Friday, 17 February 2012
"Let me win, but if I cannot win, let me be brave in the attempt."
That's the oath (motto?) of the Special Olympics. Or at least it was. Go on their website, and it's not there. So maybe it's not the oath (motto?) anymore. But it was. I have to say there is something that doesn't sit too well with ole' JJ about that oath (motto?).
I mean, doesn't it sound a little "ohhh, you're disabled! That's so terrible! But you are trying to do this sport anyways! You're so brave! Brings tears to my eyes that you can even get out of bed, you poor thing!" Condescending, I guess.
Maybe they thought so too. Maybe that's why its not on their website. I dunno.
Not that I am not all for the special olympics! I think its great! Its just the motto!
So G-man had his school's "Winter Concert" a couple of weeks ago. Why not beofre Xmas/Hanukhah? I dunno. Can only speculate that because his school is close to Chinatown (well, one Chinatown) that those holidays have a little less signifigance? I dunno. Who cares.
His class and the school's other autism spectrum class were set to perform together.
G-man's class is all boys. Why? Autism and Asperger's hits males harder. Why? Just the way it goes, so I am told. But what a cast of characters. I love these guys. G-man's birthday was a few weeks ago, and almost all of his class mates came to his party. Had to answer lots of direct questions, such as how old I am, and Janelle got a tongue lashing for not asking permission to load one of the guest's Wii games that the guest brought over, but wouldn't change a thing.
For their performance, they weren't going to sing any songs. Instead, it turned out they were going to do a dance routine. When I found out, I guess maybe I was a little "ohhh, you don't think these guys are able to sing a song?" (Because those dudes could have totally sung a freaking song. They could rock a song!) And I was a little ticked. Maybe. I dunno. Wasn't sure. But didn't make a stink.
The night of the concert. Still wasn't sure how I felt. But of course I am going to come see it! My boy, performing!
I get there. Meet Janelle and boys. Comes time for he and his mates to go up. The beat starts. They start their routine. After a bit the crowd starts clapping along.
A part of me (To my discredit? I guess? Maybe?) is thinking "Oh, is the crowd clapping because they know its the Autism Spectrum class and they think these guys are just being 'brave in the attempt'?" "Those condescending mother effers..."
But two seconds later all I am thinking of is how blown away and proud I am of G-man. And his class mates. Just blew me away. I loved it. The innocence and joy. Was part of it some sort of subconscious 'brave in the attempt' feeling? I hope not. That would kind of wreck things. But I don't think so!
And with respect to Gabe's performance? I know most of the folks who may read this are parents. Is there anything like watchin your child perform publicly? (And by the way he was the best. Just saying. Ha ha. Parent bias!) I can't even put into words. When it was over, I went up to him, picked him up in my arms and swung him around. Like once. (It's not that easy to do now, as he is one big boy these days.) But couldn't help it.
Maybe its indulgent to put the video on here. Probably. But it is my freaking blog after all. And I aint's gots no sponsors I need to kowtow to... So I suppose I can post whatever I wanna post. So here it is. You can watch or not. JJ's good either way. Ok? Are we still cool? Yeah? Ok then. And yes it's choppy. I recorded on my blackberry. And who am I anyways, Steven Speilbergo? Exactly. I am not.
And by the way, G-man is the handsome fella wearing the black-striped shirt.
JJ (and the Peas) out!