When not everyone is autistic

I was reading this book by Mark Haddon, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time. The protagonist is an autistic boy of fifteen with an amazing mind that's logical and superb with numbers. He however, is not adept at social interactions. He despises people touching him and he doesn't understand emotions. When in doubt, he crawls into a small, enclosed space and sits there in silence. With all his idiosyncrasies, it's hard for him to navigate through the real world. But once people know of his condition, they 'allow' him to behave that way, because he isn't posing any threat to anyone.

Why is it then, that if 'normal' people were to crawl into nooks and crannies, who detest being touched, and who would rather read books in room corners than mingle at parties are viewed as weird and socially unacceptable?

Some people rather use the treadmill at the edge of the gym because they hate people staring at them when they workout. Some people rather walk around malls while listening to their ipods because they feel secure when they don't have to interact with other people.

Not everyone goes out with the intention of meeting new people or to get lucky. Not everyone feels the urge to meet old friends every day and reminisce every night. Not everyone appreciates being picked up at the gas station or supermarket.

So why don't the rest of us loosen up and cut these people some slack once in awhile?

ps: I watched Cloverfield. SUPERB!!! The concept is one of a kind and I totally loved it. Seeing through first person perspective makes the whole thing scarier. However, not everyone could appreciate it. They wanted answers and explanations but I was content with the ending.


@ Saturday, January 19, 2008 12:54 AM

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