Sunday, 28 February 2010

Bring back the Rock and Roll years

I know there are issues with broadcasting, and copyrights, but I think it is time the BBC brought out a Rock n Roll years series for the nineties and naughties. The last time this programme was shown on TV was one for the 1980's - between Wednesday
2nd March 1994 and Wednesday 27th April 1994. The rock stars have more money than what they need, so what does it matter to them? It is better than programmes with loads of talking heads on. Who cares what some z-list celebrity thought to chopper bikes in the 1970's or BMX's in the 1980's?

Here are some shows of the Rock and Roll years... for...

1976 (The year I was born - on 20th August at 10.05am).

1978 (The year one of my regular blog comment makers was born)



Book shops

I hear that Readers Digest has gone into Administration. Let's hope someone rescues it and that it doesn't go the way of Borders. I miss Borders, I hope that Waterstones isn't going to go down the same road as well.

Sunday, 21 February 2010

Why it is wrong to reclassify Autism and AS

People often wonder how to classify Asperger's Syndrome. Many people argue that it is part of the Autistic Spectrum. Others argue that it is a distinct condition in its own right. I personally agree with the former argument. However, there a few slight, but still substantial differences between Asperger's Autism, which I have, and Kanner's Autism, which I don't have. That is why I didn't agree with the proposal regarding the next edition of the DSM (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders) when it is due to be published in May 2013.

Baffled? They are considering listing Asperger's simply as Autism. The present Autistic Spectrum Conditions is the most appropriate and suitable way of describing this condition. Do you think that an Aspie who is capable of going to university with the correct support is the same as an Autistic person who can't talk, rocks, and flaps his/her hands? Do you think that their care needs are the same? Of course they aren't. They ought to get rid of the triad of impairments, in that Aspies and Autistics don't have an imagination, and replace it with problems in interaction, communication, being hypo or hypersensitive to touch, sound and taste, routines and obsessions, difficulties with fine or gross motor skill problems.

That said, I believe there must be much more awareness and provisions for Autism and AS, in schools, colleges, university, employment and society in general, and it must start NOW!

Talking about Asperger's or Autism. I believe that both are a disability, but society makes it more so because the world in its present state is generally hostile to Aspies or anyone who is deemed or perceived to be different... and when society won't make provisions or reasonable adjustments for Aspies... then it will be even more of a disability than what it presently is.

One or two have even claimed that AS and Autism are "fashionable" conditions to claim to have. I can assure you that being hypo or hypersensitive to touch, sound, and taste and not being able to filter these stimuli out, having obsessions and routines, finding it difficult to interact with other people, struggling to read other people's body language, having fine or gross motor skill problems, and being misunderstood and often isolated is not trendy! No-one chooses to be Autistic, and besides... I have had AS all my life, so that hardly constitutes a trend!

I also take the view that if anyone has ever insulted, done wrong to, or taken the mickey out of me, a man with Asperger's, in a nasty way, from the day I started school to now, in the last 20-odd years, it doesn't say anything about me, but it speaks volumes about them, and the conclusion which has to be drawn is that such individuals aren't worth knowing and that we are better off without them.

Friday, 12 February 2010

What is weird today is conventional tomorrow

During my life, I have been called both odd and weird many times, on several different occasions. According to the triad of impairments, people with Autism and Asperger's Syndrome are supposed to not have an imagination, according to the triad of impairments. I would argue it is people who call those with Autism and AS weird who don't have an imagination, as they are demonstrating a fear and ignorance of the unknown or different. It is they who are shutting their minds off, not those with Autism/AS.

What or who was weird or odd in opinions or lifestyle choices in February 1990, or February 1970 or February 1950 or February 1910 is conventional today, and similarly, what or who is odd or weird today could turn out to be conventional by February 2030....

It was once believed that the Earth was flat, that the Sun went around the Earth (The Roman Candle Church imprisoned Galileo for saying that). Before Newton discovered gravity people just thought heavy objects fell heavier than others. Homosexuality was a criminal offence in the UK until 1967 and for some years afterwards was viewed as a mental illness. It is now accepted.

In the 1950's and early 1960's free-market economics were viewed as eccentric and extreme. However, they became government policy in the 1980's. It was once widely believed that Autism was caused by ones upbringing. Apartheid looked as it if was here to stay forever in 1970 in South Africa. There's little chance of it returning today. In 1950 there was segregation in the deep south of the USA. No-one would seriously try to bring it back now.

In 1956 Rock n Roll was seen as dangerous and revolutionary... yet within a few years as mainstream and later even old-fashioned. In January 1977 Mick Jones out of the Clash said "We want no Elvis, Beatles or Rolling Stones in 1977". Thirty years ago, the idea of civil partnerships would have caused outrage amongst most people, but now they are accepted.

Tuesday, 9 February 2010

Be grateful for the NHS - it meant I could blog here quicker otherwise

In life, I usually find that procrastination is my worst enemy... when I work at something and set my mind to it, I usually achieve it, whether it is quickly or slowly, but the problem is with me often, getting down to do it... I always get distracted or put it off.

