Apparently, most women think their husbands have Asperger’s when they first learn of its symptoms. In one woman’s case, as told on This American Life, her husband actually did have the syndrome. He began to keep a “Journal of Best Practices,” a characteristically compulsive coping mechanism for overcoming his social limitations. At one point in the story, he reflected: “It’s more intellect than it is raw feeling/empathy and emotional response.” I nodded along, having myself given mindful, but not heartfelt, sympathy. I wondered, does it feel just as good to receive. According to his wife, it simply felt better than no empathy at all.
No. I told and was told about last night. The fire alarm went off. I made a forlorn rainy day playlist and teared up in bed. I got a package with only what can be described as moon booties. We all got dressed and made up to do what friends do with each other - have fun. We clicked left on each other’s most recently tagged picture. We watched 500 Days of Summer.
Most days of the year are unremarkable. They begin, and they end, with no lasting memories made in between. Most days have no impact on the course of a life.
The first part of that quote I can certainly agree with, especially given that recently, I have granted myself the pleasures of a neglectful life. The last part I disagree with because regardless or whether today or any day was memorable, it has impacted my life.
That was a memorable day to me, for it made great changes in me. But, it is the same with any life. Imagine one selected day struck out of it, and think how different its course would have been. Pause you who read this, and think for a moment of the long chain of iron or gold, of thorns or flowers, that would never have bound you, but for the formation of the first link on one memorable day.
- Great Expectations
— Nathan Englander’s Fresh Air interview
— “The Hidden Dimension”