Adventures in Autistic Parenthood

Saturday, August 29, 2009

New Rides and Old Problems:

Dude sometimes has a difficult time with letting go of old things. Doesn't matter what it is, he just won't let it go. Games, game systems, favorite foods. You name it, if Dave likes it he keeps it. Cars are no exception. We had two; The Blazer and the venerable Mothership- a 92 Caprice Classic that has given good service for many years.

Most of you don't know that the Blazer is no more. A vicious Pittsburgh pothole ate it up recently. Seriously, a wheel dropped into a hole on the shoulder and flipped it over totalling it. The important thing is that Raine is ok. (a cut on her arm and much whining later and she's back to normal) Less important, but still nice is the fact that we had full coverage on the Suburban Assault Vehicle and only two payments left. Using the opportunity we decided to retire the Mothership and get a newer-used car for back and forth to work and let the bank buy us a newer car for our primary transportation. Which brought up a quandary. The 6 cylinder, '99 Blazer was on the CARS list, while the '92, 8 cylinder Caprice was not. (Your Tax Dollars put to work by some of the Finest Minds in the country) The problem, as far as Dude was concerned, is that he kept waiting for the SAV to come home. Every time we saw a green Blazer in a parking lot (about every other minute it seemed) he was clamoring to 'get in the truck'. Well, a vehicle search takes some time and it was two weeks before we found a used vehicle. Which meant for Dave, two weeks of driving around to Car Lots instead of Game Stores. Any shopping that doesn't have the words 'game' or 'cheese' or 'burger' in it just isn't Dude's cup of tea. That's a polite way to say that he'd rather have his head lit on fire and have it put out with a sledgehammer. So driving around in the Mothership to far flung lots in the sun to look at cars that weren't his wasn't his idea of a fun experience. So if we heard, 'So this is what a Chick feels like' and 'Got to go to the Wendy's store' rather more often than usual from the back seat we mostly understood.

Enter Bonnie-Ruadh (Gaelic for Good-Red) a flawless dark maroon 97 Bonneville with all the trimmings. I'm not sure how he understood when the Bonnie actually became 'ours' (his) but once the exit from the Notary's office occurred he was ready for his first ride. And once the dashboard lit up red instead of green he was fascinated. He somehow managed to make his seat belt stretch enough so that his head was between the front seats. Telling him to 'sit back' (approximately 43 times in the first half hour) didn't have any effect at all. He was talking a mile a minute and trying to see everything at once AND stick his hand out the sun roof. He also seemed a bit upset with Raine for sitting in 'his seat'. She looked back during one lull in the stream of conversation to find Dude staring back at her with a sour, pursed-lip expression on his face. Although he hammed it up when she pointed the camera in his direction it was obvious there was going to be.... trouble. The next day we picked up Raine at work and as she was walking out of her workplace Dave (seated in the front passenger seat) locked the door as she crossed the parking lot, scooched over toward the center console and gave her his best 'I'm not moving chick' stubborn look. Dude's a wily combatant but I thought he was fighting out of his class this time. Needless to say, Dude lost that argument and had to return to the backseat and grumble all the way home. We've also purchased a G6 for our primary car. Dave seems to think it's 'nice, but it obviously doesn't hold a patch to 'his' Bonnie. Although he seems to have appointed himself moon-roof cover attendant for both vehicles. Whenever we're out in either car he makes sure the solid inside cover for the moon roof is properly closed and secured when we return home. Anyone else reaching for it hears 'I'll get that' from whatever corner of the car Dude currently occupies.

Dave started school last week and we were both in for a shock. NEW TEACHERS!! No matter how often we correspond or how many times I call or visit it generally takes me until Easter to keep the names straight, even though the teachers at New Horizons send out a little Home Room form letter home on the first day with all the info I'll ever need on it. (some parents just can't be taught)

I'd like to take this opportunity to wish Ms. Yarosz (teacher) and Mrs. Cusano (temp aid) and Mrs. Detwiler (when she returns) the best of luck with David and his somewhat absentminded father. I've already got a note asking me to call and orient her with Dude's likes and dislikes and whatever other information the pentathol will force me to disclose. It gets a little tiring doing this every year four or five times a year. Every time David gets a new anything person I have to go and give them the Dude-lecture. Don't get me wrong, I love talking about him to people that not only actually listen, but also use this information to help David in whatever facet of his life that they effect. But sometimes I just want to get a DVD made like those self-help lecture guys and make them pay me a couple of bucks for the vid every time I need to answer the same questions to a new audience.

Oh, and for those of you who follow Dude's Game Extortion Efforts, he's already brought a weeks worth of 'good notes' home and we've already made the Grand Pilgrimage to the GameStop. He was so excited he almost forgot to talk (almost) except to say 'Go to the GameStop on Sunday!". And as we were walking down the sidewalk he informed Raine, "If you need me, you can call me at the Game Store!". I was laughing so hard I had to go back inside and sit down for a few moments, earning me a 'C'mon Dad! GameStop on Sunday!'. I figured I'd better get going before he decided to take matters (and the steering wheel) into his own hands.

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