Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Was The Grinch An Aspie?

Sit down this Christmas season and watch How the Grinch Stole Christmas (the 1966 cartoon…not the live action travesty) and look at the Grinch versus the Whos as an Aspie versus a town of NTs. It might give you some insight about people like me.

What was it the Grinch hated so much about the way the Whos down in Whoville celebrated Christmas? “All the noise, noise, noise, noise!” I feel you, Grinch. I do. Like so many Aspies, the Grinch prefers to be alone, living atop Mount Crumpet with only his dog for company. His need for quiet is overwhelming and the endless disruption of it drives him to a state of bitterness and hatred.

The narrator doesn’t get it. He tells us that the Grinch’s heart is two sizes too small…or that his head isn’t screwed on right. Naturally it’s all Mr. Grinch’s fault that he can’t conform to what the rest of Whovillian society expects.

I’m not saying it’s okay to try to destroy a holiday enjoyed by many, or that I agree in any way with how the Grinch deals with the situation. I’m just saying it doesn’t seem fair that things had to get so bad that he felt he had no other recourse. Why didn’t anyone see that he needed help?

Unlike the Grinch, I don’t hate Christmas. I don’t have a problem with the size of my heart. A Christmas morning Who song will not magically make me able to tolerate “All the noise, noise, noise, noise!”. The Grinch is not a perfect analogy. If he were truly an Aspie, no amount of heart growth would make him want to be smack in the middle of the Whoville Christmas festivities.

My point is simply this, before you judge someone who wants to be left alone or try to tell them that their intolerance of noise is just an overreaction, remember that it goes both ways. You enjoy your flu-flubas and tartinkas and I’ll take my plate of Who Pudding and Roast Beast over to this quiet corner and we’ll each enjoy Christmas our own way.

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