Friday, April 27, 2012

He Has the Whole World…

"…in His hands, He’s got the wide world in His hands…"
Take a guy with Aspergers Syndrome, who is a father and takes things literally, is tone deaf but loves to sing, can obsess about obscure subjects for long periods of time, and you can potentially get a crazy, mixed up child. Or even three, as the possibility could be for us.
“But Dad said…” is a common prequel to many a discussion I have had with my kids, usually in the car when my husband isn’t along. I certainly don’t want our kids to immediately discount anything their dad tells them as he is very intellectual in science and technology, but Steve can come up with some pretty screwy ideas.
“Dad said that God can squish us if He gets mad at us.”
What? Seriously, Steve? Where did you learn that one? Oh yes, the song. Well Sweetie, it’s an allegory. It says that God is aware of us and cares for us. He isn't going to squish you.
“Loud noises will kill you.”
Coming from a man who cranks his AC/DC to the loudest level that a stereo is capable of delivering, I can only conclude that his parents taught him this. Personally, I agree that rock and roll should be heard at the highest decibels possible, but I do use caution in the car when my kids are present. I wouldn’t want to damage their hearing, which can happen from constant loud noise.
The threshold of ear pain is around 130 to 140 decibels, roughly equivalent to a jet engine at a range in the tens of meters. Eardrum rupture occurs around 160 decibels (conventional sound) to 185 decibels (nonperiodic blast pressure). Lung rupture and presumably embolism due to air blast occur at 200 decibels.  The exact cause of death was debated for many years; the prevailing theory currently is air embolism originating in the lungs. Blast pressure on the chest ruptures delicate lung tissue, admitting air bubbles into the arteries that travel to the heart, brain, and other organs and cause sudden death.
“Using headlights during the day will kill your car’s battery.”
Steve argued this with me for years. I drive with my lights on day and night for safety. He doesn’t want me to. I ask how driving at night with my lights turned on won’t damage the battery but driving with them turned on during the day would.
He insisted that a section of a book that detailed a manufacturing short in a specific car’s driving light system causing damage to that specific car’s battery was the ‘proof’ of his believe. He further contended his claim when the ‘48 month’ battery in my car finally died nine years after the purchase date. He insisted that it's demise was due to my daytime light usage. Uh huh, yes dear. It lasted 125% longer than it's original manufacturing intended.
“Using a washcloth on your face, then on your body will cause pimples on your body.”
Wow. I’m not exactly sure how to even address this one. All I can do is explain how pimples form, the need to always wash with warm water and soap to kill bacteria, and assure my kids that acne is worse during puberty but will eventually go away. Kids have enough to worry about during adolescence without Dad adding this concern.
I am able to refrain from adding, “Just ignore your father.” I don't want to undermine him.
However, that doesn’t stop me from thinking it.

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