July 30th, 2006

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I gave up, so I will never know

This started out as a comment to an LJ friend's post about the Aspergers questionnaire, but it grew.

Um... What does it mean when you give up half way through the quiz because you're finding the questions unanswerable? There were too many "or" questions where I could say "yes" to one half but a definite "no" to the other. For instance the one about "Do you collect things, like arranging objects or making lists and diagrams?" I really have no interest in collecting things, I don't arrange them and never have, but I'm incessantly making lists and like to diagram things if possible, including novels. To me they don't go together. The urge to collect and the urge to try to bring order to one's life by listing what needs to be done are not the same.

And this might sound stupid, but I don't know what my eye colour is. Also there was the bit about squinting. Well I have a squint, always have had, but it's corrected by glasses. So do I squint or don't I? It's a purely physical thing. Also my poor eyesight in my right eye means that I don't have binocular vision and can't judge heights and distances as well as others, though I've learned ways to compensate.

Some examples of questions I found impossible to answer:

1. Do you notice small sounds that others don't... I don't think so. But what do you mean by "notice"? I often notice a sound, analyse it, realise what it is and then ignore it from then on if it's harmless. So how do I know whether others have noticed it or not? I showed no sign of having noticed it, if it didn't merit a comment. Presumably others may have noticed too but decided not to comment too.

...and feel pained by loud or irritating noise? Yes, doesn't everyone?

6. Do you blink or roll your eyes? Perhaps I'm being stupid here, but everyone blinks. How can I say I don't blink? But I don't roll my eyes, except when doing it as a deliberate, "Oh, God, here we go again!" sort of expression. So I do sometimes roll my eyes, but do they mean involuntarily?

56. Do you feel stress, panic or have a brain malfunction in unfamiliar or demanding situations? How unfamiliar and how demanding? Stress and even panic are natural in stressful situations. For example, I definitely felt stressed when stuck at O'Hare airport, delayed for over an hour. I had never travelled so far before and I was alone and tired. But I didn't panic or have a "brain malfunction". So do I answer "yes" or "no". Some precise examples of situations would be good here to show what the researcher means by "unfamiliar and demanding".

So I just gave up.

Am I being over analytical of the questions?
  • Current Mood
    thoughtful procrastinating
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What colour are your eyes?

After failing to answer the simple question about eye colour in the questionnaire this morning, I decided to do some Googling to answer the question that has been bugging me for years.

What colour are my eyes exactly?

It seems such a simple question. We writers assign eye colours to characters all the time, but I have never really been able to say what colour my own eyes are. Or at least not by means of a one-word answer such as "blue" or "brown". The best I have been able to come up with is something like: blue-grey with amber and brown flecks, can look green in certain lights.

Which it seems is about as good as it's going to get. There really isn't a one word description for it.

According to Wikipedia, the closest is blue-green. (Scroll down to find the description.)

To understand my problem fully, Collapse )
  • Current Mood
    curious curious
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The W currently not really IP

I think it's Brenda Clough in rasfc who uses the metaphor of a boa constrictor for a story in the early stages. She reckons that if you can pin down its head and its tail, it then becomes easy to gradually wrestle the rest into submission. Well, that isn't quite my problem. I know how it starts and I know how it ends and I have at least a vague idea of what happens in between, but I haven't yet managed to make any progress with actually writing the thing.

Revealing Secrets was supposed to be funny. A light-hearted romp through the British Further
Education system, that's what I'd planned. But it's demanding Lyrical Passages also Dark and Genuinely Scary Bits. I think this might be why it's sulking and refusing to progress. There's a tussle of wills going on here. Eventually the story will win, but until I get the overall tone right, I can't do anything with the beginning.