donald Trump or in my case Hillary Clinton either. The problem is the way the left has gone about it and here again, Biafra’s words are wise. Simply calling someone who doesn’t agree with you a redneck or a bigot or in Clinton’s case, deplorable isn’t going to win them around to your way of thinking. In fact, it will drive them in the opposite direction. One of the things that made me so determined to vote Stein was the Democrats insistence that voting for Jill was a vote for Donald Trump. I found that very patronizing just as much as calling someone who doesn’t agree with you, ‘stupid.’
Now some who know me may be thinking I’m a hypocrite because I have lived in Great Britain since I came here thirty years ago. Yes, sure my angry young man phase had a lot to do with it but the main reason I remained in the UK was down to affairs of the heart. If I hadn’t met and married a British woman, I probably would have ended up back in the US. Otherwise, I might have gone back to the US when Bill Clinton was elected president. Even when we split in 2000, the idea of returning was a non issue because I feared I would never see my three children again. Besides, I doubt that Sweden would have let me emigrate there, I could be wrong. What I do know in my Autumn years is that the chaplain was right on this one, (though I still say he was incorrect to say that I came to Britain to run away). The best way to keep Donald Trump or any politician you don’t agree in check with is to voice your opposition in the correct manner.
To buy He Was Weird, go to https://www.amazon.co.uk/He-Was-Weird-Michael-Lefevre/dp/1909740942/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1479122372&sr=1-1&keywords=he+was+weird
In my last post, I talked about the intolerance I received as a youth and young adult over my clothing. Briefly, I caught a lot of grief from people because I still wanted to wear a baseball jacket when I was eleven and for growing my hair long when I got out of the marines. While it wasn’t as severe as the grief I got for my hair, I also caught a lot of intolerance over my chosen footwear, my Native American moccasin boots. The experience left me feeling rather bitter in many ways and kick started my angry young man phase, whose peak was reached the first year I came to Great Britain.
One good thing, if you want to call it that, arose from all that intolerance. It made me learn to be more tolerant towards others, especially in the realm of clothing. For many years, this tolerance wasn’t tested much but recently, with all the talk about women’s dress and Islam over the past few years, that tolerance has been tested a lot more and it hasn’t always been easy.
First, let me join in the burka debate. Like so many well meant Westerners, I thought that this item of clothing was a means of suppression. I will agree that in some sects of Islam, it is. My eyes were opened quite a few years back when I was supply teaching at a school not far away. The school secretary was a Muslim woman in full burka. I have to admit, my personal stereotypes here had me around the edges until the woman initiated a conversation with me. After about 0.3 seconds of conversion with her, I realised that there was an actual person under the clothing and any prejudices I had rapidly vanished. So, I don’t think the burka should be banned, after all, it’s only an item of clothing and if a woman really wants to wear it, men have no right to object.
To head off some of those who are now flexing their typing fingers in response, I am the first person to acknowledge that their are Muslim men who want all women to cover up and if they had the power, would ban the mini skirt. I too was a little incensed when I read about gangs of Muslim men patrolling the streets of East London, calling themselves a Sharia patrol and ordering women to cover up. Furthermore, I have never agreed that a woman is asking for sex just because she chooses to wear such and item of clothing. She too has a right to wear what she wants and that even includes a woman who wears a mini skirt whom some men think she doesn’t have ‘the legs to wear one.’ That shouldn’t matter.
Maybe the Mormons are on to something here. Many of them claim that a woman can be beautiful without having to either hide it or flaunt it. A point to ponder here.
I think that the French shot themselves in the foot recently when officials at a beach banned a woman because she was wearing a burkini. When she was kicked off the beach, along with her children, I seriously doubt that she went home and changed into a bikini or even a one piece swimming costume and returned. No, she will probably never go to the beach again and that’s not fair for her. So France, I think you need to have a rethink on that one. While I don’t ever recall seeing a burkini, I would have no problem if I did see one.
