Friday, October 07, 2005

In Defense of the Doll

It has come to my attention that there is a misunderstanding in blogland about the Wacko of the Westwing. Wacko is not slow, retarded, developmentally delayed, underprivileged, or homeless. She does not leave her shelter, her group home, or her hospital to attend knitting circle. She is intelligent -- I myself was subjected to a 10 minute discourse on traditional Jewish fasting holidays, and how they can be applied to fasting in support of other disenfranchised groups of today. When I say she is talking to herself I am being kind; what she is doing is is listening to a conversation, picking up on a few phrases, interrupting, and trying to change the conversation to something that she wants to talk about. She is not speaking in tongue in a corner by herself. Wacko arrived on the scene maybe 2 months ago. Without introducing herself, or asking any of us our names, she asked someone to teach her to knit. So, someone tried to help her out - this was met with - well, I don't think that's right, that's not the way I do it. Week after week, it's the same thing. You think you're feeding a kitten, only to be bitten by a tiger. There is nothing wrong with her -- she is the same annoying person that you are confronted by at the coffee machine first thing in the morning, who wants to know why the little packets of Sweet & Low sometimes get crunchy, but they don't appear to be wet, she is the person who stops by your desk at your busiest moment in the middle of July to have a serious discussion about whether or not we're going to have a White Christmas. And, at some point - ya just can't take it anymore.

I've been working with the mentally ill for years. Just yesterday, I represented a streaker, who for months has been flashing her neighbors. "There goes the naked lady," is a constant phrase heard on that particular block. I spent an hour convincing her husband that maybe medication is a good idea. I had one client, who when he was supposed to get up in front of the jury, and plead Not Guilty, got up and started screaming that he wasn't gay, and that anyone who thought he was a homosexual didn't believe in Allah. Obviously, the trial broke down at that point, and he was found incompetent. When we were set to go to trial again, I spent quality time at the prison having him practice standing up and saying not guilty, over and over again - because that's the only thing he had to do. Believe me, I would never intentionally make fun of someone less fortunate, or emotionally crippled by something beyond their control, like mental illness or mental retardation. With that said, to do this job for, oh, ten years now, I've also learned that you have to have patience and a sense of humor, or life is just impossible.

So, I apologize if I offended anyone, but really, this is just an annoying girl, who after 2 months has become intrusive and disruptive, that the only way to really deal with it is laugh about it, or leave, and I'd rather laugh about it.

1 comment:

yahaira said...

she sounds lovely, you should bring her by sometime.