It’s been an exciting and at times strange couple of months in John’s world . Firstly there have been weeks, nay months of eager anticipation for the visit of the Three Queens to Liverpool. Those of you who know John will already have discovered that he can’t pronounce words like ‘Green’ or ‘Queen’. The letter G sounds like a Q and any word which ends in ‘N’ ……he substitutes it for the letter R….. therefore it all sounds very un PC.
If you haven’t already, and before you report us both for being homophobic please take a quick look at the ‘About’ section in the menu and it will explain it all. Autism is extremely un PC. John says what he sees and tells it like it is, in the unmistakable language of ‘Johnelmo Speak’
John has been madly in love with The Queer Mary 2 for the past year and has looked forward to seeing her and her two sisters with ever mounting excitement. He has been regularly getting me in loving headlocks on Saturday mornings, presumably incase I tried to make a run for it, and dragging me to the end of the road, over the little queer and onto the prom. Yes you have guessed it, there is a little ‘Green’ at the end of the road separating the houses from the promenade.
John would then stand with my head under his armpit, pointing theatrically towards the Irish Sea and shouting ‘Queer Mary. Libubub. Maaaaay. Yes! OK!’ Followed by a well choreographed bout of head and thigh slapping whilst still keeping a firm grip on me. I tried to balance John’s mispronunciation so that every time he shouted ‘Queer’ I yelled ‘Queen’ thereby letting the good folk of Meols know that Queer Queen Mary would be visiting Liverpool in May
He did mention Elizabeth and Victoria too but honestly the two names sounded nothing like what they should sound like and I think passers by thought he was yodelling whilst trying to strangle his poor mother. I hoped my waving and smiling reassured them.
Finally the great weekend arrived and John was up at the crack of door, he can’t pronounce dawn either. He wanted to get an early start and the best view. He went with his favourite support workers and had the most wonderful time. He shot hours of camcorder footage and his voice can clearly be heard above all the deafening music, thousands of chattering people and the tooting of ships horns, as he jumped up and down waving and calling to his beloved Mary, and the other two which he can’t pronounce.
He is now looking forward to them all popping back to see him next year…….not sure how we are going to explain that one to him.
A couple of weeks after the Three Queens Visit, John was upstairs looking at photos on the computer and laughing helplessly. That’s nothing new as he is nearly always laughing so I didn’t pay much attention, although it did go on for a while. There was lots running in and out of his room and slamming of doors accompanied by John squealing and snorting with glee. During one particular raucous session he shouted me, ‘Up mummy up peas, now’. He was bouncing and spinning around the computer room on the wheelie chair and pointing to the screen and the keyboard. I waited for him to explain what he wanted me to do. Usually he either wants a song on YouTube or words putting into the search engine. He does really well to communicate and is always very patient as I try ever so hard to guess what some of his more obscure requests are. This was a particularly difficult word to fathom. It began with a T, possibly followed by a W or was it a U? a couple of dodgy ones in the middle but it definitely ended in an A or a Y or did it?
John tried many times, gurning and smacking his lips trying to pronounce the word. It tickled him as I tried in vain to guess what he wanted and he guffawed loudly at my pathetic attempts. ‘Is it Train John?’ He shook his head, hand over his mouth to stifle a snort. Maybe it didn’t start with a T, ‘Does it start with T John?’ I asked him, laughing with him at this lovely exchange. He nodded, bounced and clapped. ‘No Thee’ he said unhelpfully. ‘Oh right, so can you just say the first letter of the word you want to tell me’ I asked hopefully. ‘Thee’ said John nodding furiously. ‘ But you just said it isn’t T, make your mind up’ I sneaked a sly kiss onto his cheek while he thought about it. ‘Yes Thee no’ he replied licking my cheek in return.
At times like this it’s better to see if he can find a picture in one of his books or in his pile of photographs which will help us work out what he wants me to search google for. So I asked him if there was anything he could find that would help me understand. He thought about it, roared laughing, nodded and took me into his bedroom. He sat on his bed with his hands over his eyes rocking back and forth, the way he does when he is too excited to look at something. After a few more moments of hysteria he opened his eyes and his bedside draw where he keeps his underwear and rummaged around in the multicoloured selection of underpants. He looked puzzled, I was equally as puzzled as he has never asked me to Google underpants before, and the word he was trying to say wasn’t anything like ‘Underpants’. Having said that, regular readers will know that the rule doesn’t always apply. Take ‘Oi Oi Ig’ for instance…..John speak for ‘Caernarfon’ where incidentally we are going very soon for his annual holiday and which John calls…. Abersoch…..see it makes no sense at all does it.
Anyway I digress, back to rummaging around in his underwear, so to speak. The only other items he keeps in his underwear drawer are his glasses , he pops them in there when he is in bed and ready to sleep, but he had them on so it couldn’t be them. Finally after taking all the underpants out he found what he was looking for. Upside down in the palm of his hand was a snail. A large garden snail, slightly traumatised but very much alive. John took me and the snail into the computer room, pointed to the Google logo and said ‘Pickies’. Slightly puzzled and keeping one eye on John incase he hid it somewhere else, I obliged by typing in Snail and selecting ‘Images’. Immediately John and his new pet were joined on screen by several hundred of its relatives.
I had to bribe John with an extra large slice of cake in return for him handing the snail over. It’s all still a complete mystery, not only where did he get it from in the first place but how long had it been in his undies drawer. Eiw!