Maybe because I was brought up seeing them that I’m used to it but while a woman should have the right to wear the burkini, she also has the right to wear a bikini. Yes, the more religious will claim that she is showing herself like a piece of meat but I don’t see it that way. I just see a woman wearing the necessary clothing to have a swim.
Now, I know that I have been mainly talking about women with religious views to clothing here but that has been the area wear my tolerance has been tested. For too many years, men of all persuations have been trying too hard to dictate to women what they should wear. I think that people have the right to wear what they like and that even includes men who like to wear dresses. It doesn’t effect my life so who the hell am I to judge. The same goes for body piercings, hair cuts or anything else that person fancies. I will endeavour to be tolerant of it because I have felt what it is like to suffer intolerance because of it.
To buy He Was Weird, go to: https://www.amazon.co.uk/He-Was-Weird-Michael-Lefevre/dp/1909740942/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1473873538&sr=1-1&keywords=he+was+weird
Around three months ago, I wrote a post called “Billy No Mates,” where I explained how the lack of friends during the period that inspired me to write “He Was Weird,” has given me much anxieties over the years that passed. I was and sometimes am still worried that nobody is going to like me and no one is going to be my friend. Recently, I realise that there is another aspect to these anxieties that I didn’t think about then. So, I’ll post about that now.
Last week, I had a small vacation with my wife and two of my step-granddaughters in the Northern British city of Newcastle Upon Tyne. My wife goes every year (she loves the city) but this was the first time, I accompanied her in four years but that’s not important. Our routine is that at night, she settles down by reading and spending quality time with the grand-kids while I go out and have a few pints. I usually toddle home sometime between 11 or 12 and never intoxicated.
Well that was before our first night there. Now, before I go on, what you are about to read is not an attempt by me to make any excuses. I went to the only rock bar left in Newcastle and was enjoying my beer while listening to good tunes. A small group of people were nearby and the lady in the group points out my t-shirt and says it’s cool. (My shirt displayed pictures of George Bush and George W Bush about a caption that read ‘Dumb and Dumber.’) Anyway, I join these people and we get along famously. The pub closes and it is suggested we go to a place that’s open longer, so I follow them. When that place closes, we hit another place and then another. It turned out that the one guy was determined to drink Newcastle dry this night. When we hit another bar, it is now three AM and I am thinking that I should return to my hotel but this guy states that he just paid for me to get in the place so I went in. In the end, I didn’t get back to my hotel room until after five in the morning. My wife wasn’t best pleased especially as I wrongly assumed that she would be so tired from our trip and the day that she would be asleep. She was worried that something happened to me and yes, I did have to do a lot of apologising that morning.
Why did I do it? Everyone says that that was completely out of character for me. Here’s my explanation which is not an attempted justification. On reflection, because of my worry about having no friends, I have been known to respond to anyone who shows the slightest hint of friendship towards me. Like so many times in my life, these people on the night offered their friendship and in my mind, I was so grateful of this that I had to take them up on it. Furthermore, wanting to be a good friend, I was willing to stay out to the wee hours of the morning, although I didn’t consume nearly as much alcohol as the gentleman who wanted to drink the town dry. When that guy paid my way into the one club, I thought it unfriendly to then go and leave, so I stayed even though I knew deep down it wasn’t the right thing to do.
Another related topic was that throughout my early life, bullies and others would exploit my desire for friends. They would have me do things for their amusement or that would get me in trouble. While, I didn’t engage in any such activity this night except for staying out late, nor do I think that those persons would do such things, it did happen in the past. I do touch on this in “He Was Weird.” When Mark is in sixth grade, many of his classmates use his desire for friends to make him a laughingstock and then a target.
I think that friendship is a mine field with many people who contend with Asperger’s Syndrome. Like me, they want friends but don’t always have the correct social reading skills to make friends correctly. The results of this can often times be disasterous. While I wouldn’t say that about this experience because that was quite positive, I can see the potential danger it can cause.
To buy He Was Weird, go to: https://www.amazon.co.uk/He-Was-Weird-Michael-Lefevre/dp/1909740942/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1472674930&sr=1-1&keywords=he+was+weird