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Author Topic: EP689: Spectrum of Acceptance  (Read 2338 times)


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on: July 26, 2019, 05:05:44 PM
Escape Pod 689: Spectrum of Acceptance

Author : Nyla Bright
Narrator : Maxine Moore
Host : Tina Connolly
Audio Producer : Adam Pracht

Spectrum of Acceptance is an Escape Pod original.


When Leon Kenner left the planet of Acceptance, he asked me to go with him back to Earth. I belonged with people like me, like him.

No, that isn’t where I should start. Stories should be told in chronological order to make them easy to understand.

On our first meeting, Leon took my hand in both of his as if he had known me my whole life, like he knew I was NT — neurotypical — and I liked touching. I could read his mind, and he was reading mine right back. That’s not right. No one has ever proved mind-reading. Mind-reading isn’t real.

“It’s a pleasure to meet you, Ada,” he said.

A pleasure. Meeting me was a pleasure. On Acceptance, greetings are waves of a hand. If you know someone well, maybe a “hi” or “hey.”

The pleasure was mine, but I kept that to myself. Ma was just behind me. There are procedures for how to accept a guest into the home.

“The family schedule is on the screen. So are the rules.” I pointed as I spoke. I noticed Ma looking at my pointing, and I put my hand down. Hand motions confuse people. Speak in one modality at a time.

Listen to this week’s Escape Pod!


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Reply #1 on: July 29, 2019, 02:38:29 PM
I really enjoyed this.   Some of the most thought provoking science-fiction is the stuff where preconceptions are turned on their head (metaphorically) so that we’re forced to examine the world that we see as default-setting. I feel this was a masterful example and I look forward to sharing this with some friends that I think will benefit and enjoy the new perspective.


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Reply #2 on: August 29, 2019, 01:07:16 PM
I loved this story so much! I can't even explain how this this story effected me but I am thankful to have heard it.
Thank you for this story!


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Reply #3 on: September 12, 2019, 12:33:35 AM
Excellent perspective and very nicely conveyed. Loved the narration, too.

All cat stories start with this statement: “My mother, who was the first cat, told me this...”


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Reply #4 on: September 26, 2019, 04:26:54 AM
I loved this story so much! I can't even explain how this this story effected me but I am thankful to have heard it.
Thank you for this story!

Woah. I didn't know you could have text do a banner crawl.


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Reply #5 on: October 05, 2019, 12:29:03 AM
Post deleted. Please see our One Rule and try again.

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« Last Edit: October 05, 2019, 01:33:45 PM by Bdoomed »


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Reply #6 on: February 03, 2020, 04:27:35 PM
There is so much I loved about this story. And also much that rubbed me the wrong way.

What I loved is the concept of not expecting others to adapt to your way of doing things, when you are perfectly capable of adapting to theirs.  I also loved the concept of taking only what you need and otherwise serving other people's needs. I loved the acknowledgement of the fact that people don't "read' people, they just guess (with the implied understanding that the guesses only work if both guesser and guessee are average NT's). I loved that the NT MC saw value in a non-NT way of doing things. And I loved that the main principle of the world Inclusion, revolved around considering others' needs so they can be included.

What I didn't like is that Inclusion, in practice, wasn't very inclusive. It was just as intolerant of other ways of doing things as NT-dominated Earth. For one, it only seemed to recognize one very narrow definition of autistic behaviour and marginalized all the others. Researchers now know that the stereotypical autistic behaviours highlighted in this story are only one kind of manifestation of ASD, and many autists are quite fond of touch or small talk, and not at all interested in lists or collections or order. This story seems to not know this and it makes Inclusion very not-inclusive to those people. Maybe I'm too idealistic, but I would have liked to see an Inclusion that actually makes an effort to be universally inclusive, not just to all autists, but to NT's too.

The other thing I didn't like is that all the NT ambassadors (and by proxy, every NT on Earth) were portrayed as completely narcissistic and totally inept at seeing things from someone else's point of view. While I have met quite a few NT's that were that way, I have also met many who show true emotional intelligence, who are quite able to adapt to non-NT ways of doing/thinking, and can easily find the value in doing so. I would like to think that people sent as ambassadors to a non-NT world would be picked from the latter group, not the former, or at the very least would be able to adapt on the fly. I just can't believe that the ambassadors were all so bad at it.

So, in summary, while I loved that this story was attempted, it just left me feeling let down. Maybe it reminds me too much of grade school, where you finally find a group of like-minded uncool kids, but are then told you're not good enough for them, either....
« Last Edit: February 03, 2020, 04:29:30 PM by CryptoMe »