High-school Biology. Gods, could anything be more boring? Give the girl university-level graduate studies any old day. Angie was on the spectrum, and her greatest passion was the biological sciences, particularly the human brain's more extreme abilities to affect the body's physiological and emotional states. Take, for example, this morning.
It was only the second month of school at DumDum High, as Angie liked to call it, and her father was throwing a hissy-fit over her little brother's revolting choice of school attire. "Get your butt back in your room, and take that crap off!" her dad yelled. Arnie was a middle-schooler into pirate garb after his first required reading assignment in English Arts. He sauntered back to his pirate cove - Arnie had already re-decorated his room in swash-buckling splendor - and disheartedly took off his eye patch and earring. Angie glanced up at her dad over her avocado toast for a quick assessment and diagnosis. Poor Daddy. Elevated skin temperature as apparent with a slight sheen and flushed face. Anger, Angie had determined years ago, was the emotion that caused the most obvious and, at times, the most debilatory physiologic reactions in humans. But, Angie had a hypothesis and decided at that very minute to launch her experiment on her dad. It worked. Angie's father left for work that morning happily whistling his favorite Red Hot Chili Peppers tune.
The bell rang gratefully in the middle of an AP Biology lecture on the central nervous system - a subject Angie mastered at nine - and she stepped toward her locker which was now blocked by an angry confrontation between the school's two top bullies and the school's disgustingly stupid Resource Officer who had his stupid hand on his stupid taser.
Angie loathed both bullies, of course. Their sadistic enjoyment in torturing her for her autism was repellant, but she had shut them down last year with gales of laughter complete with genuine tears of mirth and words of uninterested dismissal. Angie learned that tactic by watching a YouTube video of a spectator at a politician's townhall and employed it to great effect. But this white-hot anger sucking the air from the school's hallway was scary. Angie really wanted to go to her Theatre Arts class and show off her play-acting skills instead of sitting stuck in another lockdown. So, emboldened by this morning's successful experiment, she literally stepped in between the boys and adult and said, "Hey, you guys! Look at this!" Angie placed her index finger and her middle finger under each eye, directing the three hot-heads to her gaze which was moving left to right in a quickening motion. Left to right. Left to right. Faster and faster. It was a form of hypnosis she had seen on a crime show and had adapted for her experiment. In the thirty seconds they watched her eyes move sequentially left to right, Angie recited the ancient lyrics of her sweet grandmother's favorite tune, "As sure as I believe there's a heaven above, I know there's something much more. Something even non-believers can believe in. I believe in love."
As Angie turned into her Theatre Arts classroom, she could still hear them whistling the theme song to the old but hopeful movie Alfie. She smiled. Experiment complete. Findings conclusive. Aspies rule.