Re: Flowers for Algernon: PROGRESS REPORT 10 and 11
One of the things that struck me through out the book was that perceptiveness you describe.
Growing up as a preteen and teen ager I lived across the street from a young couple that had two mentally disabled children, (exact condition I can not recall), but for those two boys it was degenerative, I guess my point here is that I grew up with a sensitivity toward what was then called "retards", Though I didn't use that wording myself, To me those two boys were just Anthony and Eddie.
Eddie was exactly my age, in my teens when he was drastically handicapped, I would sit with him for hours while his parents were out.
Just batting a balloon back and forth would bring a smile on that kids face that would light up the room. He was a friend who could not do any of the things my healthy friends could do. It was interesting growing up in that situation because on a Friday night' I'd be there with Eddie and (Anthony who was by this time bed ridden) just hanging out in case there was an emergency, which never came on my watch. My other friends were keenly aware that I often spent time watching these kids, though I was a kid myself, See , these other friends of mine were sympathetic to the cause, Its interesting, the maturity level that grows in kids when one of there own is struggling.
In my case, I watched two boys struggle for life, Two parents struggle too cope. What was grand, if you'll allow the word grand here, was that there wasn't a struggle for me or my healthy friends, there was compassion. On occasion my healthy friends would hang out with Anthony, Eddie and I, just to keep me company, though I new for them that there were better things to do. but we made do, those times were spent listening to comedy albums such as Richard Pryor, Cheech and Chong, Bill Cosby, Steve Martin, We would laugh our asses off, Just our joviality, would bring on Eddies invariable grin.
Anyway, just a memory.