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‘Tard offsets


Lest anyone think I throw around the “R” word with unduly casual alacrity, I beg exception under the universal “you’re allowed to make fun of your own” rule. See, I rode the short bus for three years.

Ha ha! You guys are minions of a Special Needs Weasel!

Here’s how it went down. After several years of precocious juvenile delinquency, I earned myself a trip to boarding school. It wasn’t military school; more of a finishing school for wayward dumbasses. I put up with about six weeks of that before I went AWOL. Idiots. I was an habitual rule breaker. What made them think the cure for that was more and tougher rules?

After The Man caught up with me and sent me home, no-one was quite sure what to do with me. The term was well under way at respectable schools, and I wasn’t exactly respectable school material at that point in my career. It was the early seventies, and society was just beginning to recast eternal human conditions such as “obnoxious” and “stupid” as mental disorders, thereby tapping into rich sources of federal funding. “Special schools” of dubious legitimacy were springing up all over. I got sent to an extra-specially dubious one for evaluation.

After three days of tests, I was declared sooper genius level in English, a year behind my grade level in math and an apparent congenital sufferer of “minimal cerebral dysfunction.” I always thought that was a wastebasket diagnosis for “something bad wrong, but we don’t know what.” But I recently mentioned it in conversation to a friend who’s a psych nurse, and she was like, “Oh, no…that’s what they originally called ADD.”

And I’m like, “Get! Out! ADD?! Moi?! I’m the least ADD person I know. I can amuse myself for hours staring at a particularly interesting maple leaf.”

And she’s like, “oh, ADD isn’t just hyperactive. It also covers daydreamers and chronic procrastinators.”

And I’m like, “Oh.”

So there you have it. Fair cop. I went to ‘Tard Academy for three years. It was actually pretty sweet. I did a lot of sitting in the corner with a text book. For some classes, they clustered a varying number of us of roughly similar intellectual level. It amounted to tutoring, pretty much. For meals and recess, we were all mixed together. That was the most painful part; getting my ass handed to me at kickball by people who had difficulty speaking in complete sentences and adding small sums.

I don’t think there were ever more than twenty of us, and no two with exactly the same label. The intellectual range was from above average to quite low, but nobody was snobby about it and we looked after each other pretty well. It was, all in all, not a bad memory.

And, as a result of the experience, I own the word “retarded” and its charming contemporary contractions “retard” and “tard”. I bought and paid for them.

The last three years I spent in a regular High School; decent GPA, aced my SAT’s. No harm, no foul. And the best part is telling tales around my family. All my stories start with, “when I was in Retarded School…”

My parents flinch and cry out, “Oh, you were not!”

Oh, but I was.


Comment from Christopher Taylor
Time: May 10, 2007, 6:37 pm

ADD covers any kid that requires more than the minimal amount of work to deal with for parents and teachers. Drug em up and any subject is just fascinating to the kids.

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: May 10, 2007, 6:45 pm

This was before the drugging began, alas. Though I was given phenobarb for a duodenal ulcer in my late teens, back when they thought that was a psychological problem, too.

Comment from SteamBoat McGoo
Time: May 10, 2007, 7:27 pm

So…I’m a minion (and maroon!) of a short-bus Stoat here, a blithering moron over at Aces, banned on at least two sites (one of ’em twice!), and been repeatedly called a buttmunching fucktard and asshat – albeit with good reason – elsewhere.

(cue James Earl Jones voice:)
I’m pleased….the circle is nearly complete, and soon my powers will be released and I will achieve my nefarious goals. Bwaa-haaaa-haaa.

Seriously Weasel, you’ve finally answered the question of how you find so many unique – uh, things – on the Net.

Native talent!!!!

You are a “unique” magnet. Cool. I’m envious.

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: May 10, 2007, 7:32 pm

Buttmunching fucktard! Man, if I had known that was a job description forty years ago, I would so have looked up the community college catalog on it…

Comment from SteamBoat McGoo
Time: May 10, 2007, 8:49 pm

It’s a gift. There was a time when I intentionally teased responses from bloggers and commenters – just to see if I could evoke a specific curse or remark. That one was a bonus. The day I was called that was sheer ecstasy.

You’re mini-biography “Weasel: The Revenge” is a testament to the utter doofusity and buttmonkeyness of the mental health professions back then – before there was electricity and Man had not yet learned to eat. 🙂

You obviously came out jes’ fine.

Comment from SteamBoat McGoo
Time: May 10, 2007, 8:57 pm

Another title:

“The Stoating”
(In space, no one can hear you crap yourself in fear)

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: May 11, 2007, 4:57 am

There’s a spell or two of trolling in my online past. I never go looking for it; I let it come to me (generally speaking, by way of someone pissing me off royally). Trolling is its own special pleasure, isn’t it?

