Just some thoughts and ideas going around in my head while trying to figure out where I am and where everyone else is going.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Black History Month Revisited

Let me tell you about one moment in Black history.

I saw Temple Grandin the other day on HBO and just like the old days when they used to have the movie and disease of the week I have found something else that is wrong with me, I am autistic. There were just so many things in the movie that I could relate to. The ability to think in pictures rather than words, my confusion when I’m faced by noise and lots of visual stimulation that I’m not used to, my aversion to being touched by strangers unless I have that lonely night agenda thing going which we won’t go into here, all point to autism but without the genius thing.

I should make an appointment with my doctor for tests, but he would probably laugh at me again. Bitch! I hate HMO doctors.

What does any of this have to do with Black History Month? Nothing, but speaking of doctors and HBO I'm reminded of that other cable movie Something the Lord Made with Mos Def when he played the heart surgery pioneer Vivien Thomas. Even though Thomas had never attended medical school as a lab technician for the Johns Hopkins surgeon Dr. Alfred Blaylock had developed a surgical technique for improving the circulation of blood for patients with Blue Baby Syndrome. This was one of the names given to children, whose blood bypassed the lungs leaving them oxygen deprived with a blue pallor and was often fatal.
Thomas developed a technique where he was able to attach arteries from the heart to the lungs and therefore increase the amount oxygen and hence the lifespan of the child. But more than this, he developed a suture style where the scar tissue would be able to expand and grow as the patient and as he or her organs did. I bring this up only because I may have benefitted by his procedures.
When I was 14 days old, it was discovered that I was unable to digest any food because of a blockage somewhere in my digestive tract. In the old days, say Leonidas and the Spartans, they would have just thrown me out the back one night and let the wolves have at me, but instead I was operated on leaving a horizontal scar on my abdomen 2 stitches long. I know that because you can still see the marks where the needle entered the skin.

As I’ve grown, that 2 stitch scar has grown with me and is now about 4 inches long and I really have no problem with it unless someone points it out to me or I sneeze really energetically. You see when I sneeze, I contract my abs and if it’s really stressful the muscle will bulge below the scar and feel as if I’m being ripped apart about the midsection. Anyway, I don’t know how true it is but I think I may owe Vivien Thomas, among others, my life.

And that has been one moment in Black history.


  1. Wow. Thanks for the Black History fact and great truths. I'm glad that you were able to benefit from this as well as we have all benefited from the great advancement.

  2. I am sure you said something very insightful about black history, but I will not lie. I laughed my ass off during the first paragraph and didn't get any further because I am autitic also with the same lonley night and non genius exceptions. Hmmmm.., I think you might be onto something. let me know what your doctro said. I'm gonna finish reading your post, but I'm going to keep that autistic thing in mind. I think you are onto something...

  3. Yes I was right... I loved the movie What the Lord Made and I'm glad for Dr. Thomas if for no other reason than because of him I get to read what you write. It would have been a waste to leave you for the wolves. Thanks Dr. Thomas!

  4. What would we hve done without you? So glad you pulled through!

  5. "my aversion to being touched by strangers unless I have that lonely night agenda thing going"


    "In the old days, say Leonidas and the Spartans, they would have just thrown me out the back one night and let the wolves have at me"


    You are too much! I Love It!!

  6. Thanks to Viven Thomas and others you are still among the land of the living, and or that we are all grateful.

    You may very well have Autism, and believe me you have the genius that is closely associated with Autism so no worries man and no visits to the HMO doctors.

    Our people have made great contributions. Thanks for sharing this piece with your readers.

  7. Eduardo - I'm sure there a few who wouldn't be so grateful.

    ♫Hershey's Kiss♫ - There are many people who have benefited from the achievements of those who came before us and take for granted. I just thought it was time to recognize at least one person whom I may have benefited from.

    ingrid - Don't be putting down my wolves now, they do a very great public service by getting rid of weak and sick. In fact I believe if we still had wolves in NJ, I would have to worry about getting dear ticks in the summer each I walked in the back yard.

    DJ - How many different names do you go by? Anyway, if I hadn't have pulled through you would have found someone else to read, or laugh at, or scorn because as much as we are all different, we are all pretty much the same. That's one of beauties of being part of the human race.

    Toy - Now I know I'm not the only one who like to guard his own personal space and as far as the other part goes, that's just facts. Actually, I think they still do that in parts of China if you are born a girl instead of boy and they practice that one child per family thing.

    Chet - Oh Chet, you are starting to make me feel like Dustin Hoffman in "Rainman" and wishing Judge Wapner was still on, lol.

  8. *raising hand* Me too...autistic that is. Even though I only have one symptom...I think. Confusion at noise and visual stimulation. I tend to just tune it all out and go into my own world. Then again, I do that when I am bored with someones conversation as well. Ohsie wellsie.

    Yes, thank the lord for Vivien...these past 3 years would have been horrid without my gay crush...just sayin'.
    *and once again, I've made this comment all about me, sigh*

  9. BBB - You know it's supposed to be all about you, why are you frontin? I already know about me, or at least most of it. I want to know about you and how you relate to, or feel about what I said. I want to know if you think its all BS or if you're saying, "I know what you mean because Blah, Blah, Blah...


Did you like or dislike what you just read? Go ahead, tell me why. All comments are welcome here, good or bad let's both open up and discuss our differences or our similarities.


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