Friday, April 21, 2006

A Book Report

Some children are cruel to each other. Remember the scene in the 1994 movie Forrest Gump, directed by Robert Zemeckis and starring Tom Hanks. When young Forrest boarded the school bus wearing leg braces, nobody on the bus would let him sit with them. Everyone prevented him from taking a seat as he moved down the aisle. The bus started to pull away when Jenny offer him a seat with her. She asked him "what's wrong with your legs". Forrest explained that his spine was crooked like a "question mark". Then she asked him "are you stupid or something"?

I'm going to tell you a true story about a young boy who grew up with similar treatment as Forrest Gump received. I'll tell you some lessons he learned from the experiences and explain how his adult life evolved.

This person is in his mid-fifties now and has written a book about his life. Well, let me clarify the previous statement, he really didn't write the book. His co-author did most of the writing because this person doesn't read or write well. He did poorly in school, spent much time in principals' offices, made terrible grades, spent lots of time in wood shop, and graduated 8th from the bottom out of 1200 in his California high school.

He didn't enjoy being called nicknames throughout his youth like Mohair, Brillopad, Pubehead, and Carpethead. Some of his friends were also called nicknames that described their physical appearance like Treadface, who survived a car wreck and looked it, and Pixiehand, whose hands were different sizes. Another friend was called Noodlearm because one arm was shriveled from a polio vaccine gone wrong. Then there was Craterface who had a bad case of acne, and Brute looked like the comic strip character.

Brillopad. Pubehead, or whatever you want to call him had supportive parents who wanted the best for him even though he had dyslexia and other learning disabilities we now call ADHD or ADD. We know them as "attention deficit disorders". His brother and sister teased him "mercilessly". Brillopad, Pubehead loved to go on picnics and went on lots of them throughout his life.

I'll pick up on the story on Sunday. If you know the real name of this person, please email me his name to mikemabe@excite.com and be the first one to identify him. At the end of this series I'll report the first person who emailed me the correct name and send the individual the $15.00 cash prize. Even if you don't know this person, I think you'll find him interesting and worthy of your attention. Read the next posting early Sunday.

Have a good day!

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