“But you look normal!” said William
Written on 20th Mar 2017 by Alex Lowery
Today we have a script for conversation between two fictional characters called William and James. It shows how a person with autism might take someone completely literally, & how other people can completely misunderstand through this. James is the one with autism. Note that I’m not saying every autistic person takes things as literally as James does (I myself don’t take things quite as literally) but I thought it might be something which would hopefully be funny, but also get the message across. I hope you enjoy!
William: How’s it going?
James: How’s what going where?
William: How’s life going?
James: Life still exists. The human race hasn’t yet died off.
William: I mean, how are you doing?
James: How am I doing what? I’m not really doing anything at the moment.
William: Are you taking the mick now?
James: Who’s Mick? And whoever he is, what does he have to do with any of this?
William: Look! Just stop!!!
James: Stop what?
William: Pack it in!!!
James: Pack what in? I’ve already packed all my luggage! Are you saying I’ve forgotten something? What is it I’ve….
William: Ok… You were funny for a while, but now you are really starting to cross a line!
James: I am? It looks to me like I’m standing right here talking to you. I don’t see any line I’ve walked over.
William: Hahaha!!! You’re hilarious!!
James: I am??? How so???
William: It’s called sarcasm, genius!
James: My IQ is fairly high, but not quite at genius level.
William: How many times have I told you now to stop annoying me?!!
James: How should I know??? You didn’t ask me to keep count!
William: Stop playing games!!!
James: The only games I play are Video games, which are very addictive, but I don’t wish to stop because they help me to distress…
William: Look!!!!! You are really starting to annoy me now!!!! Just stop right now!!!
James: Stop what? You keep telling me to stop, but I don’t know what it is I’m supposed to stop doing.
William: You know perfectly well what I want you to stop doing!
James: No I don’t.
William: Yes you do! You’re deliberately winding me up, & it’s really getting old!
James: All I’m trying to do is understand exactly what it is you’re saying! You’re not making any sense! How can I wind you up? You’re not a clock. How can annoyance get old??? It doesn’t age.
William: You have got to be kidding me!
James: Most of what you’re saying literally makes no sense.
James: Every time I ask you to clarify; you either tell me to stop, or come out with more things that make no sense. Why can’t you just explain yourself?
William: Ok… By the sounds of this; you either really enjoy making people mad, or you’re unbelievably stupid. Which is it?
James: Neither! I’m autistic. I struggle to understand language that isn’t crystal clear. I also don’t understand the difference in tone of voice.
William: Oh! You mean like Rain Man? What special talents do you have?
James: I’m good at Video games.
William: That’s not a super talent! Can you count over 100 toothpicks in seconds like Rain Man?
James: No. I don’t really have any super talents.
William: Then you can’t be autistic! Because autistic people have special talents & you don’t. I knew you were lying to me!
James: I wasn’t.
William: Yes you were! You’ve taken this label and decided to use it as an excuse for your inappropriate behaviour.
James: No, I honestly haven’t! Look autism up on Google & you’ll see that it covers a wide spectrum and not all autistics have super talents.
William: Ok… Fine! Whatever! But you look normal! What possible reason would a normal person have for telling someone he’s not normal?!
James: Autism doesn’t have a set look. We don’t look especially different from the rest of you. I have an information card with a website for you here. Look it up for more information about my condition. If you wish to ask me any further questions about it, I can also give you my email address.
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