The ISH is out to get you. You know the phrase: 'We'll be back at 7.30pm-ish'. And the 7.30pm becomes 9pm. Boundaries get stretched beyond their normal limits, stretched where they shouldn’t normally go. Waiting, in the cold and the dark in the car for our 8-year-old son to be delivered back from a school outing, with no telephone call to say they're so late and no apology when they finally arrive. The curse of the ISH is upon us.
Thank goodness I'm writing about this strange grey, cryptic, let’s-make-it-up-as-we-go-along curse that exists in the universe: well, in the human one, anyway; those (few) of us who think in ‘black and white’ all have to tolerate it, don’t we? No black and white being used here on this cold, dark evening; nice to spend an hour an a half in the car when we could be at home with a glass of wine, sitting by the fire.
Head teacher is in our thoughts as we sit there. The words of the ISH curse have come directly form her lips. It was she who told us that she herself would deliver our boy back at the agreed time; she would bring him back in her car herself. Well, not too wise to trust head teachers, I think, because when he finally arrives back, on a bus (a bus? Yes, a bus), the HT is nowhere to be seen. Waiting, in the cold and dark; waiting, waiting, waiting; tired, fed up, and cursing (and that’s just Anni, my wife). I’m freaking, meanwhile, trying hard not to, but it’s difficult when you’re left in the lurch and don’t know what’s going on. We didn’t realise the ISH would be so ISH, you see; perhaps we should have done.
Phrases come to mind, ‘I’m getting better-ish.’ – ‘I’m finished now-ish.’ How far can ISH stretch? It’s too common in society. But it can only be a curse, in reality, whose initials must surely mean: ‘I’m So Hard-arsed!’ In other words, I don’t really care about getting back at the agreed time. Why should I? And this woman knew I had Asperger’s syndrome and all.
Just as well the sun doesn’t behave like this. ‘I’ll rise at 6am tomorrow morning-ish.’ (But I might just add another couple of hours on to that because I it doesn’t matter if I come up at the said time). Would nature do this? Like hell she would. She has principles.
Just as well I’m writing about grey cryptic thinking in my next book. It’s nearly there. I’ll be glad when it finally is. Editing taking place as we speak – as I’m ranting about this. ‘My Signals: Autistic Reflections of a Man Who Thinks in Circles and Dreams Like a Stone.’ Well, it contains much food for thought - especially if you’re a black and white thinker who doesn’t much like the Curse of the ISH.
Perhaps I should see this ISH curse in the ancient Romani way, and fix a counter-spell; my ancestors would doubtless say ISH backwards to cancel it out. This would give us HSI, which might mean ‘Hold off the Severe Incompetence.’ Go and sort yourself out. The world’s far too full of ISH people, far too lacking in black and white people. Yes. Maybe a counter-curse would do the trick.
Tags: autism "asperger's syndrome" romani school.