I found out something amazing today.
A friend’s son was due to come round to see us. He’s in his 20s, and has Asperger’s, and it’s quite fun listening to his conversations with my daughter. Their respective conditions mean they both have an idiosyncratic way of chatting and interacting. Josh is also a whiz on computer games, so my son was looking forward to having a PS3 session with him.
However, Josh’s plans changed: he texted us to say he was seeing his girlfriend. Unusually, my girl, was quite blasé about this. “Well, if he’s seeing his girlfriend he’ll have to come another day.” My mouth dropped open with astonishment (it’s rare that my girl is insouciant about a change of plans - frantic or distraught is more usual response). But my boy - at the age when he can’t imagine why anyone would choose a girlfriend over Lego Marvel Superheroes - was a bit confused.
“Why didn’t he come?” he asked.
“Well, he did something else instead. Yes, you were a bit disappointed, but you’ve got to remember, Josh has special needs, like your sister.”
I got the glare.
“He does not. He does not have special needs. He can walk really fast.”
“What’s walking got to do with it?”
“You said he’s got special needs.”
It was at this point, that I realised I was mishearing my son, and my son was mishearing me. What he was actually saying was “special knees.”
All this time, all these years that we’ve been saying that the reason his sister can’t run and climb as well as him, and that her muscles aren’t as strong as his, he thought it was because of her special KNEES.
Oh my giddy aunt. Oh my special knees.
Song is Low - To Our Knees