The Rose is a literal kind of a gal. As with most Aspies a great deal of banter goes over her head and she doesn’t always get the irony. The Rose needs to know exactly what’s what … and at what time and just how – exactly?
Nothing unusual there of course, but the truth is she’s funny and she loves the effect she has on people. She likes to make them laugh – she just doesn’t always know quite how this happens – but when she’s not stressing or obsessing The Rose laughs really easily too.
She used to love prawns. In fact of all her narrow food preferences prawns were practically her only sauce of protein, but last year she stopped eating them. No warning. No explanation. She just declared them ‘disgusting’ and turned down point blank her favourite dish of Thai prawn curry. Never to eat it again.
We didn’t question this. We long ago accepted her irrational dogma, even though this new decision now reduced her ‘menu’ by about 30%
Then one day when we were all having dinner – The Rose with her chicken curry, the rest of us with prawn, I noticed she seemed really agitated. Fuming actually – so much so that she eventually errupted with:
“I don’t know how you can eat that filth” (OK ‘filth’ wasn’t exactly the word that she used)
“You used to love it” I said by way of pointless explanation
“Ah god Mum it’s disgusting I don’t know how you do it. I can’t look at the bowl. I feel sick”
“It’s just a fish” I limply responded.
“Well I don’t know how they get there anyway”
At this point I got a bit lost in her thread and because I could see she was seething building up to a huge head of volcanic anger, we quickly changed the subject. She remained silent, furiously ‘scribbling’ wringing her hands (stimming -The Rose stylie) with her lips pressed together in a white, hard, furious line.
Towards the end of the meal, with the prospect of ice cream looming she visibly relaxed and I chanced a question.
“What is it about prawns you don’t like now Rose?”
“That you catch them when you have sex Mum. That’s disgusting”
I guess one shellfish is much like another. Prawns? Crabs? What’s the difference?
And guess who laughed the hardest when the misunderstanding was revealed? Never underestimate an Aspie’s capacity for helpless mirth and self deprecation.
Now prawns are back on the menu I’m just waiting now for the one about Fish Fingers!