Nice Day & Newsworthy
Sunday was fireworks-less in our household. Charlie slept in a little (till 8am). We did walks (2—short and long) and rides (3—school, grocery store, Jersey City so I could retrieve some items from my office). Charlie used the computer—his typing is getting much better and a little faster, and he seems at long last to be distinguishing between the "I" key and the "L" key—and was eager to find, via Google Search, images of long-gone toys (and he was positively tickled pink when I found a 4 minute video of a green and blue Leapfrog Leap Pad like the one he used to have). All that good exercise in 20-degree or so weather stoked his appetite and he was in bed, and asleep, before 7pm.
(This does bode an early wake-up, but I'd rather be up earlier rather than running around to get things ready in his lunchbox and for teaching, so that's as well.)
It was a plain and simple nice day. Granted, we didn't do anything controversial or out of the ordinary. But there's something to be said for learning how to be, quietly, peaceably.
Lest you're wondering or lest you're not: Jim and I completely and utterly enjoy our walks with Charlie, especially the long ones. Jim and I both get a lot of good thinking done out there and Charlie returns from these walks not at all fatigued, but for sure relaxed and ready to sit down and just hang on his own. I'm starting to see our neighborhood, and the neighborhoods we're venturing into (it is a 4 1/2 mile walk so we end up in walking briefly in two other towns), merely as extensions of our yard (and I wonder if Charlie sees it that way too, somewhat?). Jim (as he'll tell you himself) has ADHD and, while I don't want entirely to speak for him, regularly attests to the need for him to be in motion, to get his thinking and doing going.
I'm the antithesis of ADHD, you might say—-I do like the walks, but I get as much done sitting at a desk for hours on hours.
All that said, Jim would (if I may again speak for him…) also note that it was a quite significant effort for him to write his book, On the Irish Waterfront. The book took over ten years to write in part because Jim kept interrupting his work to run out and ride bikes with Charlie; because he had not mountains, but a mountain range of primary documents, to read through to piece together the story. He got another mention in the New York Times by Sam Roberts over the weekend, in
Long before “Sex and the City,” Mr. Big was Bill McCormack, who ran a stevedoring company and was billed as the boss of the waterfront. In “On the Irish Waterfront: The Crusader, the Movie and the Soul of the Port of New York” (Cornell University Press, $29.95), James T. Fisher dissects the way labor and business wielded power on the docks in the 1940s and ’50s.
If you have seen the film “On the Waterfront,” you have gotten the gist of it. Professor Fisher, who teaches at Fordham, amply fills in the gaps among organized crime, public officials and the street priests and Catholic hierarchy.
And, not that you really want to read another post about Andrew Wakefield, the General Medical Council, vaccines and all that—here I am on Vaccines, Autism, Bad Research And The Damage Wrought By Andrew Wakefield at Care2.com. It was in February of 1998 that Andrew Wakefield and two other doctors at the Royal Free Hospital in London published a paper in the Lancet medical journal, that, drawing on case studies of only eight children, said that the measles vaccine might be linked to inflammatory bowel disease, and that this might be connected to autism; when Wakefield announced at a press conference that he thought the measles, mumps and rubella vaccines in the MMR vaccine "should not be given in one combined shot, but in single doses, preferably a year apart," he sparked an international scare about the MMR vaccine that we are still feeling the effects of. Indeed, for all the years of Charlie's life and after his being diagnosed with autism, we've been hearing about vaccines and Wakefield etc..
Gently peaceful Sundays likes yesterday don't make for attention-grabbing headlines or colorful tales but ok by me to leave such for the history books.