What happened to me :: Patrick’s story

by Patrick Ridge

My childhood, upon mature consideration, can best be described as catastrophic. I won’t go into the details, and I have heard of children less fortunate than myself, but catastrophic is an apt word taken all in all. The aspect which most stands out for me today is the way my experience was shaped by my borderline autistic condition, Aspergers Syndrome. I will refer to Aspergers as AS for the sake of brevity. For my purposes AS is best described by the phrase “standing behind the door when the instructions were passed out”. After some thirty years have gone by and I have developed some mental and emotional “tools” to compensate for my condition, I can specify a little better what the differences, the symptoms are that created this condition, but for a child of ages five through thirteen I was quite unclear on what was different about me. The effect was that everyone was behaving in a manner similar to each other, as though responding to cues that I was not receiving. Today I know that this is a form of brain damage, neural scarring that has eliminated certain parts of my perception enjoyed by most people. Those parts of my perception that are missing have to do with understanding social cues; the problem is thus reduced to its elemental form.

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Breathing, writing, and panicking in no particular order


long rambling and moderate panic to follow but i am okay now so please don’t call an ambulance 🙂 I will keep this whole post besides this disclaimer off the front page for that matter.

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Take meds or breathe?

Decisions, decisions. Where is the line between beneficial effects and intolerable side effects of medicine? I suppose it is different for everybody, but I am having a hard time placing it at the moment, or at least I was until I ended up in the emergency room on Tuesday.

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My current project, aspieland.com, is up for public testing. It will be a non-commercial site directory of sites by and for people on the autistic spectrum. The goal of this site is to focus on individual home pages and make it easier for us to find eachother on the web. Large community and resource sites …

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Railroad Museum Pix

Thanks to everyone who came out to the model railroad yesterday. I had fun and it was nice to meet those folks that I haven’t met before. I took some pictures on my phone, most of which needed to be photoshopped in some way or other, so please pardon the “art shots”! Click on the thumbnails to view larger images.

I never got around to resizing them to fit this site, so also please pardon the couple that are hiding behind the sidebar.

bridgepalace hotelstreet lights
power housetunnelvictorians

Scatchmonkey took some pictures with a real camera and put them up on his site too. Click here to see them. They are about 3/4 down the page.

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Meetup at Golden State Model Railroad Museum

It is official. Our first ‘Oakland Aspieland’ meetup will be on Sunday, December 4th at 1pm at the Golden State Model Railroad Museum. The trains will be running 🙂 Admission fees are: $3 for Adults $2 for Senior Citizens and Children under 12 $7 for Families If anybody needs or can give rides, let us …

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Me and K went to an aascend meeting on saturday before we left for morro bay. The topic of the meeting was disclosure. It is a topic I often wonder about. I have wondered about it since before I ever heard of asperger’s and was telling people that ‘my brain doesn’t work right’. I still tell them that sometimes. It is nice to finally have a word, but it hasn’t made it any easier to tell people like I thought it would.

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Donna Williams and some other like-minded folks have started a new website called Auties.org. “Auties.org is a website to promote the entrepreneurial (self employment) skills of people diagnosed on the Autistic Spectrum world-wide and to provide links to Autie-Friendly businesses of various kinds.” I particularly liked the ‘What is an Autism Spectrum Condition?’ explanation page. …

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