Comment from Leeuwenhoek
Time: May 11, 2007, 5:22 am

These days if you are caught during a random strip search with a tool of anarchy, like a guitar pick. Or seen on video reading post Islam Malcolm X in the lunch room. Your eyes are taped open like “Clockwork Orange” and all that “Artsy Crap” is programmed out of you. Well maybe its not that bad, but it seems different from the 70’s when I went to school. A fellow “special room” dweller.

Comment from SteamBoat McGoo
Time: May 11, 2007, 5:26 am

Trolling can be fun and is best done when one is disinterested, i.e. dispassionate, about the subject at hand. It enables one to keep a clear head and one’s eye on the prize (pushing someone’s buttons).

Not to be nosy (of course, BUT…): You’ve divulged personal info that you obviously are not terribly sensitive about. Were you equally un-touchy in those last 3 years of HS and later at university? Or did the insensitivity develop later in life?

BTW: I’m a firm supporter of ‘Tard Offsets, Bachelor Offsets, DINK Offsets, etc. There should even be a Fucktard Offset – because we disturb the universe out of its equilibrium state, add energy to the system, and – ultimately – cause things happen.

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: May 11, 2007, 5:29 am

Oh, man, I love my country. Entropy posted this in a thread at Ace’s. It’s a site for buying carbon debits to wipe out Al Gore’s carbon credits. For $20 they’ll destroy a tree in your name, shoot Al an email telling him you did it because of him and send you an I Increased My Carbon Footprint t-shirt.

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: May 11, 2007, 5:34 am

My nurse friend was, like, “you probably shouldn’t tell people you went to retarded school. They might get the wrong idea.” And that totally didn’t compute. It was a minute before I even understood what she meant. Nah, McGoo. I’ve always been this indiscreet. I’m fully insulated against all embarrassments by my giant, throbbing ego.

Also, as a bonus, I can speak fluent mongoloid.

Comment from SteamBoat McGoo
Time: May 11, 2007, 6:27 am

I obviously chose the right site to dedicate my minion-hood, such as it is.

Oh, god, I am soooo ordering a carbon debit. Right now. Entropy just earned Hero status in my book.

Comment from Lokki
Time: May 11, 2007, 11:19 am

I was a child of the 60’s where the emphasis on the super smart kids. My parents fought to get me put into the special class for smarties in the 4th grade. It triggered my first visit to a psychologist who showed me roshak pictures asked all the trick questions about “where do you bury the survivors?” and so forth.

I got into the class… we learned about King Arthur and we learned geometry, and about the pyramids and a bunch of other cool stuff.

However, at the end of the year, the teacher got fired for something (NOTE: there weren’t any teacher-sex problems in those days) and we all went to regular classes for the 5th grade.

At that point I discovered that everyone else had been learning something called ‘long division’ while I was studying the pyramids and their geometry.

I never did catch up in mathematics… till Excel started doing the grunt work for me.

I think I’d have been better off in ‘Tard school like you.

Comment from Enas Yorl
Time: May 11, 2007, 12:20 pm

I was in a Special Ed class in elementary skool too. It wasn’t because I was ‘tarded in my head, I was ‘tarded in my talking. During my early speach formative years we lived in the South so I had a southern accent. Then we moved up to Yankeelandia and it’s illegal to talk that way in gubmint skools there so they “fixed” me. Now I have no accent at all. 🙁

Comment from Christopher Taylor
Time: May 11, 2007, 3:44 pm

Are you sure you didn’t have some uncle just slip you some Barbies because you were so bummed?

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: May 11, 2007, 4:02 pm

Me? Nah, they put me on Donnatal. That stands for belladonna and phenobarbital. Which sounds really exciting but was, in fact, really boring. The best part about being a teenager with an ulcer is clutching your stomach before exams and gasping, “stress…ulcer…the pain…”

My ulcer showed up on fluoroscope, though, so nobody could doubt me. That was pretty cool. The fluoroscope, I mean. I had to drink this giant barium milkshake while standing in front of the scope. I could see it go down. I could see it try to come back up when I gagged on it. Whenever the doctor turned his back, I wiggled my fingers in front of the scope which, for some reason, really pissed him off.

Eventually, I just stopped having symptoms, long before they figured out it was bacterial.

Enas, I had the opposite problem. I think it might’ve been from watching too much TV as a yout’, but I somehow grew up with a neutral accent in rural Tennessee. I was always being asked, “whar yoo frum?”

Comment from Michael
Time: May 9, 2008, 1:36 am

Meanwhile, I was playing clarinet in a Boy Scout Marching Band.

You got off easy.

Comment from LemurKing
Time: May 9, 2008, 11:46 am

Isn’t it just amazing what they do to kids? Hearing impairment will get you stuffed in a lot of little corners, both before and after diagnosis. Like your hearing and intelligence are correlated.

Neutral accent in Tennessee. Oh you poor dear. That must’ve been horrible.

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