Life Lessons

Last weekend, Steve and I went to Manhattan to see Plaza Suite with Matthew Broderick and Sarah Jessica Parker. Delayed by two years by the pandemic, we were very excited to finally use our tickets from May 2020. We left Ian alone for most of the day, though my folks and sister came over to bring him dinner. We rarely leave Ian alone, because of the epilepsy and because he has no friends and is completely isolated without us, so this was a nice break for Steve and myself, and probably a nice break for Ian, as well. 

The next day, Steve discovered a suspicious screwdriver on his desk. After some questioning of Ian, we pieced together an interesting story. 

Ian explained that he watched a video on YouTube about how to expand the capacity of a PC. So, he went down the basement, where we have a pile of old computers that really need to go to the dump. In the Computer Graveyard, he removed a hard drive and a disk drive from a ten-year old PC and then installed them in Steve’s new computer on his desk. Proudly, Ian added that he dusted the inside of the computer. Then he did some clicking and clacking and showed the computer how to recognize the new devices.

More on my special education newsletter, The Great Leap.

7 thoughts on “Life Lessons

  1. I keep giggling about this, both the involuntarily upgraded computer and the monkey sweater. I feel like the irish sweater deserves an entire monkey for display (a stuffie, not a real one, which would be unfair to the monkey).

    It’s good that Ian likes rules, as long as they are clear. I also like rules.


    1. Waahhhh. I loved my monkey sweater. Weirdly, it didn’t shrink uniformly. The arms shrunk less than the body, so it really would only fit a monkey right now, not a child.



    Almost everyone has mistakenly thrown a wool sweater into the washer in hot water or an acrylic sweater into a hot dryer and found that it’s shrunk to nearly doll-size. Before you discard a shrunken sweater or give it to a toddler or pet to wear, try this unshrinking technique that could save your clothing investment.

    This process will work better on garments made from protein or hair fibers like wool, cashmere, or mohair than on synthetic fibers like acrylic or polyester. Natural hair fibers have more give and a better ability to stretch than manmade fibers, which are often heat-set to retain their shape. It won’t hurt to try unshrinking a synthetic knitted fabric, but the results might not turn out as well.


  3. I have a few computers I’m trying to fix/get fixed for a non-profit I volunteer for. I wonder if that’s a work activity for Ian? I’m trying to do the same thing that you describe Ian doing (well, I do have permission, and the devices are currently not working, with a “Boot disk not found” error). And I’m watching youtube videos and trying to fix. The laptops were donated, and they aren’t working, and the organization is small, with nothing like an IT department, so the have nothing to loose.

    I wonder if there’s a small not for profit, or school in your neck of the woods in the same boat?


    1. Maybe. He’s good at lot of tech stuff. He’s going to go through the community college classes on everything from cyber security to computer repair and we’ll see what he likes best. Hopefully, we’ll get him in a tolerant workplace sometime before he’s 30.


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