However, from the 29th January, procrastination didn't come into it. That day, I was walking down a flight of steps. Nothing unusual or remarkable about that you might ask. No, nothing at all, apart from the fact that I slipped. I wasn't drunk either. I was as sober as I am now. Being right-handed, I put my right-arm out and my body weight went onto my right-hand. I didn't feel anything at the time, apart from stupid, and I got up and carried on, thinking little about it.

On Friday night though, it started to hurt, and my right-hand went very sore and stiff. Throughout Saturday I found it painful to grip or to hold things, and in fact, I couldn't write and had great difficulty in typing. By Sunday morning my right hand was twice the size of my left-hand. Therefore, I decided to go to hospital.

At the hospital, I was waiting about an hour and I had an x-ray. A pot was put on and I was told that I would learn the results on Friday morning. The consultant told me that I could have broken my Scaphoid bone in my wrist. David Beckham, the former Manchester United and England player, sustained the same injury in 2003. However, I was told that I could have sprained my wrist. I sprained my wrist way back in July 1990, and it was painful then.

During Monday and Tuesday, I was in a considerable amount of pain. I could write but my handwriting was not up to the standard that it usually is. Getting a shower was difficult as well. I washed my hair, then the lower half of my body, without getting the pot wet. Gradually, the pain subsided.

On Friday morning, the consultant informed me that I hadn't broke anything in my right wrist, but instead, have sprained it and sustained severe internal bruising. I was given a splint to wear for a week, but yesterday I decided to stop wearing it. My wrist is almost back to normal now, but is still stiff and sore, particularly if I lay on it in bed. However, it is 70% back to normal.

I would also like to thank the NHS. It has its critics, but all I can say is that it served me fine whenever I have had to use it, and I will continue to use it, whether I become a multi-millionaire or a pauper. Private health care might mean that the user is able to jump queues when seeking treatment, but it is exclusive. It benefits only those who can afford it. For those who can't afford it, tough.....

Seeing as my right arm is now potted up, I might wear a hooded top, run up and down steps, jabbing at thin air, whilst singing the rocky theme tune....I slipped walking down some stairs on Friday... and as I fell, I put my right hand out.. and went on it.... I didn't feel anything at the time, apart from stupid..... However, it began to hurt on Friday evening.... and I began not to be able to move it.... Then... I was out Saturday night and it had swollen... I decided to go to the yesterday morning....

Sunday, 7 February 2010

John Terry is no politician or preacher

Last week, John Terry, the captain of both Chelsea and England football teams, was in the newspapers for his affair with Vanessa Perroncel, the former girlfriend of Wayne Bridge, the Manchester City defender. Terry is married with twins. Bridge was once a close friend of Terry's, but I presume he isn't now. However, Terry's affair with Vanessa Perroncel only started after she had split with Bridge. Chelsea play at Stamford Bridge, so whilst Terry is popular with one bridge.... he isn't with another... I am sure he will cross that bridge when he comes to it!

My view is that whilst Terry undoubtedly has been a shit off the field, I can't see why or how it affects his ability as both a footballer or as England captain. It is not as if he's a politician, telling everybody he is a kinda straight guy, or telling us all to get back to basics, or posing at a garden gate with a wife and two kids smiling, banging on about family values and attacking homosexuals and single parents, whilst sleeping with his secretary, or researcher (Male/female) or going with prostitutes or having sex with a sheep is it? He hasn't been preaching to us on making cutbacks, attacking people on benefits or benefit fraud, whilst taking money in brown envelopes from Harrods owners for asking questions in Parliament, or claming for non-existent mortgages, or moat repairs.

They dropped him because he apparently is a role model to children. He hasn't beaten up his wife, he hasn't done drugs, he hasn't raped anybody and he hasn't been downloading child pornography, yet given the media coverage, you would think so. It remainds me of how Jonathan Ross and Russell Brand, who again, did wrong and were out of order, were crucified out of proportion for their offence, by the tabloids, in the "Sachsgate" scandal of October 2008. I had a daft thought that the front of the Sun proclaimed "EXCLUSIVE: JOHN TERRY ATE MY CHILDREN"

Talking of politics, I have heard a rumour that Gordon Brown and David Cameron are both writing to John Terry to thank him for becoming the focus of news last week, and for removing their problems and struggles from the media spotlight... I have also heard they have wrote to Capello, suggesting he has an affair so it can carry on!

The logic of the management of the England football team was shown by their decision to drop John Terry because he is no role model to children.... and they pick Rio Ferdinand to take his place.. presumably on the proviso that he is. This is the same Rio Ferdinand who has been done for drunk driving and speeding... Terry couldn't have killed anyone by what he did.. Ferdinand could have... it's a funny old game, as Mr James Greaves would tell us.

Saturday, 6 February 2010

Who researches this drivel and why?

Looking on the BBC 1 teletext news today, I saw the following item.... "People who own a cat are more likely to have a university degree than people who own a dog"..... I know I am a facts, figures and statistics man myself, and often come out with obscure facts, but I can't see the relevance or significance in this. WHO COMES UP WITH THIS DRIVEL AND WHY DO WE NEED TO KNOW? and this was from a serious news channel.... The only relevance I can see in it is that it was a study into cats and dogs, to see that cats can be left longer at home than dogs...